I got to know my midwife through the concurrent care of sorts that I sought when I was about 30 weeks pregnant. She listened—really listened—to me ramble incessantly about birth, fears, health and everything else. While she was not one of the midwives present at the birth of my daughter, it was she who visited me a week after birth, answered e-mails and calls. She’s also hilarious, ridiculously smart and a great friend.
My midwife is the reason I truly understand the first line of the definition of the Midwives Model of Care: “Monitoring the physical, psychological, and social well-being of the mother throughout the childbearing cycle.” The childbearing cycle doesn’t just pause itself for six weeks following birth and then end after a quick six-week check-up in an institution. Even if birth is easy, I believe that childbirth is still a traumatic stressor in that it is a major life change. Positive changes in life cause stress, too. Coupled with loss of sleep, change in lifestyle and physical recovery, the need for support after birth is not something that can be downplayed. Institutions, even birth centers, aren’t typically set up to provide as much continuous one-on-one care as home birth midwives do.
Here is the classy conversation I had with my midwife after my daughter turned one:
Me: Thanks for giving a shit.
Midwife: That’s what humans do.
Giving birth in an institution? Seek the concurrent care of a home birth midwife.
Or just stay home.
Since I’m handing out Valentines, here’s one that needs no explanation:
I can’t imagine how long it took do all of the research for Pushed. Thanks.
I just finished Misconceptions. It makes me happy to know that there are people out there who can say so eloquently that which I struggle to bark, blurt and babble. Thank you for trying to define where feminism and motherhood intersect.
Happy Valentine's Day.