Yes! I used a midwife last time and will use one again this time. :) I searched online for questions to ask, but I think the most important ones are what you feel is important. Like for me - delayed cord clamping was importing, so I asked if she allowed the cord to stop pulsating before clamping and cutting. I also was very adamant about birthing my child at home, so if it was found that my baby was breach, could she deliver? I would want to know what her hospital transfer rate was, how long she was in business, maybe even see if she has a fb page or get references if you are unfamiliar with her. :) I'm sure other ladies have some great questions as well, but think about what you didn't like about your hospital births and see what she can do to make this birth better. If you're having a homebirth or in a birthing center you should be good to go, if you're having a hospital birth with midwife, I'd be concerned that they are a "medwife" and I would want to know what they would want pushed on me.
I find this useful - you can find lists of questions to ask, but what answers are good? Hard to know.
She wrote a long piece on interviewing, too.
Homebirth or not, it's helpful, I think.
We are hoping to go the homebirth route this time. With DS we used a local birthing center and had an amazing experience with the midwives and staff. However, I've always been interested in homebirth, and thinking ahead to labor and delivery, I think I will want to be in the comfort of my own home, as well as not have to worry about taking DS somewhere in the middle of the night, ya know? How wonderful if he just sleeps through the whole thing and wakes up to his new baby brother/sister?!
Anyway, we are meeting with a potential homebirth midwife next week, too, and I'm so excited to get the ball rolling!
This is baby #5 for me and I have never NOT used a midwife. :) All babies over 10 pounds, no tearing, no hospital transfers, no issues. I love midwives! The only issue is that there are usually only a few to choose from, so you may not have the perfect fit personality-wise. I never used the same midwife twice, partly due to moving but also due to never really LOVING my midwife until the last one (and she is now 3 states away so I am starting over again).
We are using a midwife, and this is our second home birth with her. In my opinion, the personalized prenatal care and the relaxed and caring atmosphere that you can only get with a midwife is worth it. I had a "medwife" in a busy OB practice that only delivered in hospitals with my first. I assumed that because she was a "midwife" that she would honor my wishes. I ended up with a crazy hospital birth with tons of interventions. Ask questions that help ease your mind and comfort your DH. My hubby is not my oldest son's father, so he didn't understand why I didn't want to have a "normal hospital birth" (whatever that means.) But after meeting with midwives, he was on board pretty quickly. I had an OB for my first few appointments of my second pregnancy and we saw someone different every time. We were just a chart and a number. I can walk into my midwife's office two years later and she remembers me, my kids and my husband by first name and will start retelling our birth moments. You'll know when you find the right one.
We just met with a midwife tonight to discuss home birth options. We LOVED her, so we plan on going the home birth route this time. She just had such a calmness and inner strength that put me at ease. And we were cracking jokes toward the end of the visit, so I know our personalities will enjoy each other. My hubby really got along well with her, too. And she mentioned how important it is for the husband and her to connect and feel comfortable, as they will be a team that day. She even has weekend appointments available, so husbands can be at checkups more often.
Anyway, we are thrilled we found a midwife that we connected with. Not to mention, her fee covers EVERYTHING we will need, except the ultrasound. Very pleased!
I have some midwife ramblings that I'd like some feedback on . . .
So initially I was thinking homebirth. I am Evidence Based Medicine Girl; homebirth has very similar safety statistics to hospital birth (maybe slightly riskier), but a DRAMATICALLY lower rate of unnecessary intervention, which I really want to avoid. In my personal risk-benefit analysis, that evens out very nicely. So I went to see a homebirth midwife (a CPM), and I really like her.
I am ten minutes away from the biggest teaching hospital within a hundred miles, the one with a level 3 NICU that sick babies from several surrounding STATES are life-flighted to. Initially this made me feel more comfortable --- hey, level 3 NICU ten minutes away! Reassuring!
But then I realized that while I like the hospital overall and have worked there and feel comfortable there and trust all of their specialties (including pediatrics) except one . . . OB. I REALLY hate their OB department. I don't trust them as far as I can throw them. And my #2 childbirth fear, after losing my child, is transfer there, especially since they have a rep for sneering at and shaming homebirth mamas. And primips such as myself have a really high homebirth to hospital transfer rate.
So now I'm checking out another practice of midwives that deliver babies only out of a different hospital --- a smaller, community hospital with an attached birthing center, about 45 minutes from where I live. I have a meet-and-greet with them on Wednesday (their office isn't at the hospital --- it's much closer to me, happily!). If they're down with my non-negotiables (for Evidence Based Medicine Girl, those are NO ELECTRONIC FETAL MONITORING [intermittent auscultation only], no saline lock, no pit, being able to eat and drink during labor, full mobility), I think this might be the better choice for me. Because if something DOES go wrong, I won't have to transfer to Big Hospital --- I will stay at Small Hospital. Unless something is veryveryvery wrong indeed, in which case I doubt I'd care.
Plus my insurance doesn't cover homebirth, so with the $3700 I'd save I can both take a babymoon to visit my sister in China AND hire a doula.
Does this sound reasonable? Evidence Based Medicine Girl is concerned because midwives delivering in hospital don't have toooooo much lower rates of intervention than OBs do (they ARE lower) and I'm worried everything would be a fight. With homebirth I didn't feel I had to agonize so much over a birth plan.
Whew, that was long! I know I'm only a few weeks, but this is the *#$% that's been keeping me up at night.
ETA: There is no free standing birthing center in my entire state, so that's not an option for me . . .
I went with a natural minded ob for my first birth for almost the same exact reason. Then at about 4/5 months I was trying to "negotiate" my birth plan with him and started freaking out. I realized that having the baby in an ideal environment was essential for me personally. I realized that if I did have to transfer, I would deal with whatever happened but that for me hospital birth was just impossible to go squarely. I had to much anxiety and psd...plus we were on medicaid. I really believed that I would have ended up an "emergency" c-section due to those factors amongst some other
And I labored for 37 hours...I no doubt would have gotten a section for lack of progression. Lol
So I finally decided I had to persue a homebirth.
I'm confident ypu will figure out what is most important to uou as well. Lol
My 4th baby, and 4th midwife. The regulations in my state have relaxed over the years, so I actually get to hire one in my city this time!
My first child was born in the hospital after a transfer from home. Second & third babies were born in birth pools at home. I believe that the home laboring experience is far better, but I don;t have any first hand knowledge of labor at a hospitals. I can surely say that the birth and postnatal care are far superior at home. I get my own music, a birth pool, muted lighting in my choice of color, well basically I get to design the environment, and I think it is far superior. After the birth, Me, new baby, and DH get to take our first nap together on our own bed. With a midwife you get to hold the baby through all the "tests", a nurse doesn't take the new baby to a cold steel table and pull and grab on it. I could go on about the details, but I certainly recommend a midwife and homebirth just for the relaxing environment and supportive nurturing care.
New midwives for us this time, well kind of. My 20 month old was going to born at a birth center but she was 15 days late which lead to an induction (after my water broke that morning) where one of the midwives tricked me into coming to the hospital saying they could check me out and then let me leave to walk around or whatever bc my contractions had not started. Once we got there it was a different midwife on shift and she said I had to be admitted and if I left I was waving care and no one would deliver my baby. Real nice! Well her scare tactic worked and I stayed and they pumped me full of pitocin - like had it up to 26 or something even though my contractions were regular for a long time. I had all kinda of continuous fetal monitors and later a monitor they put on the babys head as I was pushing bc her heart rate was dropping a little as I was pushing. I didn't have an epidural which was good, and they went along with some aspects our birth plan like waiting for the cord to stop pulsing to cut it, skin to skin contact for about an hour after birth, but I hated the hospital!
This time the amazing midwife that delivered my daughter is at a small practice closer to me so we are going with them and homebirth. I have yet to figure out the $$$, but I am pretty dead set on it.
@Pepperedmoth I think your second plan sounds good too if you meet these new midwives and like them, plus its closer to home and you would save money. I personally think if going hospital route a doula is an amazing resource! I think a lot of the interventions and treatment you get depend on the relationship the midwives have with the hospital staff, too. The birth center had a brand new relationship with hospital I delivered at... maybe a month tops, so you could feel the tension. I would take a tour of the hospital if I were you too!