Thursday, January 10, 2013

33 Weeks: Midwife vs. Doctor

After realizing my doctor might not be on the same page about my wanting an unmedicated, natural birth - especially after being diagnosed with GD, my husband and I immediately began searching for other options. I know it's harder said than done to plan a birth; many things can go wrong, and circumstances change. But I know what I want is possible, and I want to surround myself with a supportive group of people who can cheer me on through the challenging process, rather than arguing my case with an opposing team while I'm in pain.

To be clear tho, I think my (now previous) doctor is lovely and competent. She just seems to have a different philosophy about this whole process compared to what I want. As they say, we're not a good fit. So I've made the decision to move on, even if I only have 4 weeks until full term - better late than never.

Finding a new care provider is always a bit of an uncomfortable transition, starting from having to ask the old doctor to release your medical records to the new caregiver. The patient doesn't owe an explanation, but it could still feel awkward. There was also a part of me that couldn't quite decide if I was overreacting and blowing things out of proportion. But after many discussions with my husband, who agrees with me a hundred percent (I was pleasantly surprised), and friends and family members with similar philosophies and experiences, I decided to bite the bullet. The end result was much better than expected. I'm happy with my new direction, and everything ended on a positive note with my previous doctor, who called me in person to help me tie up the logistical loose ends and wished me good luck.

We had 4 consultations/meet-and-greet scheduled throughout this week and next for two OBs and two midwiferies, but we were sold at our first meeting. As of yesterday, we have made our decision.

Initially, this one specific holistic doctor was my first choice because of the MD title - also she's in-network with our insurance. I liked that she could do everything herself if anything went wrong, yet she advocates the natural birthing process. However, the more I think about what I want, I realize the important aspect of what I'm looking for is in the process of labor, for which a doctor cannot be present at all times.

A midwife, on the other hand, is more hands-on during the often long hours of labor. Midwives are trained professionals who are knowledgeable about the natural birthing process, capable of handling any normal childbirth situations. Assuming the pregnant woman is healthy and has no complications, a midwife is more than capable of delivering a baby.

When we went to our meet-and-greet, I was a bit grumpy while in the waiting room because we had just spent an hour driving (there are no midwiferies in our neighborhood) and almost another hour waiting. But once we were in the room with one of the midwives and her student, I was immediately smitten. I have heard so many great things about having a midwife instead of a doctor, but I was never quite convinced I wanted one for myself. But after talking to this woman for what was about an hour, I was ready to commit. My husband apparently felt the same way. The time we spent in the waiting room no longer was an issue, and we kept saying to each other on our way back home, "I think this is it."

After lengthy discussions with my husband - he and I both trying to play the devil's advocate for many hours, we have decided to go with the Midwifery. We went through pros and cons of all our options, eventually canceling the rest of the appointments. Considering I'm already at 33 weeks, we thought there is no time to waste, especially if we love this midwifery as much as we do. We have our first official appointment early next week, and I'm actually excited about it.

We'll be delivering at a hospital. This midwifery is affiliated with a hospital, where two OBs work as their backups in cases of emergency. They also provide doulas if I want an extra pair of hands in the room. I love the idea of having a group of experienced women by my side throughout my labor until the baby comes. They will take care of me in ways a doctor cannot. But of course, if a doctor is needed, she or he will be there too. In the next few weeks, I will spend a lot of time with the three midwives, one of whom will be at my birth. They're full of information they want to share, which will help me prepare for the birth both physically and mentally. It doesn't hurt that they are also all trained RNs; one of them is also a lactation consultant. With this group of compassionate and competent women whose lives are dedicated to women's birthing process, I am confident my experience can be a positive one, albeit not painless.

PHOTO at 33 weeks:
I'm going through that phase where the baby is pushing on my stomach and intestines; I can't enjoy eating. It's like I've lost my ability to digest. They say it gets better once the baby "drops." And my sister says, "eating feel awesome once the baby comes out." :)

In terms of her positioning, she seems to be moving around a lot more than before and hasn't really settled into one spot, which is good. The shape of my belly changes a lot, depending on what she's doing.

No comments:

Post a Comment