Saturday, August 25, 2007

Practice Philosophy

My practice philosophy has been on my mind lots lately. Not just my general, overall philosophy, because I feel very sure of that. I support women in their informed choices, birth unfolds best left alone, and essentially, I do want to be what is termed a 'hands-off' midwife.

But, I have been thinking more and more about the lovely details. Different situations, how I would react in various circumstances. How much nutritional counseling do I want to offer? Which pregnancy/birth/breastfeeding books do I want to give to all clients? How will I approach clients who have failed to hold up their agreed upon payments? Will I use a doppler prenatally if clients choose it?

I need to start writing all of this down. It is, of course, one of my assignments for school (to create a thorough Principles of Practice), but I would want to do it anyways. Getting computer time for it seems so scare. I have been considering hand writing it all, and then typing it up later.

Another thing I have really been wanting to get started is a website. There is no rush, as I am not taking clients of my own for a little while still, but it is something that gets me all excited! The main thing holding me back is the fact that I must choose a domain name. I have a very hard time with such things. It is right up there with the name of my future practice. I have NO idea. I am hoping that the right name will just 'appear'. Maybe the universe will send it to me in my dreams. I can dream, right?

Baby girl born unassisted

I got word today that the sweet couple for whom we were on call as back-up for their UC had their baby girl early this morning. :) So very sweet. I knew it would go perfectly and they wouldn't need us.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


It feels more and more like so many midwives do not show fair amounts of respect to their apprentices. I hear more and more of apprentices who are made to the grunt work, asked to do all sorts of things (not midwifery related), and aren't paid.

I don't mean to say that it is unreasonable for apprentices to do ALL aspects of midwifery, including the grunt work; of course, she should do her best to help the midwives as much as is reasonable and to experience all the work involved in being a midwife. But it often seems like the apprentice is treated with little regard.

I understand, too, that not all midwives can afford to pay their apprentices, and that the midwives are offering a huge amount of learning to the apprentice. But, there does come a point where the apprentice is quite valuable to the midwife, not just a bystander watching to learn. At this point, it does seem only fair to give the apprentice some sort of pay, even if it is $20 per birth. It isn't so much about the money as it is the act.

I feel extremely blessed to be working with a midwife who respects and values me as much as I respect and value her. She does pay me a very generous amount to assist her at births, more now that I am acting as the primary midwife during prenatal and antenatal care. For this, I am grateful beyond words. Because of my experience, I fully intend to do the same for my future apprentices.

I am just tired of hearing about midwives who are asked (more often, expected!) to organize the midwife's (personal) files, run (personal) errands for her. Midwives and apprentices both have so much value and ought to have mutual respect and admiration.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

nipple shield fun

Our local hospital has a breastfeeding class twice a week, consisting of everyone undressing their babies, weighing their babies, nursing their babies, then weighing the babies again. This is to make sure they 'have enough milk'. The lactation consultants (most of whom are IBCLCs) seem to hand out nipple shields like there is no tomorrow.

These 2 facts make somewhat despise the this 'class'. I have yet to see a mom go there and come away with helpful, sane information. It really just makes me want to pull my hair out in frustration! It makes it even harder when clients go there for help, without ever calling us to tell us they are having problems, even after repeatedly telling them to PLEASE call us if they need anything.

Back to nipple shields. I am sure that there are some rare cases where they can be a true blessing, but they are so hugely overused and, in my opinion, really are a danger to the success of breastfeeding. I have emailed with Dr. Jack Newman regarding nipple shields in the past, and here is some of what he had to say:

"No, a nipple shield is not better than a bottle. With the bottle, the milk supply is maintained and the chances of getting the baby to latch on are good. With the nipple shield the milk supply decreases, and that makes it more difficult to get the baby to latch on. I am appalled by the wide spread use of nipple shields by anyone, but particularly lactation consultants."

Dr. Newman totally rocks.

I just wish them shields weren't handed out like candy everywhere. :(

a decision

I am feeling like I probably won't be telling birth stories here. It feels too personal to me, like they aren't really mine to be telling, and even if I think this is an anonymous blog....on the internet, do we really have anonymity? :) I will probably include snipits about out of the ordinary events that may come up at births from a midwifery perspective, though.

But, it should be full of my musings and whatever it is that I am learning about at the moment.


Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Trust Birth Conference

I'm SO excited about the upcoming Trust Birth Conference.......

Sarah Buckley
, Michel Odent, Gloria Lemay, Rixa Freeze, Pamela Hines-Powell, Gail Hart, and many more!!!


March 7-9, 2008 in Redondo Beach, California.

Come and join us!

While you are at it, take a look at the Trust Birth site itself. ;)

Monday, August 13, 2007


Ok, with only a little over 6 months of a lapse, I am back. :)

I have been feeling the need practice my eloquence these days when it comes to birth, as well as have some spare moments for clarifying for myself what precisely is my philosophy about birth. So, I think that the best way for me to do that is to pick up writing once again and start babbling away. Here we go, one more time.