This post took me a while to write and then to actually hit publish because, well, let's face it I care way too much about what other people think. Way too much. I know that this post may make me look naive or uneducated. Nothing could be further from the truth. There's a few things I believe. First and foremost that having children is a very sacred responsibility. Second, we can't always control the hand we're dealt and it's never our place to judge. Third, and finally, at some point you just have to have faith and trust in God. He knows us, He knows what we are capable of and His will and blessings for us are great if we do all that we can do!
Shortly after finding out about our pregnancy I was able to begin working as a long-term substitute for a nearby middle school. Another amazing miracle. I was hoping that this position would turn into something more permanent. Health insurance was not included with substitute positions and having the hospital birth I wanted was going to be financially impossible without insurance. I didn't know what to do. I was frozen with fear. I couldn't sleep at night because I didn't know how we were going to have this baby. So I waited and waited and waited.
The reality of pregnancy began to kick in as the morning sickness arrived. Working at a middle school and morning sickness is no fun. Stinky teenagers sent me reeling daily. Ginger Ale was my best friend. The parasite in my womb could not be ignored anymore.
I was new to the area and had no insurance. I didn't know a good OB/GYN so I started asking around. I received a few referrals and starting calling different doctors for self-pay pricing. No one wanted me. This was devastating. I felt like a second class citizen as I called doctor after doctor and no one wanted to take me as a patient after they asked the question, "and what insurance do you carry?" To which I would reply that I was self-pay. I would hear, fumbling around and then they would either say were are not taking new patients or be quoted astronomical prices and be discouraged from coming to their practice.
I just kept waiting to find someone to go to. I started to get a little depressed. With my first child I knew who I wanted to see, I went in after being pregnant for six weeks and I was excited. It wasn't like this with this baby. I was scared.
I also need to add, that with Claire, my first, I had a very traditional OB/GYN that I loved. He was funny and had a great bedside manner. I had decent insurance through work and so all options were on the table. We took a birth class, I knew I wanted an epidural immediately and I knew what to expect. I loved and trusted my Doctor and knew he would make the right decisions for me. When Claire came everything went as planned and I was happy with my experience. It was the kind of experience I wanted again. Yet, with no insurance this time around, it was going to cost me $15,000 or more by the time it was all said and done.
I knew this would destroy my family financially, but I still did not know what to do. Having this baby was the blessing we had been asking for for so long, but we really did not believe it would happen. The timing was just, ugh!!!!
My good friend had suggested I visit a midwife in my area that she had met. I thought my friend was CRAZY. A MIDWIFE!!! Me!!!!! No way!!!!! Yet, as my pregnancy progressed I new I needed to make a decision. I shopped around a little more and still was not happy with the way I was being treated and the $$$$$$ we were facing. After calling the local hospital and being transferred from one person to the next I was DONE!!!! I bit the bullet and called the midwife my friend suggested.
As I spoke with the kind caring woman on the other end of the phone my heart and mind started to change and soften. Mary, the office manager, willingly explained cost and procedure and made me feel like a mom trying to have a baby. That probably sounds ridiculous. After I had called so many places who made me feel like a low-life vagrant who got knocked up and had no insurance, talking to Mary is exactly what I needed.
I made an appointment to come and take a look and make a decision, although from the conversation I had with that angel on the phone, a decision had already been made. That decision was affirmed when I met with the amazing Jackie at Bay Area Birth Center. I knew this was the place for me.
Over the next seven months I learned more about birth than I ever dreamed. I learned more about myself too. Reading, The Gift of Giving Life opened my mind and helped me understand that as women we are capable of so much, especially having babies. However, you choose to have one.
Next up. . . the story you've been waiting for. . . or not.
My birth story.
Short, sweet and to the point.