spinoff: midwife gifts? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 12:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, reading the thread about L&D gifts makes me wonder about MW gifts. Honestly it all makes me a little uncomfortable. I think I am often awkward about receiving gifts so maybe its just my issue. But I also hate giving things that are unneeded or unwanted. It feels wasteful to me. Even though I realize people generally appreciate the impulse. I am also a little-- socially awkward is not exactly the right term. I am just not one of those people that makes instant BFFs. So I have great working relationships with people like midwives, teachers, etc, but we aren't going out for mani-pedis together or anything.

 

Now I wonder what other people do. I am low income (and the MWs know it, since they accept my medicaid), and frankly in the PP time I just can barely keep myself and my kids together, let alone be making or shopping for gifts (that I can't afford) for people I only know in a very limited way.

 

With my second I had a HB. We offered theater tickets to the MWs (my husband worked in the props department at a great regional theater and could get free tickets that were excellent seats, like 3rd row center) but the MWs didn't really seem interested. They never took us up on it. Then, since I knew my MW was gluten free and eating fairly low carb, I asked her would she like a chocolate-tofu pie in a nut crust (homemade) and she said YES very emphatically, so I dropped one off at her office one day. (We had talked food a lot b/c of my diet-controlled GD.)

 

Of course, I will have good food and beverages stocked in the house and if I were to have a long labor I would also order in more for the whole birth team. My mom lives upstairs and I know she would also be sure everyone is being fed well. I'll make sure we have the takeout menus handy for local places (one good thing about NYC is you can have almost anything delivered). But, last time my MWs were there for only a few hours- baby was born about 10 minutes after they walked in the door. They seemed awfully happy that they got to go home at 8PM and other than grabbing a few snacks (I think) they were focused on working not eating.

 

DH now works in the visual display department at a fairly high end (and very nice) women's clothing and house goods company and gets a significant discount, so we could get them something from there. But it feels so funny to be shopping for people whose personal taste we don't really know. Meh. Maybe I will go down there some time and look around to see if I am inspired. They do have lots of interesting things so something might jump out at us.

 

I know one of the MWs is insulin resistant and has a very careful diet (we've discussed diet at some length due to my own diet as well) so sweets wouldn't be a very thoughtful gift!

 

Or just flowers for their office when I make my 6 week visit?

 

 


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#2 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 12:18 PM
 
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I think just a simple thank you card is fine, really!


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#3 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 12:31 PM
 
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I always do something for my midwives-but it's pretty easy because I'm the owner of Bloomin' Belly Soaps, so I have lots of readily available options. This year though, I'm planning to buy a cloth sling for their homebirth hanging scale-I've seen several on Etsy....

 

Handmade items are always nice-and I agree that cards are a thoughtful way to communicate gratitude without it costing a lot of money.;)

 

I would imagine that midwives don't attend a lot of shows-their schedules are so hectic...but yummo on the homemade treats!! :)

 

Marcie


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#4 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 12:33 PM
 
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That's what I did too, Marcie...I made something. I'm an illustrator and I make and design rubber stamps...so I made one of her initials, like a bookplate, or something like that. (I actually dont' remember what it was, exactly..haha. Had something to do with midwifery though.)


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#5 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 12:44 PM
 
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Thanks for starting this emmaegbert.  This is precisely and exactly my question. 

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#6 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 01:31 PM
 
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As a midwife, I surely don't expec anything.
I do really like cards and baby pics, tho. Especially if you keep me on your card list and I get Xmas pictures! I love seeing the babies grow.
If your midwife is on yelp, yelp her if you're happy.

Gifts I know have been appreciated by my midwife friends: neato socks, gas cards, canned goods, herbs, game meat.

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#7 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 01:34 PM
 
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I found an medical text on childbirth  from the turn of the century that was full of hilarious and terrifying "information" and photographs.  It only cost me a couple of dollars and my midwife loved it.

 

I think a card is fine and flowers would be lovely.

 

 

 


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#8 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 02:27 PM
 
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I think a card would be wonderful and that is probably what I will do :) :) :)   And some flowers if you want to, actually I think I would give a potted plant instead of cut flowers.  

 

This just gave me an idea....   I think the kids can paint a pot for the plant ($1.50 from Dollarama) and then we will get a plant, put it in there and I'll make a card.   It should cost me less than $5.

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#9 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 04:16 PM
 
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I've never done a midwife gift before, but I've seen the idea often enough that I've been considering it this time around.  I've toyed with the idea of making a needle-felted soap with some sort of midwife-friendly picture.  I just did my first needle-felted soap this summer and it was fun and relaxing and turned out so cute!  But I'm having trouble thinking of a picture that would be easy enough to pull off, lol.  If nothing else, I'll probably get around to a card and a picture.  I always love walking into a midwife's office and seeing a bulletin board FULL of baby pictures that they've helped deliver.  :)


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#10 of 21 Old 09-09-2011, 07:38 PM
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I am planning to donate to an international group that trains midwives in developing countries in honour of my midwives and doula. And of course give them a card, photos of baby, etc.


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#11 of 21 Old 09-10-2011, 08:47 AM
 
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Lovely ~pi!  Any chance you'd say which group you like?

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#12 of 21 Old 09-10-2011, 09:45 AM
 
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What a wonderful idea, Pi!!!

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#13 of 21 Old 09-10-2011, 10:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks all, seems like I am not too out of line with my lack of much gift-giving. We did write thank you cards in the past, and I do the same for my kids teachers, etc. My IRL friends who are teachers always say that they do truly appreciate that, especially when the message is specific and personal. Maybe the olders will be interested in making a drawing or card themselves as well. I do assume that HBMWs are sensitive about what its like to be a PP mama, and don't expect us to be whipping up Etsy-ready gift baskets for our 6w appts!

 

(and we knew that HB midwives probably can't really make big plans to go to shows... actually b/c DH worked there it was easy to get last minute tickets, which we told them... but anyway it wasn't a gift that really worked for them)

 

I never even managed a printed baby announcement for my other kids, but maybe we'll get that done this time. In which case of course I will include my current (and former!) MWs (we moved across the country, the only reason we've switched MWs is that the others didn't want to relocate!)

 

I like the idea of old medical texts! How funny. I will keep my eyes open for midwife-related things over the next 2 months, if something fun crosses my path I can snap it up.


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#14 of 21 Old 09-10-2011, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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and lol Jane, we are vegetarians who live in manhattan, so definitely no game meat coming from us :)

 

but maybe I'll make extra of my grain-free granola (one of the pair of MWs is on a pretty strict low/no grain/carb diet) to give as a little gift with cards and a plant/flowers. That's not really any extra work for me since its something I do every month or two anyway. Heck I can do it ahead of time.

 

Occasionally I do email a snapshot of the kids to our previous MW too, I assume that its fun for her to see the kids growing up and we're out of town now so we're not going to run into her.


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#15 of 21 Old 09-10-2011, 02:13 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabesgrrrl View Post

I always do something for my midwives-but it's pretty easy because I'm the owner of Bloomin' Belly Soaps, so I have lots of readily available options. This year though, I'm planning to buy a cloth sling for their homebirth hanging scale-I've seen several on Etsy....

 

Handmade items are always nice-and I agree that cards are a thoughtful way to communicate gratitude without it costing a lot of money.;)

 

I would imagine that midwives don't attend a lot of shows-their schedules are so hectic...but yummo on the homemade treats!! :)

 

Marcie


Whoa, the owner of Bloomin Belly Soaps is right here on this message board? Very cool. I've never ordered from you but recommended my best friend's mom buy some for her baby shower and they were a big hit. And, when I was planning a homebirth with our last, I thought a couple of those soaps would be the perfect gift for our midwife.

 

Anyway, emmaegbert, if you are happy with their care after the fact I think a heartfelt note/card would be more than enough. If you wanted to add something homebaked when you go in postpartum, that would be nice too, but not necessary.

 

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#16 of 21 Old 09-10-2011, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by puente View Post

Lovely ~pi!  Any chance you'd say which group you like?



I was planning on giving to Oxfam, though I just went to get the link and while the US version still has the training midwives focus, it's gone from the Canadian list of initiatives, so I may rethink which group.

 

I know that CARE also does some work in this area, and Plan used to, but it doesn't look like they do it anymore.


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#17 of 21 Old 09-11-2011, 07:33 AM
 
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lol...yup right here and pregnant as can be.:) Thanks so much for the "love"...it's more a hobby than a business, and I love my "Mamas in Bloom".:) I'm glad they were a hit! xoxox


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#18 of 21 Old 09-11-2011, 09:23 PM
 
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I think I'm going to bake up some stuff for them to at least have while they're here. I need to ask about food preferences, etc.


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#19 of 21 Old 09-11-2011, 10:08 PM
 
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Sigh.  I think about this way too much.  I have a lot of guilt about not giving a thank you gift or message last time. I meant to bake a gluten-free lasagna for my birth team last time and drop it off on one of their office days so that the whole clinic of midwives could enjoy it.  Didn't do it.  Meant to give a picture of dd ... didn't.  Meant to donate on their behalf ... didn't.  Meant to send a thank you note ... didn't. 

This time around I haven't made the same connection with this team as the one we had with dd.  I don't even particularly like a couple of them and am actively hoping they're not on call for my birth.  I'm not enjoying the midwife experience this time.  I feel like I'm dealing with medwives, and not midwives. 

I do want to do something to thank my first midwife (yes, nearly three years later).  She and her partner are starting a new practice in a new town, so I may make a framed piece of art.  We've become friends over the years, and I consider her personally responsible for resuscitating my daughter, for which I am so thankful. 

Perhaps I'll feel the connection after the birth.  I've been scoping out the art in the clinic and thinking an artful image might have a home there.

Geez, sorry for the ramble, folks.  Obviously I've got some baggage around this.  As a paramedic, we can't accept thank you gifts. Even if we've literally saved someone's life. 


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#20 of 21 Old 09-12-2011, 06:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Starling&Diesel: first off, I think you can give a note now too, even 3 years later. Don't feel guilty! I have never done what I meant to do in this regard, but I've got to trust that MWs understand- perhaps better than we do the first time around- how dramatically life changes after the birth.

 

as for medwives/midwives. My first child that was kind of the scenario (honestly I didn't know better! I had no idea that I had much choice in the matter and was just glad to have midwives at all and not only OBs), and in the end, I had an amazing MW on call when I delivered who was a former HBMW and was just gentle, calm, and very low-key, and I really experienced a great birth with her. And she was so funny and interesting to talk to in those first PP hours. so, it can happen even in those kinds of practices.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by starling&diesel View Post

Sigh.  I think about this way too much.  I have a lot of guilt about not giving a thank you gift or message last time. I meant to bake a gluten-free lasagna for my birth team last time and drop it off on one of their office days so that the whole clinic of midwives could enjoy it.  Didn't do it.  Meant to give a picture of dd ... didn't.  Meant to donate on their behalf ... didn't.  Meant to send a thank you note ... didn't. 

This time around I haven't made the same connection with this team as the one we had with dd.  I don't even particularly like a couple of them and am actively hoping they're not on call for my birth.  I'm not enjoying the midwife experience this time.  I feel like I'm dealing with medwives, and not midwives.


 


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#21 of 21 Old 09-14-2011, 11:24 AM
 
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I think a homemade card with a picture of the baby...and perhaps even a shot with the midwife in there too....along with a heartfelt, sincere thank you note is a totally appropriate way to show appreciation.  I work in healthcare and it's a personal sincere note that touches me the most (and I don't have to worry about any conflict of interest in accepting "gifts").  

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