What's this blog all about? Felix! And...

Anniversary (2) Asthma (3) Autumn (9) Baby (4) Birth (9) Boyz (3) Car (5) Christmas (2) Dexter (2) Ezra (7) Family (29) Family Pic (13) Felix (6) Friends (1) Funny (1) General Mills (3) Grandma Beverly (14) Grandma Hall (9) Grandpa Arnold (2) Grandpa Hall (5) Helping (1) Home Birth (2) Homemaking (1) Internet (2) Jennie (1) LA (1) LDS (1) Learning (1) Life Decisions (2) Love (4) MBA (13) MFT (6) Michigan (18) Minnesota (17) Mischief (5) Moving (11) Musings (13) Nauvoo (1) Newborn (8) NYC (7) Ohio (19) Pregnancy (12) Random (3) Shakespears (4) Smiling (3) Spring (3) Steinway (4) Summer (15) Talking (1) Tender Mercy (4) Toys (3) Utah (10) Vacation (16) Vanessa (1) Video (6) Winter (2) Yoga (1)

Thursday, September 01, 2011

The Decision to Birth at Home

Well, now that Dexter is almost a month old, I think I'll chronicle his birth.

Upon learning that I was pregnant last December, I began to look into options for my prenatal care and delivery. I found, surprisingly, that home births were covered under my health plan with Blue Cross Blue Shield. I can't say that it was always an aspiration of mine to have a home birth, but the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea.

I realized that a home birth would be different from my previous births in two ways: first, I would give birth, of course, at home; second, I would receive care from a midwife in stead of an obstetrician.

Skipping the hospital seemed great to me. My labors and deliveries with Felix and Ezra were quick and uncomplicated--I labor at home for a few hours in denial that I'm actually in labor. Then transition sets in and I decide that it definitely is labor. When I can't deny the inevitable any longer (that the baby's coming NOW, whether or not I've checked off everything on my insanely long nesting to-do list), I jump in the car and Brian races to the hospital, getting there in just enough time to avoid a car birth. Some random doctor races into the room to catch the baby, and we go home as soon as they let us. So the idea of birthing at home seemed great to me! All the fun of labor without the awkward leg-crossing in the car to slow down the pushing contractions.

So, what about a midwife? My OB with Felix, in St. George, UT, was fantastic; if we had stayed in St. George I probably never would have looked beyond the realm of obstetrics for my prenatal care. But my OB in Ann Arbor, MI was not the greatest. (She was chronically 60-90 min late to appointments, flippant with answers to sensitive questions, talked about herself the whole time during checkups, and, just to top it off, stripped my membranes without asking me at 36 wks. [WHAT???] She said, "Oh, most women want to go early". Well, not me. I wanted that baby to have as much womb time as possible. Talk about disrespectful, non-personalized care.)

So I began reading up on midwifery, and I found that the model of care really appealed to me, especially in contrast with the standard medical model.

After making dozens of phone calls, I settled on Kate Saumweber of Twin Cities Midwifery. During our initial consultation, I sensed her empathy, intelligence, and wisdom, and was sold on the fact that all prenatal care would take place in my home! To say that my experience with Kate far exceeded my expectations is an understatement. Kate was phenominal, the perfect midwife. She would spend as long as I liked at our visits answering questions, learning about my past and current pregnancies, and helping Felix and Ezra feel included in Dexter's development. She was thorough and organized, even following up with me via phone in between visits. As a midwife, she cared for me as a whole person, looking after not just my (and baby's) physical health, but my emotional and social well-being as well. Her approach to care was educational and empowering; I felt like we collaborated in the decisions on prenatal care, by talking over options along the way (regarding tests, precedures, preparations, etc.). In fact, my experience was so wonderful that I can honestly say I'm already looking forward to the next pregnancy. In due time, of course. :)

OK, so the prenatal care was fabulous, but what about the actual birth? Well, that will have to wait until my next entry. Dexter's hungry.

1 comment:

Abby said...

You never got around to the story...Is he still hungry?

I hope you are all doing well.

Miss you