Oh, I am SO glad that wasn't difficult! I searched the web looking at different local midwives, and set up a consultation with my first preference (based on nothing more than website info and the few reviews I had access to online). She's a 5-minute drive from my house, and spent a good 1.5 hours talking with me and DH this morning! I asked her tons of questions, and was happy with all of them. I sort of wish she had a few more years experience, but she's attended at least 300 births and been in charge of at least 100, and has had a variety of midwives work with her before she got her own license, so she's seen quite a few different styles and techniques. She also started out as a doula, which may definitely come in helpful. :)
I did find out (for those who paid attention to my CPM vs CNM thread) that while it's tecnically not legal for CPMs to use pitocin, oxygen, and do sutures for tears, most of the HB midwives do them anyway because they feel like it's important. And, the law is being reviewed this year and it looks favorable that it will change for the better. Those were probably my biggest concerns. Beyond that, I also wanted to know that she could handle large babies (as my 3rd was 10lb 10oz) and she's done plenty in that weight range, including one even in the 11lb range, without any complications. Good to hear that! She has never attended a breech birth, so if it came to that, she'd help me figure out other options. But I'm really not worried about that being a problem, with my history. Basically, everything I have strong feelings about, she meshes well. DH and I felt comfortable enough with her (and her assistant) that we decided not to continue our search, and just stop there and hire her. And good thing! She only accepts 2 moms per due date month, and I think she said I'm 2nd for October. That was also reassuring to hear, actually, as my previous HB midwife was busy with another client when my 3rd was born. I had her assistant attend, and the other midwife was someone "underground" who I had never met. They were both awesome, but it sort of threw me at first to not have who I was expecting there.
She sent me home with a lot of "homework". I have to go do my bloodwork, fill out an entire week's worth of every single thing I eat (oh, how I hate those assignments), write down my labor history either in a simple format like bulleted details or entire birth stories (like what I put on my family blog, for instance). Also papers with typical health history, and a payment agreement. Her fee is $3000 if you pay cash, but if something crazy happens she's willing to negotiate to a lower fee, and do payments, and all that jazz. DH is totally on board and willing to pay completely out of pocket to avoid the hospital again, if that's what we end up needing to do. And of course, I do NOT take for granted how nice it is to have a husband right on the same page with me on this front!
She offered to listen for the heartbeat today, but my bladder was achingly full and we needed to get back home and get DS ready for Kindergarten, so I declined. We'll definitely listen in for my first official appointment, which is already scheduled for March 14th. Yay!! I'm excited. It feels so good to have this all figured out and to have found someone I feel comfortable with so easily.