So how does one choose a home birth midwife exactly? In some states, they aren't even legal. In Massachusetts, there are various, well, levels of legality related to home birth. Regardless, I was focused on finding someone who was understanding, experienced and, to use an old midwifery adage, knew when to use her hands and when to sit on them. In the last couple of years, in doing research for my book and in doing readings after it was published, I had met lots of midwives. And I think I can honestly say that I have not met one that I did not like. Still, finding the right midwife was alot like finding the right spouse. There had to be chemistry. I spoke and met with several, asking them all the same questions about their qualifications and experience. We invested many hours in this process and it dawned on me that, years before, when I had signed up with an obstetrician, I did so simply because her name was listed among providers in my insurance booklet, and she could squeeze me in for a pap smear this side of six months. What had I been thinking? Or, more precisely, not thinking? I guess I was just so busy, and perhaps so totally realistic, that having a 'relationship' with my OB (gotta love those five minute appointments) was a non-issue. Of course, she was not on call the night my first son was born and he was surgically delivered by someone whose name I do not know and have never heard of again.
Anyway, in our search for a midwife a couple months passed and we still had not settled on one. I wondered if I was being irresponsible letting time pass without having regular prenatal visits with SOMEONE. But I did not want to get sucked into a medical practice, with all of its tests, only to leave.
Meanwhile, family and friends were nudging me about getting an early ultrasound/blood test at 12 weeks given that I am 38 and considered at higher risk for fetal abnormalities. I really did not want an ultrasound, and didn't think I needed one, despite that I was quite intent to have one with my first son. I am not sure why I had a change of heart about the procedure between pregnancies. Perhaps it was seeing my sister-in-law, among others in my family, go through hell when ultrasounds raised false alarms and caused months of unnecessary stress (oh the hysterics)! I did not want or need any negativity. I knew my baby was fine and if it wasn't, it wasn't. That was OK, too. But my husband was particularly uneasy, so I relented.
It was a decision that really cemented how this birth would unfold.