On Monday, went and met with our first midwife candidate. Her office is kind of a drive from our house, but not too bad, especially since she does appointments on Saturdays.
She's in what looks like an older home converted to an office, and she shares space with a yoga studio and something else...not sure what, exactly. We were let in by one of the other women working in one of the offices, and directed to the Midwife's office area. It was a decent sized room with a low futon, desk, and exam table. The exam table was covered with a brown cloth, and above it hung a purple pendant. Behind it, covering the wall, was a cranberry colored gauzy fabric. The floor of her office was exposed cement, and all over were pictures of her 5 (!) kids, as well as things like toys, seashells, and a birth doll and cloth pelvis. My husband kept commenting how how much he liked her office and its 'hippie' vibe. It was pretty cute.
The midwife was SUPER nice and really normal and easy to talk to. We talked a bit about her experience and what led her to midwifery, her rates of episiotomies (almost none) and transfers in labor (2 of 40 births last year), what we envisioned for our care, what her costs include, etc. We got along really well, and my husband liked her a lot, which is nice. She asked some questions about my history and Luca's birth, to make sure I'd be a good candidate, and told me we are 'ideal candidates' for home birth.
All the while, Luca tooled around the office barefoot, playing with the birth doll and the toy blood pressure cuff. Lu was also really interested in the MW's tattoos...one on each wrist, wrapping over the tops of her hands. Every once in awhile, she'd toddle over, grab one of her hands and trace a tattoo, and then pat her leg and walk away. Very sweet.
One extra selling point for her that some may find odd: she is not an overly religious person. Darrick and I are spiritual, but not religious, and in our search for a Midwife, we have noticed SO many of their sites referencing God and His role in birth, or quoting psalms. Don't get me wrong, neither of us has ONE SINGLE PROBLEM with people having strong religious conviction and building their work around it. But, all the same, I'm not into someone being there for my birth who is overly religious and lets it bleed into my care. I just keep picturing us hiring a religious midwife, and her directing me, "Push for Jesus, honey!" and me wanting to push her head under the water in the birthing pool.
So, we talked about this a lot before deciding who to interview, and we feel good about our 3 candidates. While they all MAY BE religious, none of them have it broadcasted all over their websites. I guess Darrick took it for granted that I would KNOW this MW was not religious, because in the middle of the interview, he blurted out, "We are so glad you're not a religious FREAK." Once I recovered from my shock, I realized the MW was laughing and took the comment in stride. I explained we don't care if our MW is religious, we're just not comfortable with her religion infringing on our birth experience. I referenced the websites with psalms and whatnot, and was SO happy to hear her response: "If you're hiring a midwife who tells you if things go wrong she'll be praying for you, you may want to ask what you're paying her for. There's spirituality in birth, and then there's science and knowledge. And science and knowledge HAVE TO win if you want good outcomes."
Ahhhhhh....what a fucking relief to hear her say that...AND to know my dear husband didn't scare her off!!!
So...we really like her! I told her we are interviewing two other women to possibly go with, but we'll get back to her soon. I could TOTALLY see hiring this midwife, but I feel like we owe it to ourselves to at least talk to a few others and see who all if out there. So on we go!