Why I Loved Having a Midwife

Image via /Flickr
Image via Keith Williamson /Flickr

 

In the darkness, I focus on the contraction I feel building in the bottom of my abdomen. The pressure builds in my hips, spreading through my pelvis, crashing over my entire body as I will my body to breathe and let the wave overtake me. 

Gradually, the wave recedes and I take a deep breath, relaxing back into the tub where I will spend the beginning stages of my labor. 

A midwife is there to guide and empower you in having the type of pregnancy, labor, and delivery that you know is best.

As my breathing slows back to normal, I suddenly sense a presence in the darkness next to me. I look over the edge of the tub and I see my nurse-midwife settling back against the wall next to me, coffee cup in hand and bleary eyes still wearing the mask of sleep. 

She smiles at me and raises her coffee cup in a greeting. “I'm here,” she says simply. 

It is midnight and she's there. 

And that's all that matters. 

I have delivered two babies at hospitals, all-naturally with the help of a nurse midwife, and I have delivered one child with a traditional OB/GYN and the aid of an epidural. I have worked in labor and delivery for many years and have seen deliveries with both midwives and regular doctors. I have seen–and experienced–both ends of the spectrum. 

And while I can assure you that no one birth is the same and no one method of birth is the same for any woman, I will tell you that I loved having my nurse-midwife and I am so glad I had the experience. Perhaps having the experience both ways showed me how different of an experience having a midwife can be. 

Birth with a midwife is truly a different experience than with a traditional OB. The entire process from start of the pregnancy to the birth of the baby feels much more empowering. The emphasis is on you, not on following the advice and prescription of your doctor. A midwife is there to guide and empower you in having the type of pregnancy, labor, and delivery that you know is best.

She guides and assists, but she doesn't always prescribe or tell you what is best. She is a gentle form of support with you in charge — not the other way around.

The difference between a midwife and a doctor is summed up so vividly in my story in the beginning — how many doctors do you know of that would have come in in the middle of the night and plopped down in the bathroom simply to sit and be with a patient? It just doesn't happen because doctors don't have that kind of time. 

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Midwives do. 

Not every woman is looking for birth to be an empowering and uplifting experience, nor do they want to be the ones in charge, calling the shots. And of course, sometimes things simply don't go the way we plan or want and that's ok, too. 

But birth with a midwife can be a completely different experience. And only you can decide if that's right for you. 

Have you considered a midwife? Have you used one before and had a good experience?

What do you think?

Why I Loved Having a Midwife

Chaunie Brusie is a writer, mom of four, and founder of The Stay Strong Mom, a community + gift box service for moms after loss. ... More

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7 comments

  1. Stephanie says:

    I was working with a midwife at my hospital of choice, but when they diagnosed my gestational diabetes they said that I was a “high risk” pregnancy, and so had to switch to an OB/GYN. I am a little let down, this is my first though, and certainly not my last.

  2. Cassy says:

    Excellent blog! My aunt just asked me during my baby shower last weekend if I was going to do a home birth and the thought actually never even crossed my mind! Then, I got a call from a good friend of mine who is a strong advocate for midwives and was discussing some of the benefits with me. Even though I won’t be using a mid wife this go around, who knows what round 2 will bring! 🙂

  3. carter says:

    I ALSO HAD A MIDWIFE AND I THOUGHT SHE WAS GREAT. SHE UNDERSTOOD HOW I WAS FEELING AND DIDN’T JUDGE ME.SHE WOULD TALK TO ME IN A RELAXING VOICE WHICH IN RETURN MADE ME VERY CALM. I DEFINITELY WOULD RECOMMEND A MIDWIFE TO EVERY ONE.

  4. Ashley says:

    I also had a midwife! Loved the experience and deffinitly recommend mid wives over doctors !

  5. Susan says:

    I had a midwife with my daughter, and I still remember today the closeness, caring and support she gave me for 9 hours that were the most important in my life! I hope my daughter, who is having a boy in November, chooses to have a midwife for his birth. There’s no comparison to having an OB/GYN only, he just came in and out every 4 hours to check and see how things were going. I was thankful for that, even tho he knew I had chosen the midwife. I don’t know if doctors have to come in and check or not when you have a midwife, but I certainly felt safe and cared for with my midwife.
    Susan

  6. Jaime says:

    If you want someone always there with you then a midwife is a good idea.

  7. Phammom says:

    I may do a home birth for our next child but for the first we are doing a birthing center in a hospital.

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