In early September, I broke up with my obstetrician. While there were very specific things that I didn’t like about their practice, there was also some piece that I couldn’t explain. All I could say was, “it doesn’t feel right.”
I went into into this pregnancy thinking that the birth was no big deal and I didn’t care if I had a c-section. Then I started to read more. I watched the Ricki Lake documentaries. I talked to friends. I talked to Facebook. I talked to my husband a lot.
I’m not sick; I’m pregnant. This was my constant refrain.
I know that I am considered higher risk because of my age. I know that I am considered higher risk because of my thyroid. But we have been incredibly blessed and, even with these conditions, this pregnancy has been really normal. Even when I couldn’t eat a thing during the first 16 weeks, he’s been right on target for growth and all of my tests have been great.
With the more I read and learned, I knew that I wanted to remove some of the medical aspects from my birth experience. This is the only baby that I’m having and I want to be present and there. I don’t want surgery. I wanted options.
My new care is coming from a practice that has a blend of doctors and midwives. I first checked and found out that our insurance would cover prenatal care and delivery with one of their midwives at a specific hospital. I went through the lengthy process of transferring my records and waited very impatiently to hear back. Earlier this week, I found out that I was accepted by the midwife of my choice.
A huge rush of relief. I don’t think I cried, but I was near tears. This felt like the first step toward the birth that I want.
Yesterday, I had my first appointment with my midwife. More relief.
First, let me introduce her. Everyone, meet Angela.
(I asked her permission to ensure that she doesn’t mind being featured on this little corner of the internet. But look, she’s on YouTube, which makes for an easy intro.)
In the entire time that I saw my last doctor, no one from the office ever asked what I wanted during birth. Angela asked right away.
I told her that the things I want seem pretty simple to me: I want to move around and I want to be able to eat. (I cannot fathom trying to get through an experience with this much physical intensity without fuel. That blows my mind.) She simply nodded and said okay.
I told her that I’m taking hypnobirthing classes and that was also cool and not a bad word to be said.
I shared our concerns that if something goes wrong, my plan goes out the window and it is about preserving my safety and the baby’s safety. Of course, she’s 100% on board there and wouldn’t have it any other way.
Unlike the experience with my former OB, I felt heard. I feel like she will be my birth advocate. (I’m not even sure that I will need to hire a doula now.)
I will continue to see her regularly. I will also see the perinatologist, who has the pleasure of handling my thyroid now. (It’s my understanding that the thyroid is a bigger issue during the actual pregnancy because it can impact growth, rather than a factor that will make the birth higher risk.)
I chose a midwife because I wasn’t comfortable with the care of my OB. I chose a midwife because I want a birth without significant medical intervention, if possible. I chose a midwife because I want an advocate in the delivery room.
I am incredibly relieved that this worked out so well. I am now looking forward to the birth experience more than ever.
Thank you to everyone for your support during the change. And a huge thank you for answering my nonstop questions while I tried to sort through all of the information.