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Tribe for Midwifery Students 2008!! - Page 83

post #1641 of 1798
Synchro, that's so awesome you got to catch!!! : I'm glad to hear that mom and baby are doing well. That must have been such a rush!



My interview went well. The midwife is a complete sweetheart. I love her birth philosophy. I just sat there nodding my head as she was talking. Pretty much exactly how I want to practice some day. I told her that I love the way Pamela Hines-Powell writes and practices (from what I've read hear and on her blog) and she said she got to spend a lot of time with her at the Trust Birth Conference! Too cool. I'm going to go to her Childbirth class tomorrow night. She's going to be starting a study group. Possibly I'll start working with her. We're going to keep in touch.
post #1642 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nursingmama05 View Post
I personally don't believe I could work as a doula knowing majority of my cleints would be hospital births.
Can you talk to me a little more about this. It seems that moms in hospital settings need the most support.



post #1643 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by rebirth View Post
I find them to be very different- but also intwined and extrememly complementary.

I think any midwife would benefit from also having doula skills. What you're doing, Christeen, is pretty much what i'm doing. I'm hoping that my doula (and later my pp doula, LC and CBE) work will help to fund my education- as well as being things I love and feel extremely passionate about.
I believe, like you, that they are complementary... yet I don't like how some believe a mw has to have started as a doula. I've been hired as a doula but most of my "doula" births have been accompanying transport clients so I switch from mw asst to doula. I do think a few births at the local hospital can be helpful for just that, but you can leave that by accompanying your preceptor to transports. I think one can be an awesome midwife without having been a doula.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sweetsunshine85 View Post
Ok, this is off topic a little, but I got in! I received my student file number for AAMI!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :yay
Yay! :

Quote:
Originally Posted by Synchro246 View Post
I don't want to give too many details, but I am popping in to say that I went to my BFF's birth last night. I was supposed to be taking pictures and wrangling her older children, but her labor went from ctx 10 minutes apart to birth of the baby in 1 hour and the midwife wasn't there and I ended up with my first catch. It was amazing. I'm still processing though.
I bet that was just awesome. Not only is it your first catch, but a dear friend, that's great.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
Can you talk to me a little more about this. It seems that moms in hospital settings need the most support.

That is true... but it also takes a special person to attend birth after birth in a setting that is fraught with interventions and battles.


: my news... (no, I'm not pg! ) is that I mailed my Orientation packet. Now that all those assignments are out of my hands, I'm soooo nervous.
post #1644 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by busybusymomma View Post
I believe, like you, that they are complementary... yet I don't like how some believe a mw has to have started as a doula. I've been hired as a doula but most of my "doula" births have been accompanying transport clients so I switch from mw asst to doula. I do think a few births at the local hospital can be helpful for just that, but you can leave that by accompanying your preceptor to transports. I think one can be an awesome midwife without having been a doula.
I don't think a M/W needs to be a doula first, just that it helps- it can be a complementary part of a practice- just as extensive breastfeeding support will be helpful, hands on training specific to labor support is really helpful. Especially if you only work with midwives who don't do much labor support for their clients, as many midwives are. (not saying that is bad- just that is the way lots of m/w are)

I do think a midwife needs more then a few hospital births though- I think it takes many many births to have the necessary experiences to be able to confidently transfer your clients and prepare them for they type of care they will recieve. I plan to do some tpe of hospital study as a part of my apprenticeship/clinical training. I want to be able to see the abnormal so I will be confident in my ability to identify when something is wrong, I want to be able to prepare my clients for the realities of a D&C should they chose that after a miscarriage, and I want them to understand what happens durring a Cesarean, or what the NICU is like. I think those types of things are really important. Those aren't necessary- just something that I feel is really important to know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by busybusymomma View Post
That is true... but it also takes a special person to attend birth after birth in a setting that is fraught with interventions and battles.
I'd have never imagined how hard it is to support women in the hospital. But it really is where support is most needed. I feel like it is the most special to be there- even more special then homebirth. I don't think I could do it forever though.
post #1645 of 1798
Synchro.... how exciting!!! Were you shaking? LOL

Busybusy, what a relief to get it out of your hands though. How long did it take you to complete? How many hours did it take you?

As for doula and then midwife, I wanted to be a midwife first and foremost. I became a doula because I wanted to "with woman" in any way I could, and that was the best way for my situation. I have not been to many births as a doula but it still gets me around birth regardless of the location or how the birth ends up. A lot of reading and research I do for doula/CBE training and now LC training is parallel to my midwifery studies. I think it would be great to do doula work, make a little money, be around birth, learn how to support women as you would as a midwife. You don't have to be a doula first but it can be beneficial. Also, doing doula work really solidified that yes, I really do want to be a midwife. I can handle the off hours, the gunk, etc and I love it.
post #1646 of 1798
For me...I knew that I wanted to be a midwife, but was doing doula and cbe work first, and then an apprenticeship fell into my lap. And I was STILL not ready to be a midwife. Something just clicked recently, and I would be okay walking into it today, were I ready educationally. I was not emotionally ready--BAM! Now I am. BUT doula work has taught me so much about being with woman...and did keep me "in" the birth world till I could feel confident to be there myself.

I think that being with women while they are in the hospital...being able to see their vulnerability in a way that it isn't quite so starkly exposed in most of the homebirths I've attended, has made me better at what I do in homebirths. It has definately made me so much more aware of the difference in the way women act when they are in a birth that has been intervened in as opposed to one that has not.
post #1647 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaRabbit View Post
Synchro.... how exciting!!! Were you shaking? LOL
Oh yeah. The shakes weren't happening when I needed to operate, but in any still moment they happened. They peaked right after the baby was out and breathing well. Wooof. I'm half over joyed and half freaked out and in disbelief.
Thanks for all the congrats :
post #1648 of 1798
one more from me:
congrats synchro!
how wonderful
post #1649 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
Can you talk to me a little more about this. It seems that moms in hospital settings need the most support.
I completely agree birthing women in hospitals do need to most support but I don't think it's something I could do on a regular basis. I couldn't make a career of it. It's a hard job, and the women that do it are INCREDIBLE. For me, I can't work in the hospital system that so desperately needs to be changed because I don't believe I'm in a position or the person to change it. If someone asked me to be labor support I'd be there because I want to be "with woman" but I struggle with the idea of supporting a woman (normal, healthy, low-risk) that wants an intervention free birth and regardless of information shared with her and having her choose the interventionist OB, and the high epi/pit usage/c-section rate hospital. Hopefully that makes sense, and hopefully I didn't offend any doulas
post #1650 of 1798
Well I can say from my own experience that I would have LOVED a doula for my 3 very medicalized births. I relied on my intervention pushing doctor to tell me the truth and to do what was in mine and my baby's best interest. Of course, you all know where that road can lead. It's my own fault for not looking into this beforehand (and then being browbeat and intimidated into not having a homebirth with my last baby) but I honestly didn't even know what a doula was at the time.

It's too bad that birthing women dont' get assigned a doula at their first prenatal appointments. Could you imagine how that would change things?


post #1651 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nursingmama05 View Post
I completely agree birthing women in hospitals do need to most support but I don't think it's something I could do on a regular basis. I couldn't make a career of it. It's a hard job, and the women that do it are INCREDIBLE. For me, I can't work in the hospital system that so desperately needs to be changed because I don't believe I'm in a position or the person to change it. If someone asked me to be labor support I'd be there because I want to be "with woman" but I struggle with the idea of supporting a woman (normal, healthy, low-risk) that wants an intervention free birth and regardless of information shared with her and having her choose the interventionist OB, and the high epi/pit usage/c-section rate hospital. Hopefully that makes sense, and hopefully I didn't offend any doulas
I'm not offended- I think it's really great for you to know what is out of your comfort zone.
post #1652 of 1798
busybusy, congratulations on finishing your orientation! How does it feel?

I've done labor support before - home and hospital. I have really enjoyed it. I think I was an asset to the women. I'm not personally interested in obtaining doula cert. at this time. My heart is in midwifery, so that is where I'm putting my energy. I think seeing how hospital births work is valuable. I love supporting women in their births and will continue to do so if asked. I'm just not going to start a doula business. I have a lady who is due in March who wants me to be there, several of my friends want me there in the future, etc. I would really like to do volunteer labor support for teen moms, women in need, etc. Hopefully I can do it down the road.

Just my two cents. I don't think you have to be a doula before becoming a midwife. I don't think it's harmful if you do or don't. Everyone's path is different!
post #1653 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by 636Jen View Post
It's too bad that birthing women dont' get assigned a doula at their first prenatal appointments. Could you imagine how that would change things?
That would be a wonderful thing, I think it would greatly change birth, and even the pregnancy.
post #1654 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nursingmama05 View Post
I don't believe she meant it as a career choice (ie, be doula, then be midwife) but it was meant as women who are midwives/apprentices/assistants need to take the role of doula (labor supporter, friend, massager, pep talker, etc) first to their laboring cleints and step in with their midwifery skills when the need arises.
This is exactly what I was trying to say. I guess I did not word it well enough.

When I said that I believe midwives should be doulas first and foremost, I did not mean that midwives should work as doulas before becoming midwives. I meant that midwives, in my opinion, should assist all their births as doulas do, and then use their midwifery skills when/if needed.

I guess this comes from my huge support for unassisted childbirth, and my siding with Michel Odent when it comes to the role of a midwife as being quiet, observant, and respectful of the birthing process while the woman gives birth, and then using her midwifery skills only if the need arises. I believe mostly in unhindered birth.

Am I making sense? I'm pretty exhausted lately.
post #1655 of 1798
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaRabbit View Post
Busybusy, what a relief to get it out of your hands though. How long did it take you to complete? How many hours did it take you?
It took me 3.5 months... I was literally just about 10 hours of work away from being done at 3 months but I had a lot of trouble concentrating for a couple of weeks due to MIL's health issues and a lot going on my family. And my MIL's health just continues to get more convoluted. On top of consulting with a geriatrician, general surgeon (mass on her spleen) and GYN (suspicious looking mass on one ovary)... today I had to take her to an ENT because she has an egg sized swelling of her left submandibular gland and because of the other issues she has they are doing a fine needle aspiration Monday am. Because of her dementia, I have to take her to these appointments or else she can't even tell you an hour later what they said. I swear... this is NOT the terminology I intended to be learning!

Oh- the hours? I'm not sure. I forgot to start taking track in the beginning so I just guessed 100 hours but I have no idea if that's even close?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cfiddlinmama View Post
busybusy, congratulations on finishing your orientation! How does it feel?
Excited and so nervous that I missed something. I went over my list several times... but you know how it is (at least for me) after I read something so many times I find myself more likely to miss something. So finally I decided that was as good as it's going to get. I'm glad I was able to submit it before Lori's vacation. :
post #1656 of 1798
I am a doula and have been for about 5 years now. I am not offended by the comments at all, can't see why I would have been...
Anyway, I have a really hard time with LOW risk women being in the hospital most of the time.
Some women are strong enough to withstand the onslaught of continued harranguing, begging, pleading, authoritarian fingerpointing and/or the dead baby card being played by their care providers. This happens more than I care to think about, especially at our more provincial, outlying hospitals. There is unfortunately, very little support for natural birth or non interventive birth at some hospitals. It can be very very difficult for the mom, even WITH a doula, to make the decisions that may be best for her and her family.
Personally, I do not much enjoy doing hospital births anymore. I still feel joy for my clients and amazement at the miracle of birth, but it is overshadowed often by the constant insistant interruptions and interventions. Often the mother sighs and just shrugs her shoulders and gives up and submits to the careproviders who have repeatedly ignored or argued with her requests for non-intervention or other reasonable requests. There is only so much you can listen to and they often "wear them down". My position is often more tenuous at some hospitals, because they can "throw me out" if they percieve me as being troublesome. This is not all docs, nor all hospitals, but I do have to be careful and I am not able to speak my mind to the other careproviders. This isn't really my place anyway, but to inform and support the parents in their decisions, but often, if they are dealing with overbearing nurses or docs, my calm quiet voice of support for their decisions is overridden by the strident voice of the fear of the dead baby, or the fear of pain, or simply the fear of the birth process itself, which manifests itself in the careproviders wanting to "DO" something all the time, and their seemingly pathological inability to wait.

ANyway, I know I'm going off on a rant.
I don't think you HAVE to be a doula to be an excellent midwife. If you KNOW you want to be a midwife and you don't have doubts or things that you need to clarify, then just go for the midwifery route. If you need to earn money while studying, postpartum services might be actually MORE lucrative without the uncertanty of being on call a lot.
For example, in my area doulas charge about $450 total.
I can make $595 in one week doing postpartum work.
No on call, no concerns about unexpected travel, childcare costs, issues about illness or whether I'll make it to the birth.
For $450 I spend about 60 hours with the client, either on the phone or in person, mostly in person.
For the $595 a week, I have set hours and know when I'll be home. And I only work 40 hours a week, normally.

Drawback is that I don't get to attend the birth. BUT I'm funding my midwifery studies with postpartum work now and it's working well.
Since I'm apprenticing and still able to attend births, my favorite kind, home births, I feel like I have the best of both worlds.

If you're interested in PPD work, I think the best preparations are a solid knowledge of breastfeeding, bottlefeeding, basic babycare, swaddling, techniques for calming babies, ability to demonstrate proper babywearing, bathing, grooming (cutting fingernails, for ex.) and an ability to exude confidence and instill confidence in your mom about her own abilities.
Also, being able to always reference your advice, like I will say that an alternative vaccine schedule might be right for you, mrs. ppd client, and here's the book where I found helpful information. (or the website or the other qualified careprovider)
Parents who are besieged from all sides with conflicting advice and information like to have a calm confident voice to help them navigate and best decide what works for them.

just WAY more than my two cents!
lol

- Jen
:
post #1657 of 1798
Thank you ladies, for all your thoughtful responses to my question. I think the universe is trying to tell me something about my studies right now... I got laid off this morning. So I spent today looking for a new job and going over the budget, doing some cleaning, tomorrow will be full of doctor's visits, and the rest of the month is going to be for study time.

Since you all had such deep thoughts about my earlier question, how about another?

What are your thoughts regarding IBCLC certification? Looking it over, accruing 1000 hours in order to be able to even take the test must be extremely prohibitive (in a society so anti-BF)... is it worth it? Is there another path to being an LC, or does certification even matter with LC?
post #1658 of 1798
cristeen, i have seen horrible IBCLC's and great ones. Sometimes (just like doula, CBE, etc,) certification means nothing. It's difficult to get in the needed hours if not in a hospital or WIC setting also.

I decided to pursue being CLC - certified lactation counselor with CBI. It's a new program and so far it's great. Obviously it's not the level of IBCLC but I'm smart and I can read! If it's a situation I can't help solve then I can refer to an LC.

fairydoula, PP help is a great way to fund your studies w/o being on call. That's one reason i"m pursuing the CLC and then teach CBE classes. Sometimes when I get home from teaching CBE, I tell my husband, well that session just paid for a few of my books!
post #1659 of 1798
So~ Who are you planning to apprentice with? Not necessarily specific people, but what types of people, with what types of personalities and what types of practices? How many professionals do you expect to work with?

I'm curious about what different student or aspiring midwives plan for their clinical/observation skills. Why do you want the specific type of experiences you plan to get? How do you expect to practice when you finish (number of births a month, home, birth center)?

As for me- I plan to do the bulk of my apprenticeship in a Birth center/homebirth practice with 2 midwives and a medium volume of clients (7-12 a month) and growing. They're practical, very well trained and have a gentle but not super hands off style. I also want to apprentice with at least 3 other midwives in my area (or in FL), whether in homebirth or birthcenter practice. I want to observe (or participate if possible) with a hospital CNM, as well as a nurse. I'd also like to get some experience with someone dealing with high risk patients, especially infants- maybe a nicu ped. I would also like to travel for a short apprenticeship or two to other states, specifically OR.

I would like to apprentice with at least 6 people, with the majority being at home, but with some experience in the hospital. I think for me it's very important to have these types of experiences. I plan to work in a birthcenter/homebirth practice with a fair amount of clients, I expect to personally attend to around 4-6+ births a month.
post #1660 of 1798
I'm always late on discussions in this thread, but wanted to comment on doulas working in hospitals. I have been a doula for almost 7 years and in my case, my doula work led me to midwifery. I am thankful for the work I have had as a doula as I have learned a lot....mostly what not to do, how not to treat laboring women. But doula work is no longer for me. Not because I don't need the income or think I do it well, but because it is no longer in mine or my family's best interest. Perhaps if I were better able to separate myself from what I witness, it would be alright. However, I am no longer suited to stand by helplessly and watch women be assaulted by their providers, hospital staff, etc. It affects me deeply, which means it also affects my family.

I began to consider midwifery several years ago, but a series of births led me to pursue it sooner rather than later. After attending 3 very abusive births in a row, I was done. I tried limiting which hospitals I would go to and while that helped some, I still wasn't excited about going to hospital births. Every time I got the call, I had a real sense of dread....another sign it's time to quit. After the birth of my youngest in March, I narrowed my potential client pool further by only attending births w/specific providers, friends and those that found me through a friend. My pool continues to get smaller.....now I am down to friends, repeats and family.

However, I do enjoy teaching and have been doing so for almost 4 yrs now. It allows me the opportunity to provide families with tons of information w/out actually having to be there for the trainwrecks. I love the "a-ha" moments when women are able to take in info and come to their own conclusions. I have watched unmarried, teen moms make the tough decision to go against family advice and change to a MIDWIFE, change hospital, learn waterbirth is an option, choose to vbac when they didn't think they could. I have had young, older, married and unmarried, grandmothers, cousins, sisters, VBAC's, twin parents, first-timers and 4th timers...in class. It's very fulfilling.

Winding up my wordy post, I have always believed in a doula for every woman, but I don't believe I have to be that doula. Just like I believe that women in the high intervention situations need a doula and deserve one as well, doesn't mean I have to be her. We all have to do what works best for us and our families and for me it means staying out of situations that will cause me tons of anxiety.
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