I have a Doula!

Anna is going to be there to help me negotiate the minefield, and also be a support person for Mark if he needs it. Here’s a link to the Wikipedia page if you’d like more information about what a doula does.

I’ve just spoken to Sandra (sadly blogless, but a regular at SSK) who kindly talked me through the choices of care available, and explained some jargon – like the difference between team care and caseload care in a birthing unit. Sandra was very reassuring, and I now feel a lot less panicked about the whole situation. She validated my choices, and made me feel like I’m not crazy. I wish I had spoken to her much earlier!

I am thinking that Hornsby Hospital is looking good, but since they don’t accept bookings until 14 weeks, I have a while to make up my mind. Anna is coming over to meet us on sunday morning, and once we’ve sorted things out with her, hopefully she can help me make the right choices. And since she is neither a midwife nor an obstetrician, she has nothing invested in the outcomes that I choose.

I even managed to get some washing and some shopping done today. But now I am taking to my bed.


Apparently, as soon as people know you are pregnant, you get offered all sorts of advice. Which I am sure would get annoying in the long term, but right now I am floundering, and need all the help I can get.

I have to choose where this baby will be born, and I have to choose very soon. Most of the checkups and tests are done through the obstetrician or the hospital where you will give birth. And since I am not really convinced of the value of an obstetrician in a low risk pregnancy, I think I am looking for either a midwife or a doula.

I don’t have a midwife, or a doula. Or an obstetrician, or a hospital, or even a GP that will do shared care. All I have is a due date, and a picture of a fuzzy grey blob.

I found a great midwife, but she is fully booked for my due date. She is posting me a list of other midwives that I will call as soon as I get it (hopefully tomorrow).

Unfortunately, I am still very much in the dark as to what would be best for me. I have always been a big believer in taking a pill if I had a headache, but this is a much bigger decision. I am very attracted to having the baby at home, with my husband and a midwife. But I also think that being near medical help is a good idea “just in case”. This rules out my local hospital (Ryde doesn’t have the advanced equipment necessary for all emergencies), so I’ll have to look at a larger hospital.

I think I’m having a low risk pregnancy, but apparently Ryde might reject me anyway, due to my BMI. I have private health care, but still haven’t checked what is covered and what is not.

So if I choose a birthing centre, can I take my own midwife? Or doula? Which is more appropriate/better?

I have seen a friend give birth in a birthing centre, and I’m not afraid, but I am concerned that the discontinuity of care is jarring. We went through three shift changes during her labour, and two of the three midwives had the bedside manner of a barracuda.

My other concerns are that if I don’t have a qualified advocate with me in the hospital, I’ll get pushed into having an episiotomy. I also hate the idea of being forced to lie down to deliver (squatting just seems to make so much more sense).

Sorry to ramble on, just feeling like I am negotiating a minefield.

And here is a picture of Custard. He is the Destroyer of Worlds. And Playstation controllers.



&Week10002 2

That would explain the throwing up. And possibly the irritability and weeping. And the inability to cope with people that eat my beloved companion animals and insist on telling me how great they taste.

Edited to add: Due date is currently 23/11/07. Which is kind of spooky since our best man and woman are due on the 19th.