history: my son was delivered in at my home on October 16, 1999 with a lay midwife. I set my sites on becoming a midwife right then and there, my son was bf, not vaxxed, no vit-k, not circumcised, and raised vegetarian. I did not tear.
I started nursing school when Hunter was a year old with the hopes that " well it's hard to get into lay midwifery and build clientelle. maybe I should try L/D and get paid well as a nurse and build experience............... then get out of nursing, build clientelle, and become a lay midwife.
When I did my clinicals in L/D, i cried everyday. Epidurals, catheters,fetal monitors, etc...... This is NOT how I envision birth. It made me sad. ( birth is a natural part of a womans life)
I started nursing school to BE A MIDWIFE!!!!!! now as a new grad i have decided to work in the ED and part time in a psych unit. because working L/D would be awful to me. ( i.e nobody checked my lochia, nobody palpated my fundus)
nursing school has definitely changed me, yet, i've studied all the L/D stuff, and if i ever have another child, I will have the baby at home. I am just mad/frusterated at myself that I thought that nursing would make me a good lay midwife.......and it really won't.
Bottom line, i went to nursing school to learn about birth/intrapartum etc. and the conventional aspect of it really does not appeal to me.
Here I go, as a new grad starting in the ED, when all I really wanna do is be a homebirthing midwife................
I feel weird and frustrated at this point. Yes, i will have a good job that I can support my son and I on. Yes I have a degree, but NO, i want to be a homebirthing midwife. yet nursing school failed me regarding labor and delivery. They taught breast is best woo hoo, but think that vegan moms need more nutrition.
I'm lost. I'm starting a job as an ER nurse, but I really wanna assist moms to deliver in their own homes.
any help, advice encouraging words would be a plus. i still have that "dream" of assisting moms at home, but i really honestly don't know if it will happen..........
Jul 18, '03
Hi, Tiny Nurse.
I do not know about any specific facilities in Ohio, but, here in New York there are many Birthing Centers that are staffed by nurses AND lay midwives. The Elizabeth Seaton Center, for one, has a wonderful, natural, healthy, vibe. This is their website:
I am sorry to hear that you've had such a bad experience in L/D, but I want to send you encouragement. Do some research in your area, ask your midwife for reccommendations, do a google search on "Ohio and Birth Centers" - I bet that you can find a work environment that is more satisfying - and one that will help you to transition into a home birth role.
Jul 18, '03
Hello. I understand your frustration. Maybe you could think of your time in L&D as "boot camp" . . preparing you for the worst. Now you are well-trained in the exceptions. Change the way you look at it and you can begin to see it as an asset for when things do go wrong in L&D. I like the previous poster's comment. Try to find a birthing center more to your taste and work as a nurse there. The focus would be much different.
The truth is there are women who don't mind all the interventions. By my fourth child, I was more than ready for an epidural.
Jul 18, '03
You have to understand that not every delivery is easy, and not every mom can handle the pain of labor and childbirth. Yes, birth is a natural thing, but every birth is different. Babies can die if interventions are not available, and so can Mom. As far as the vegan thing...many people toy with the idea, and don't fully understand the body's requirements in order to be healthy. Eating healthy is great, but if someone smokes and drinks, what's the point? Some "vegetarians" do not take in enough protein or vitamins in order to support themselves nutritionally, let alone a breastfed baby. If you have all the info and eat right, great for you. I guess I don't understand why you cried because fetal monitors and catheters were used? And you chose not to vaccinate? I guess I don't understand why you would do that?
Jul 18, '03
MishlB - all good points.
I guess this old jaded mom appreciatiated the fetal monitor and epidural. I've seen so many births go wrong - not the majority of course, but enough to want the interventions nearby if something goes wrong.
There are women who opt for the opposite. Hence TinyNurse's concerns.
I will say that I don't understand not immunizing though.
I still say, look at the L&D experience as a learning experience that prepares you for the worst and find a niche you can practice your profession the way you want to.
Jul 18, '03
I think delivering at home would be great...probably more comfortable than the hospital, but the reality is that the hospital is probably safer...in case of emergencies.
Jul 18, '03
MishlB - I'm not sure I'd be "comfortable" anywhere I was when I was experiencing labor pains. :-)
I have to say that I think I did really well with the pain of my first three natural deliveries. Used my breathing well. But the truth is, I did not like the feeling of being unable to control my body and the feeling of knowing that no matter what I did, another contraction was coming. And contractions hurt. I'm not gonna mince words.
So, being at home in my bed, all I'd be thinking about was the mess. In MY bed. Blood, amniotic fluid, urine, BM, etc. It would be a distraction to me.
I like our L&D suite. Decorated like a bedroom but with all the "interventions" nearby. I have a friend who has had all her babies at home without a problem though. So, to each their own.
Jul 18, '03
I completely understand what you are talking about Tiny. I also thought of birth as a complety natural process and was very much against "interventions". Then I spent more time there. It only took one prolapsed cord to make me see that fetal monitoring and a hospital environment aren't all that evil. I resolved my dissapointment by getting the fact that women are different and want different things at their births. There are some women who think not getting an epidural, not immunizing or not circumcising are absolutely barbaric. Other women choose natural birth and no meds or procedures for the baby. In the end I learned to enjoy L&D when I learned to let go of MY wants and learned to focus on my patients'.
Personally I am somewhere in the middle when it comes to natural birthing. I, like every nurse here, think I know what is best for my patients
. But, I have to accept that they sometimes choose differently and in the end my primary responsibility is to be their advocate. I would encourage you to seek experience in a birthing center, or even in a hospital. I would not allow a lay midwife without any experience in complicated pregnancies to deliver me at home. Having some exposure to the unhealthy elements of pregnancy (cause when things go bad, they go BAAAAAAAAAD) would benefit you as a laymidwife or a CNM.
Last edit by fergus51 on Jul 18, '03
Jul 18, '03
I would not allow a lay midwife without any experience in complicated pregnancies to deliver me at home. Having some exposure to the unhealthy elements of pregnancy (cause when things go bad, they go BAAAAAAAAAD) would benefit you as a laymidwife or a CNM.
I completely agree with the above, as everyone else has stated, not all deliveries are as wonderful as yours was, things do happen, I have been there when a cord prolapses and with dr, anes and pedi all in house we still have an inital apgar of 2 I have seen full term babies born with unknown problems before birth not be able breath and need to be tubed to save its life. Horrible shoulder dystochias .... I could go on and on...most deliveries are fine and need little to no intervention, but why when you are so concerned about the affects of vacinations and meat on your child would you put him at risk by being born at home. Why not deliver where if something did go wrong you would have help available.
Jul 18, '03
Some studies have found that homebirths for CERTAIN TYPES OF WOMEN are as safe as hospital births overall. I personally am weary of home births, but any woman who informs herself of all the risks should be able to deliver wherever she wants to. I can understand why some women would choose to deliver at home when the hospital experience can be incredibly degrading. I think hospitals have a LOT of work to do to make themselves more welcoming to expectant mothers.
Jul 19, '03
I think that a student nurse experience in L&D doesn't give you much information at all on the real nursuing world. There's not enough time, and you don't have enough experience to appreciate all the nuances of the care.
Regarding natural vrs interventional birth I would recommend you educate yourself enough to be able to make a strong argument for both sides of the debate. In some cases lots of interventions are appropriate and necessary, in others the best choice for mom and baby is to stay home- and there are thousnds of others in between. Ultimately women need to pick the spot where they are most relaxed and able to allow their bodies to work.
Jul 25, '03
I will be taking my first semester of nursing courses in the fall. I want to be a midwife since I had my son. I have read all the books I could find on being a midwife. Now I chose to be an RN in order to be a certified nurse midwife because I believe that in case of an emergency there should be adequate staff and supplies nearby. I also recognize that birthing is a natural process. That natural process can happen any where in my opinion. You might choose to have the baby at home or in a hospital but guess what? You can end up giving birth in the local supermarket. Think about history... Back in the days men out numbered women because we were dying while giving birth. Science has made advancements and I think the best way is to combine the two. That's why I want to be a certified nurse midwife.
Aug 11, '03
Congratulations on your home birth.
I ran a free standing birth center for almost 10 years and there are many women who want non-intervention for their births. Birth Centers are an alternative to high tech hospital births. Hospitals are great when there is a need for acute care but research has shown over and over that out of hospital birth at home or in free standing birth centers is as safe (maybe Even safer) as hospital birth for women with out risk factors.
i so enjoyed the births at our birth center where women labored a they chose with the support they wanted and needed. Birth is very beautiful.
Do not give up on your dream. Become a midwife. I teach at the Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing and we offer distance education. www.midwives.org
We also have a very strong focus on out of hospital births! There is an organization National Association of Childbearing Centers that can give you lots of info on birth centers in the USA and around the world. WWW.birthcenters.org
I am so happy to hear about your belief in natural birth. I do understand being dissalusioned by contemporty hospital care of women. I firmlybelieve to change this we need more out of hospital birth as is being pushed in England!
All the best.
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