I just realized I posted about being 8 weeks pregnant....and last time, 8 weeks was when I had my first appoitment with my OB's office. This is just one of the many differences between an OB's office midwife and a private midwife. When I interviewed homebirth midwives a few weeks back, they all said, "We CAN see you whenever, but before 12 weeks, all we'll do is tell you to get your rest and take your vitamins." And, truth be told, I am kind of appreciating this laid-back approach to prenatal care. I think if this was my first pregnancy I'd be more worried about things and more anxious to start appointments. I remember with Luca, I knew at 4 weeks, and waiting until 8 weeks to see the midwife was a form of torture like none other. Mind you, at the first appointment, nothing at ALL exciting happened. But it still made it real and official....and that was something I was SO eager to have happen.
This time, though....I think my whole approach is more calm and relaxed. I am pretty sure things are ok, and if they aren't, a Dr's visit won't change that right now. I have to leave things up to faith and chance, and I'm able to do that and to just believe it'll work out for the best.
So when I do start seeing my midwife at 12 weeks, I'll have some bloodwork done, and I'll also get a referral for the nuchal translucency test and AFP bloodwork. A lot of homebirth families opt out of this testing, which is done in the first trimester (11-12 weeks is ideal timing) to test for markers via ultrasound and blood test of what could be Down Syndrom or Trisomy. To us, this is important and something we really believe in having done. We do have to pay for it ourselves, but we're willing.
The catch to this is that we also have to choose whether or not to pay for what many women refer to as the 'BIG' ultrasound...the one typically done between 18 and 22 weeks. This ultrasound can generally tell you the sex of your baby, although this time around I don't think we're going to opt to know that. It also (and more importantly) includes measurements and screenings to make sure vital organs are functioning and developed properly, there are no signs of a cleft palate, and development is on track. Some argue it's not a necessary procedure, unless there are other signs the baby may not be growing properly. It's another procedure we'll be paying for out of pocket should we opt to have it done.
The other 'basic' tests and procedures done in pregnancy are included in the cost of hiring our midwife. So...now...I just need to stop procrastinating and HIRE her.