I had a hospital birth for #1, UC for #2, and car birth for #3. I had a mw during that pregnancy, but when my water released 7 days before labor began, my midwife (German) had to release *me* from her care, so I was going to wait until the last minute and go to the military hospital, birth and go back home.
I chose to have a mw mostly because #2 (who is 21 years old now) was a severe shoulder dystocia and required EMS assist to get going - horrifying experience and I definitely got scared. Because my former husband was in the military, they flipped out, too, and the CPS-equivalent (in Tacoma, WA) did come and investigate our family, but we were exonerated.
With #3, I labored solo - and LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEEDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD it. I do *not* like to be touched in labor, or told what to do, and I learned that during the first two babies' births. Aimee was a car baby, we stayed at the hospital for 3 hours and went home, without checking out AMA (important to my former husband).
(A tiny aside: because I *did* birth in the car, at the foot of labor & delivery... because I negotiated an incredible birth plan with all parties involved, unheard of at the time... because LLL friends who'd just had babies watched from the day room... because I was known at the hospital as a doula [even though there was no such word or thing at the time]... because I taught childbirth classes and was a LLL leader in the community... word spread like wildfire in childbirth classes and mom's support groups and the woman I was "destined" to meet came to a LLL meeting 2 days after Aimee was born *specifically* to meet me (her cb teacher raved about my experience) so I could help her choreograph her perfect birth. She and I have been partners for 20 years now. :LOL So, while it might not have been my Perfect Birth, there were MANY aspects at play I never could have anticipated when I chose a midwife earlier in the pregnancy.)
I learned a lot from my own births, but continue learning. Always learning.
Barbara E. Herrera, LM, CPM