- Babies come on their own if left alone.
- Too much fear is propagated when a mother is "overdue".
- Breaking water is a risky intervention.
- Cutting the cord too soon causes problems for baby by forcing them to breathe on their own immediately rather than transitioning more slowly.
- Having cut the cord too soon, babies often need oxygen because they turn blue because they weren't ready to breathe on their own. Pure oxygen, however, basically fries their brand-new lungs, often causing respiratory issues that affect them for years to come.
- Babies transition best when right next to mom, the one-and-only they've ever known.
- I don't need a doctor to tell me how to have a healthy pregnancy.
I was wrong.
And now, I must eat some crow.
If I heard it once, I bet I heard it fifteen times when having Elizabeth: "It's hospital policy."
Even though I had a midwife, hospital policy seemed to over-ride everything.
Even though I had a midwife, there was intense pressure to deliver once I reached 40 weeks.
Even though I had a midwife, I had a drug-free induction by sweeping the membranes.
Even though I had a midwife, an amniotomy was done to help Elizabeth come sooner.
Even though I had a midwife, she did a few routine things that are typically associated with an obstetrician, like cutting the cord immediately. To be fair, that maybe had something to do with the hostile nurses that were there. I don't know. Also, applying traction on the cord while waiting for the placenta to be delivered is something that surprised (shocked?) both me and my doula Megan.
Even though I delivered with a midwife, my baby was kept away from me and given oxygen to help her breathe after her cord was, in my opinion, cut too soon.
When this all became clear to me, I likened it to my feelings about home education. One might think that because I don't use the public school for our children's educations, that I don't like teachers. Far be it! There are many caring, committed, concerned and even Christian men and women who are public school teachers. I don't have anything "against" them--it's the system I have a problem with.
As far as the midwife vs. obstetrician goes, I know that there are many ob's who would gladly listen to the wishes of the parents and would be happy to help babies be born with no "routine" intervention.
However, because of hospital policy, aka "the system", they know they must be more concerned with CYA* medical practices.
*CYA=Cover Your uhhhh, rear end
It becomes so much more about the liability and litigation.
And so, I apologize.
I'm sorry if I made it sound like midwives are the best and obstetricians are the worst.
Even though there are many ob's who believe pregnancy, labor and birth are just catastrophes waiting to happen, I believe that there are many ob's who are even less-interventionist than some midwives (referred to with tongue-in-cheek as "med-wives").
In the end, what it really comes down to is finding a care provider that you trust.
And I have--I've trusted the doctors that I've gone to with my first 8 pregnancies.
I trusted my midwife.
It leaves women with very few options.
That is so disappointing to me because if you're only choice is to deliver in a hospital, hospital policy will determine much of what happens unless you have done some extensive homework and are prepared to "sign-off" on what you don't want done to you or your child.
Many things are presented as "law" or "required" that just plain aren't--are not law and are not required. Strongly recommended, perhaps, but not required.
Regarding Elizabeth's birth specifically, it's not so much about me not getting what I wanted, but about getting so much of what I didn't want.
All of that wasn't because I had a midwife and not an ob--it was very much about where the baby was born. Hospital policy...
I don't know if this makes any sense to any of you, but I just needed to get that off my chest.
edited to add:
Ironically, I came across this post tonight.