Today was a sad day. I helped two families deal with their separate experiences of loss. I was a witness to tears and pain and connection. Normally I don't have a problem doing what I do. I am able to see the hope instead of the tragedy. But today, I didn't have any defense against the sadness.
But that's not what this post is about. I've been doing too much bitching lately. This post is about yesterday's midwife appointment and how I found myself guilty of jumping to conclusions.
You see, since day one at our Birthing Center there has been a midwife that I've been dreading meeting with. Her photo on the website features her in some type of Yoga-like pose that makes her look like a zen-momma-midwife. Stories of her around the clinic are that she tends to be the most "strong-minded" and alternative in her beliefs (regarding things like circumcision, herbal remedies and vaccines). And the one experience I had with her over the phone when I was having some spotting left me with a bad taste in my mouth. As luck would have it, we've somehow missed meeting with her in our rotation of midwives. Until now.
I went into it with an inwardly sarcastic smile, knowing I wouldn't like her. Ooops. Just goes to show
anyone I can be a judgmental bitch before I actually get to know someone. Because, really, I liked her. She's been doing this the longest and it shows. She was no-nonsense, calm, and knowledgeable. Here are some of the things I liked about her:
-When she raved (twice) about my blood work.
-When she told me I "look comfortable being pregnant."
-When she provided helpful suggestions and backed them up with research.
-When she told me my baby was extremely healthy, weighing in around 6 lbs, and could probably "come today" and still be healthy.
-When she didn't judge me (the first midwife so far!) for what I've been eating and said, "Sounds like that works for you."
-When I told her my biggest fear about giving birth is that the baby might be born not breathing, and she looked at me and said, "Mine too."
-When she told my husband I had a beautiful belly.
-When she recommended adding a glass of wine to my bathtime ritual as a "muscle relaxant" to keep my uterus calm. (Still not likely to happen - I'm too paranoid).
-When she told me my baby is in the "best possible" position for delivery (LOA).
-Most importantly....when she found baby's heartbeat right away and it sounded like heaven.
So yeah. Oops. I stand corrected against this poor midwife whom to date I haven't been able to talk about without rolling my eyes. Sorry, zen-momma-midwife-lady!
The craziest thing about yesterday's appointment (besides me being wrong), is that it impressed upon me the nearness of this impending ENORMOUS life change. I mean, the whole appointment felt different. We discussed prelabor signs, how and when to call, what to bring to the birth center, and post-partum care. She stressed to me that the baby could come any time now, especially as I myself was born at 36 weeks. She encouraged me to hurry up and stop working so I can enjoy my last time without kids. Basically, it just felt real. Since then, I've vacillated between terror, exhilaration, disbelief and shock. Now when I play my Calendar Game, I look at the month of October and see a bunch of days that could be baby's birthday. I mean, I realize I could still have almost 6 weeks to go, but I think that it sunk in that every day from now on is a possibility.
But, as I said before, I want to keep ticking off those "possible days" until we get much closer to the due date. I'm really not ready to give up my transition/preparing/self-care days before baby gets here. I feel like it's important for me to take this next step. Not to mention, I am going to need a week after I finish working to recover my strength in order to push this baby out!
I will leave you with a glimpse of the "beautiful belly."