Monday, September 10, 2012

my pregnancy with ember: meeting sarah.

So I actually had to go back through my older emails to get the dates right for this.

And I have to go back, past the last post, for just a bit, so bear with me.

My next scheduled appointment at the office was at the end of December. I had three visits before then, the first in September, the next in October and the last in November. Neil ended up getting laid off the week of the appointment and I remember that there was a lot going on with the holidays and just... stress. I didn't go to the appointment.

When I called to reschedule, in early January, I was informed that my nurse midwife would not be back until February. I was a little more than shocked by this. I actually remember that I didn't have a clue what to say. I made an appointment anyways, I remember that she made it with an OB, which I wasn't thrilled about. I never said anything, I just let her make the appointment and then I got off the phone. I remember asking myself over and over why I even made the appointment, because knowing myself, I probably would not go at all. I didn't.

I felt more than a little bothered that I wasn't told once that my midwife would be taking such a long break, that I would have to just start seeing a stranger for awhile. From what I have read and heard, this can happen. It's normal. I think it's weird.

Now to back up even further.
I knew when I was pregnant the first time that I wanted to give birth at home, as long as I was a healthy candidate to do so. I have a whole other blog post coming soon, with the whys, and the reactions, both good and bad. For right now, I want to say, very clearly, that the reason I wanted to give birth at home had everything to do with my own research. Hours and hours and hours of research. I made this decision based on all the facts. I made this decision because I wanted to do the very best both for the physical and emotional health of my daughter and myself. It was what, after going over all the options, felt like the best for my family.
But like I said, I have another post coming soon with more about that.

So, knowing that I wanted to give birth at home, I knew at some point I would stop going to the office, hire a  homebirth midwife and move forward from there. Finding out that the nurse midwife I was seeing and felt comfortable with was gone, with no prior warning, bothered me enough to know that it was time. I had remained quite relaxed about doing this in those first few months, simply just attending the office I attended after the miscarriage, and simply just trying to get through morning sickness, anxiety, fear and the unknown. The recent ultrasound was the real push that made me want to kick everything in to gear and start getting ready for this baby. Skipping my next appointment really hit it home to me that it was time to make different care arrangements.

I contacted Sarah the first time in the middle of January. She was a doula/had assisted the birth of my cousin's daughter, and was someone my cousin's wife highly recommended. I didn't have near the information that I have now about home birth professionals in my area, so contacting her was my biggest hope for any information!

When I first emailed her, I was simply inquiring for information about her doula services, and if she could give me contact information for homebirth midwives. Come to find out, she was transitioning to becoming a midwife herself, and would be getting her certification soon. She did give me information for other midwives. I really just felt like I needed to meet with her though. I felt really strongly about it. We wrote back and forth, I ended up spilling my guts about my miscarriage, past experiences, pretty much my WHOLE life, which is a bad habit I have. You know that person that you're not totally comfortable with yet, who starts telling you their life story? In my most anxious moments... yeah, that's me. It's like... "oooohhh, you're really nice! I'm going to tell you EVERYTHING."
We set up a meeting in early February, which was a huge relief. I was so excited and so completely nervous.

I remember I was shaking like a leaf when she arrived.
I remember thinking she was beautiful when she walked in the door. Like, straight from inside out, beautiful.
I remember that she immediately made herself comfortable and I didn't feel as embarrassed as I usually do about the house.
I remember that trying to get my blood pressure was ridiculous, I was that nervous.
I remember that Neil did not say very much.
I remember thinking that she probably thought we were terrible candidates.
I remember that my nosy cat did not bother her.
I remember her saying everything so perfectly and so honestly.
I remember her giving us both a hug before she left.
I remember that after she left I wished I would have just told her I wanted her to be our midwife right away instead of trying to do the whole "we'll think/talk about it and let you know" bit.
I remember feeling like this woman was one of the most amazing people I would ever get to meet in my lifetime.

When Sarah left, Neil immediately said, "I like her, let's hire her." That's Neil for ya. I said something about how we should wait a couple days and then contact her, at least act like we had a long conversation about it or something. We never really did. We both pretty much made up our minds.

I remember when I emailed her, I felt so vulnerable about it, because you know, she could decline us just as much as we could decline her. And that's important. Just as much as we should work with someone we feel good about, she should feel good about the families she's working with.
I felt like, when composing the email, that I was proposing or something. "Will you be our midwife?" Ha. I felt that strongly about her.

I have never, ever, not once regretted trusting Sarah to be our midwife.

my pregnancy with ember: meeting sarah.
(After Ember was born, looking her over while I held her.)

I will admit, sometimes I'm a bit in awe of her. She's a very inspiring person to be around, in some ways I'm always feeling like a giant dork around her. But when it came to trusting her with my body, my baby, and my self? Never once ever wavered.
That is huge to me. That is special to me. That is something I wish for every single birthing woman in the entire world.

These posts are starting to wrap up now, and I'm excited to finally see them through, much later than planned. I have so much more to say about our midwife and Ember's birth. But for now, I just really wanted to reflect on that first meeting and why we love Sarah.

I gave Sarah a card recently, that had a beekeeper with his bees on the front. On the inside, it says something like "if you're calm, the bees will be calm."
And that's Sarah.
And I was a bee.

(I've linked it already in this post, but just in case, here is Sarah's website and facebook page.)

1 comment:

  1. Congrats to you and your family! My dad is a bee keeper, so you hit the nail on its head with that saying.
    Thanks for sharing Ember's birth story. I unfortunately had little choice in how my boys were born...went to Lamaze classes with hubby, only to find out right before D-day that a C-section will be required.