It’s like (not) recycling

Just so you are forewarned, in this post I process my thoughts about a decision that I’m thankful I’m facing but still perplexed about. And it is this: midwives, or doctor?

Today I met with the doctor I’ve been assigned to. Heard the hearbeat (good), peed in a cup (standard), blood pressure check – high. Not so good. I think it’s partly end-of-semester stress (when I woke up this morning my neck and shoulders were so tight they hurt, like I’d been lifting weights, which I hadn’t) and partly just the unknowns of meeting a new doctor. I liked him. Straightforward, kind, and efficient. I asked all my questions (mostly about vitamins and exercise) and he asked me whether I’ve decided to continue on with him or would I like to see the midwives?

At first I felt at a total loss even to know how to think about this question. Everybody says that the main difference between the two is that midwives have more time to spend with you. Frankly, that’s not my #1 criterion. In terms of pain management at delivery, he said that the only thing he can do that they can’t is a C-section. I know a lot of people feel really strongly about C-sections, but I can’t find it in my heart to care either way very much. I don’t have strong feelings about epidural vs. “natural” birth either. I’m kind of interested in having the option to get totally drugged out if it helps.

But the thing is… I feel like I should. Care. More. I realized that the question has a social dimension to it I hadn’t really foreseen. Choosing the doctor over the midwives feels like… not recycling. What will my friends say? What will my sister think? Who will judge me when they see the glass bottles in the garbage can instead of the recycling bin? It feels like precisely that kind of a moral and ethical decision to me, but the truth is – I don’t really want to see the midwives.

I’m not sure if it’s because of my negative experiences with the practice in VA, or because of anxiety about something going wrong. I’m just… not… interested. And I feel kind of guilty about that.

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2 Responses to “It’s like (not) recycling”

  1. Samantha Says:

    I think you should follow your own feelings on this one, and if you’d prefer to be with the doctor, do that, because it’s best for you. Don’t worry about others’ thoughts on this. They’re not the ones to give birth, after all!

    Maybe this would change if I ever did get pregnant, but when I’ve about the whole birthing process, I kind of feel like you, and don’t have any preferences. I kind of see it as something to get through, one way or another, and I don’t care that much which way.

  2. tara Says:

    it all depends on the midwives and the doctors.

    i ended up with the dr that i could totally just be best-buddies with… she knits, she lived in NH while we were up there, she loved OCHEM!!! right after i delivered she brought in another nurse with her knitting!

    she spent the entire pushing part of my labor sitting on the end of bed making suggestions about ways to grip the different handbars and coaching me through the delivery. i couldn’t have had a better experience.
    but, yea, it definitely seems like i betrayed WOMEN down here by not LEAVING the midwives…. even after the some 6 months of bad experiences there.
    so if you like the doctor and the rest of the people in the office, then i would just go with him.

    even the dr that i wasn’t sure about in the practice was the perfect person for sending me home. he sat next to me and was encouraging and supportive— exactly the sort of calm peptalk that i needed to feel like i was ready to leave the hospital.

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