After facing induction at 42 weeks, with my hospital midwives now talking up pit and "going for it", c-section or not, I am very thankful that I can find what I need on the black market--this time a homebirth midwife. My boy came at 42 weeks and 4 days, all on his own. I had 13 hours of labor and a delightful water birth in my living room, surrounded by people who love me and him. I can't imagine having had this experience in the hospital. I think it is close to a miracle that my midwife accepted me at 41.5 weeks. She had faith that the baby would come on his own (and yes, checkups to make sure everything was all right in the meantime). She let me labor, answering my questions and providing assistance when I askeed. Otherwise, I felt like my body did what I knew it could do, even as a first-time birther at 38 years old.
I would love it if Illinois had licensed homebirth midwives, but the select handful on a committee in our state capital won't pass the bill on to the general assembly. There's not enough money in private hands to overcome the medical lobby. I don't see why this should limit my choice to have a home birth.
I have been amazed since the beginning at the politics of birth. It's almost as raucous as the abortion issue. I do find it hard to believe that it's legal to get an abortion (something highly contested as moral or immoral), but not have a skilled midwife legally assist me and my baby at the time of his birth. I feel just as I would be very glad to have access to a black market abortionist (preferably an herbalist) if I ever were seeking an abortion, I am just as glad for my access to a black market midwife.
My biggest issue with having a home birth was that I knew, should a problem arrive, I would not have my midwife assisting me through the transition. But still, I felt I was much safer, as well as more comfortable, having my birth at home, and dealilng with it, on the occasion it might happen.
Yes, licensing would be great. It is not our community that decides the legality/morality of home birth midwives; it is big money. Our legal system is rife with hypocrisy and corruption. I long ago decided to follow my inner voice as to what was morally acceptable, and I don't regret it. There are so many of us who desire to maintain our autonomy, but can't legally do so.