|I think having your friend with you as a labor massage therapist is a fantastic idea! She can meet you and your dh at home when you go into labor and provide support for both of you during your labor. Her presence will help you stay home longer (this is REALLY important - stay home just as long as you possibly can). She would also be a great help to your dh by offering him the chance to just be your emotional support and being available to give him a break if he needs it (this is a big emotional journey for him too!).
Have your husband read Penny Simkins' book The Birth Partner, have him tab pages for specific situations and pack it in your birth bag (you read it too). Both of you read Husband Coached Childbirth and Birthing From Within and Ina May's Guide to Childbirth. The more you both are educated and on the same page the more prepared you will be to stay calm, stay home (as long as you can), and stay firm in getting what you want once you are at the hospital. Those are the three most important things you can do to help yourself.
All this is great advice.
I had a traditional big OB practice for birth #1 - they weren't so great - and still had an intervention free birth (no IV, no drugs, no pit, etc.). Everyone has mentioned some things that will increase your chances of success and sounds like these are all things you are prepared to do:
1. Have your friend there for emotional support and physical comfort techniques - from the beginning of labor (at home)
2. Get your DH prepared to play a birth partner role
3. Plan to stay home from the hospital until the last minute (I found "Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way" to be the best, most detailed guide to how to judge this correctly - suggest you look for it at the library) Some women drive to the hospital and then take a long walk and labor in the parking lot
4. Ask for an NCB-friendly nurse when you arrive
5. Write a short, one-page, bullet-point birth plan that nurses can read quickly - have DH hand it over to them immediately
Stay firm. Ask to have everything explained to you. Prepare your DH for the fact that you may be in laborland and have trouble advocating for yourself. Train your DH to say automatically: "thanks for the advice, Wifey and I would just like a minute alone to discuss it and decide what to do".
If you really want to avoid medication, some women pick a code word. That way, if you say "Ow, ow, this hurts, I can't stand it, I can't do this, I want to die, make this stop, why can't I have drugs!" (which, I warn you, is highly likely!!) your DH will simply say "honey, you are doing great, just hang in there a little longer" but if you say "Rosebud" then you have really changed your mind and do want the epidural.
Finally - you mentioned you are in a big practice. If possible, request that you rotate your remaining appts across all the doctors equally. Since your main OB isn't exactly terrific, there's no loss. What you will gain is at least a minor measure of comfort and familiarity with whichever OB ends up being on call that day.