“Rachel provided me with peace, love, awareness, and the right education to support my preparation for a home birth. What I am most grateful for is the confidence I was able to build with her by my side, both before, during, and after my birth experience. Rachel provided us with the space that was needed to open up to this powerful experience and I could not have asked for more.”
What is a midwife?
The Midwives Model of Care™
The Midwives Model of Care is based on the fact that pregnancy and birth are normal life processes.
The Midwives Model of Care includes:
• monitoring the physical, psychological and social well-being of the mother throughout the childbearing cycle;
• providing the mother with individualized education, counseling, and prenatal care, continuous hands-on assistance during labor and delivery, and postpartum support;
• minimizing technological interventions; and
• identifying and referring women who require obstetrical attention.
The application of this woman-centered model of care has been proven to reduce the incidence of birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section.
© 1996-2007 Midwifery Task Force, All Rights Reserved
What does midwifery care look like?
Midwifery care is very different from typical medical care! As a midwife, I am not here to tell you what to do or how your birth should go. My goal is to walk alongside you as you make the best decisions for you and your baby, providing you with education and support along the way.
Our relationship thrives on connection, trust, and respect. Unlike a typical medical practice, you have direct access to me throughout your pregnancy for anything you may need. I accept a limited number of clients each month, so I can take the time needed to truly get to know your desires and goals for your birth. Clients rarely encounter a wait time for appointments and can be seen both at home and in office.
I aim to blend traditional and modern practices, always working to provide the most evidence-based care possible. I strongly believe birth is a powerful, natural process with many variations of normal. In cases where your pregnancy, birth, or postpartum deviate from normal, my goal is to gently guide it back to normal when possible, treat when necessary, and refer for additional care when indicated.
By utilizing a midwife, you lower your risk of induction and augmentation of labor, use of pain medications, and cesarean birth. Preterm birth and infant mortality are also decreased. You are less likely to have a severe tear, and are more likely to have a positive breastfeeding relationship with your baby. Midwifery clients also report more satisfaction with their care!
Who is a candidate for midwifery care?
Prenatal visits are comprehensive. Because I believe in a holistic model of care, I do much more than simply monitor the physical changes in your pregnancy. At each visit, we spend time talking about topics such as nutrition, fetal positioning, breastfeeding, preparation for labor and birth, prenatal testing, and much more. My goal is to help you learn about your care so that you can make your own informed decisions. I encourage you to ask whatever questions you may have, and am happy to take extra time to make sure everything is answered. We usually meet once a month from the time you enter care until you start your third trimester. At that point, I typically see you every other week, and then weekly from 36 weeks until birth. At each visit, I will take your blood pressure, pulse, and weight, measure your belly, and listen to your baby’s heartbeat. I also do a urine dipstick at each visit, and feel for your baby’s position once he or she is big enough. Most lab tests are performed at our visits, though ultrasounds and occasionally bloodwork may be done at a nearby facility.
Prenatal care is also available to those who are planning a hospital birth. Please contact me to discuss your needs!
Labor and Birth Care
As a midwife, I attend both home and birth center births, including water birth.
I believe that labor is a natural and normal process, so I will not intervene unless problems arise. Two midwives attend every birth, so that both you and your baby always have the support you need. I bring all of the same emergency supplies that we have at a birth center to home births, including resuscitation equipment, oxygen, antihemorrhagic medications, IV fluids, and more — though we rarely need them.
I will stay in touch with you throughout early labor, making sure you are doing well and getting adequate rest. When it is time for me to join you at home or for you to come to the birth center, I will quietly set up my equipment and ensure that both you and your baby are thriving. As labor progresses, I will continue to monitor you and your baby, and help you and your support team with comfort measures. You can eat and drink what you want, labor and push in whatever positions feel best, and even help catch your own baby!
All of my clients are able to rent a birthing tub from me free of charge. I am happy to attend births both in and out of the water, and regularly have clients choosing both options.
Postpartum and Newborn Care
Postpartum visits are generally scheduled two to three times in the first weeks. At these visits, I will fully evaluate you to make sure your recovery is going well and that you are smoothly transitioning into life with a newborn. I will also assess your baby to confirm he or she is thriving and continuing to grow. If you are experiencing any breastfeeding difficulties, we will troubleshoot them at these visits or refer to a lactation consultant as needed. At your six week visit, we will talk about life going forward, and will discuss your preferred method of family planning or fertility awareness. If you are due for a well-woman checkup or Pap test, I can also perform those at this visit. This is typically our last visit, but I love it when families stay in touch!
Although midwives are traditionally associated with pregnancy and birth, we also perform wellness exams for all ages! I am happy to provide you with any well-woman services you need with the midwifery care you deserve. This can include your annual exam, labwork, Pap test, discussion of diet and supplements, and much more. I am glad to discuss family planning with you as well, and can refer you to a local practitioner to obtain a prescription for birth control pills or other forms of contraception if desired.