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Are any of our midwives also military wives?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I'm at a cross roads and would appreciate any words of wisdom or insight. For 5 years now, i have known that I want to become a midwife when the time is right. Cost of classes and education or other family issues have made me put this calling of midwifery on the back burner. I have kept telling myself that when the time is right, i will get there.

 

Now fast forward to my current situation and i'm starting to lose hope that it will ever be the right time. So i wonder, how do you forge out and make sure that your calling is enough to be fulfilling to the woman who ask you to serve them?

 

I have a 6 month old son and while my older girls are finally at the stage of being able to be left with someone during births and while i run a practice, he is not. And dh joined the military in the last 2 years. I look at possible deployments and his work schedule of constantly going to various Army training things (at least once a month for a minimum of 3 days at a time) as a huge determent in my goals for becoming a midwife and opening my own homebirth practice.

 

At this point i have laid out all the pros and cons and dh, while he is 100% supportive and feels i'd be a great midwife, doesn't really grasp my worries about running a practice with 1 small babe and no set childcare while he is in the military. My other big thing, is that in the next year and a half i will come into a lump sum amount of money that will pay for my schooling, preceptor and all costs that it will take to get my CPM in CA and start up a homebirth practice. I would really LOVE to set aside this money specifically for that. But, being the frugal person that i am . . . i want to have a realistic goal. If this is an impossible thing with dh's career in the Army National Guard, then i would much rather pay off all debt (though i will admit it would probably REALLY sadden me to do that and put my midwifery goals on hold for who knows how long).

 

Any midwives who have dh's who have no set schedule, or are military, or don't have a partner? I'd love to hear of suggestions or examples of how to make this work. BUT i'd also love to hear honest opinions if this is just not something that is going to work and if i should invest this money in other ways and continue to bide my time until i can really be the midwife i want to be.

post #2 of 10

I have the same questions.  With my husband being military and three young kids and no family or reliable childcare it's not really practical for me to entertain an apprenticeship right now.  I could probably work on the didactic portion of midwifery studies, but the clinical portion would have to wait at least 3-4 years, if not more.  I wonder if that's possible with some of the formal programs.  To do the coursework and then down the line start the apprenticeship?  I wonder.

 

I tell myself that if it's not possible now I can always work on becoming a doula, CBE and lactation consultant until I can devote time to midwifery training/clinical work.  The money isn't really the problem.  Most of the programs I've looked into are reasonably priced from 4-12k, which isn't bad.  It's just working it all in with my husband's schedule and my children.  I know that there's no such thing as starting too late and I can start later, but I've had this desire for at least 4 years and I want to do something.  My kids will only be young once and with my husband's schedule it's vital they have me there.  So I realize I can come back to my studies down the line.

post #3 of 10

I'm in the same boat. Midwivery is one of those jobs best done in one place, whether it's attending a school for three years or apprenticing with one preceptor. The military is unpredictable. Moves, deployments, hubby's long hours. I also have small children, so I'm working on a compromise. I'm training as a doula and Childbirth educator, because they are a little more flexible. I don't expect to do much more than volunteer for the next couple years, but I will be gaining experience and confidence.  Luckily, DH is getting close to retirement, so we can stay in a place of our choosing for 3 or 4 years, and my youndest babe will be 4 years old. Don't give up on catching your dream. But you might have to sneak up on it sideways! :)

post #4 of 10

I just wanted to say I totally understand! I've wanted to be a midwife since high school. I'm a mama to 4 kiddos- I feel as thought it might be to tough to actually be a mother and midwife (yes I know many midwives who do it like modern day heros namaste.gif ) I'm just not sure that I can. Also given a hubby that is not supportive, It's a sad thought that this passion in my life might never happen. I say if you have support, finances, and a place to precept or school than go for it. I think the actual private practice element will all pan out when you need it. I don't think if you have the calling that it will ever go away. Blessings to you on this journey!

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies. It helps to know i'm not alone, though it stinks there are others of us in this boat. Many of my civilian friends don't understand and even dh at times thinks i'm making excuses to not start schooling but he really doesn't grasp the meaning of an apprenticeship i fear. I keep telling myself, "When the time is right, i won't be able to deny it". But it's sooo hard waiting.

 

I have a question for those doing doula work, do you have realible childcare for when this happens? I'm still nursing and ds is pretty high demand. I don't see myself being able to be away from him for another 6-12 months at a minimum (he's almost 7 months old). Maybe i should start my courses for getting certified as a doula and child birth education and post partum doula. Post partum doula REALLY appeals to my family thinking as i will know when and what days i have to commit to childcare and having 3 high demand children of my own, i really understand the atypical child. I also have experience with hyperlaction and being a surrogate so i could even offer services to those who go the route of adoption. But i fear that the role of a post partum doula hasn't caught on in the area i live in yet.

 

Lots to think about and lots of possible forks in the road to choose! Thanks for giving me a place to have a sounding board as many, many people do not understand the inconsitancy of having a spouse in the military.

post #6 of 10

I just finally started my doula course, my youngest is 10mnths, and DH has less demanding hours than he has for a long time. I definately have to put some work into "emergency" childcare for when DH isn't available, that's going to be my biggest obstacle, I think. I like the idea of postpartum doula if you're called to it. A baby of toddler, happily slung on your back should be manageable, if you have to.

    You might look at finishing the education part of things now too, if you were thinking about a degree program or something like that.

post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aka mommy View Post

 

Any midwives who have dh's who have no set schedule, or are military, or don't have a partner? I'd love to hear of suggestions or examples of how to make this work. BUT i'd also love to hear honest opinions if this is just not something that is going to work and if i should invest this money in other ways and continue to bide my time until i can really be the midwife i want to be.

This is totally and completely OT- but your UN is similar to one on another board I frequent, and when I noticed your siggy I just had to ask- do you post anywhere else?

 

ON topic- when I was actively practicing, I had an "on call" baby sitter to take care of the overlap when dh was still at work. It was expensive and a PITA, and eventually dh got a job where he was able to base his schedule around mine- however, I worked with 2 other midwives on rotating call so it was much easier than being a solo midwife. My sister is not interested in being a midwife, but she is very interested in working around childbirth/breastfeeding. She is a single mom of two young kids, and being a postpartum doula or a lactation consultant would be a great fit for her. I think it would be a great way for you to get involved in the childbirth "community" as well.
 

post #8 of 10

I'm a military wife.  DH is USAF reserve right now, but was active duty when I was doing my apprenticeship.  He's also working 50-60h weeks right now.  Ask me questions and I'll do my best to answer.

 

(nak)

post #9 of 10

My dh is active duty, and luckily he's ashore 10 months out of the year .  Even still, he works 70+ hours per week and always has to bring work home.  I've been trying to be a midwifery student for a few years, but I have to confess that I'm close to giving up.  Dh feels terrible about my inability to add serious study to sahming, homeschooling and managing our household, but there's really not anything he can do.  As it is, I practically have to force him to get 4-6 hours of sleep per night. I'm feeling very discouraged. guilty.gif

post #10 of 10

My DH is not in the military, but we are constantly moving around for his work. I have been studying midwifery in a course (AAMI) for 1.5 yrs. now and I love that I can take my education with me wherever and how ever often that is. I study on my own time, so it's no biggy. We have talked about DH enlisting in the Military for the past 3 yrs. but nothing has come of it and now I'm due with child #4 so it's most likely not going to happen. Either way, I've come to the conclusion that you are never done learning even once you become a midwife so I'll just spend all these years learning as much as I can before I begin an apprenticeship. My kids are all little and we feel it's more important for me to be with them right now (that's just us, not speaking for anyone else). I am a Doula, but haven't been practicing because I just can't stand the trauma in hospitals anymore and we've talked about me doing other avenues also. Like Massage Therapy for pregnancy and pp, Mayan abdominal massage, CBE, ect. Because we move often, we don't have reliable sitters either and DH works many hrs. so I'm okay with our decisions about my path for the next 5+ yrs. I also believe that when I am meant to have an apprenticeship, the doors will open. Good luck fellow mama.

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