Meeting with the Midwives

On Monday morning we met with the midwives for the first time.

After the usual mess of paperwork, we were ushered into a small examination room. S sat on the table next to the monitoring equipment, and I squeezed into a seat in the corner. The room was dark and overheated and sterile. We expected a face-to-face chat with a midwife – was it going to happen here?

Within a few minutes one of the midwives poked her head in and apologized for the wait. “Come with me,” she said, in a calm tone, “we’ll meet in the doctor’s office.”

Sitting comfortably around a desk in a cluttered but airy office, she interviewed us about our medical and family histories and asked S in detail about the pregnancy so far. We had a few concerns. She reassured us that sleeping a lot is normal, frequent headaches are common, and it is usual for a pregnant woman to feel faint if her stomach is empty. She gave S good suggestions about eating moderately every two hours, and how to stay active during the pregnancy, and recommended that S drink more water – up to three liters a day if possible. We had plenty of time to ask questions, and she took our concerns seriously. She didn’t push us to go for the Nuchal screening, but advised us that more information was better than less. And she said that, based on her healthy diet, S didn’t have to stress too much about taking vitamins every day.

The meeting was everything that we don’t associate with a traditional doctor. We felt recognized as individuals, had the space to ask questions and provided with thoughtful answers, and were treated warmly and pleasantly. This was why we chose to go with midwives and have the birth at the Birthing Center. We want a safe environment that respects us as people with emotional, not just physical, needs. It feels great having someone that we trust to turn to for help.

The real thrill came at the end of the visit. We went back to the exam room and the midwife felt around S’s stomach – everything seemed to be where it should be – and then put a fetal monitor on her. A fast and steady rhythm, whawh, whawh, whawh, whawh, came through the speaker. “That’s your baby’s heartbeat,” she said. The three of us were all smiles.

Throughout the day I had little rushes of euphoria remembering the sound. We’re having a baby! It’s feeling like more and more of a reality.


1 Response to “Meeting with the Midwives”

  1. 1 Labor, part 1 « Daddy-to-Be Trackback on June 8, 2009 at 10:04 am

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