Most people have a question or two not covered here. Feel free to call, text, or email any questions, comments, or concerns so we can help you sort it out.
South Philadelphia Community Acupuncture
Total Wellness Acupuncture Inc. Rebecca A Allen, North East, MD 443-553-3465
Metta Integrative Wellness Center, Lauren E. Potts, 720 W. 36th Street, Baltimore, MD
Charlyn Santiago, Ellicott City, Annapolis, MD, 410-456-4852
Danielle Bellezza, 225 St John St, Havre de Grace, MD 21078, 484-680-4222
Wanderlust Birth & Photography, Samantha Magpi, South Jersey & Philly, 856-426-7184
Birth In Full Bloom, Rachel Vorhauer & Katie Brown
Tammy Bradshaw Photography
SilverPixels.com, Jacki Taylor, Maryland, Delaware & Pennsylvania
DO I HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL I’M PREGNANT TO START CARE?
We often meet with people before they are pregnant, so they can prepare for conception by making healthy changes in diet & lifestyle, and begin the midwifery relationship. As a small practice, taking 4-6 births per month, we encourage women to contact us as soon as they become pregnant to reserve a space.
I am due in a few weeks. Is it too late for me to start care with Woman Wise?
Often, later in pregnancy, women decide that the route of care they had initially chosen is not going to lead to a natural, woman & family centered birth. We assess each woman individually. Assuming that yours is a low-risk pregnancy, and that there is adequate time for preparation, we will certainly consider accepting you as a client.
WHAT IF THERE'S A COMPLICATION IN MY PREGNANCY OR BIRTH?
Obviously, an important question and one with a long, thorough answer. But here it is in brief. The general consensus is that midwives are experts in normal, uncomplicated pregnancy and birth. In order to be a good candidate for a homebirth, you must have an uncomplicated pregnancy and be in good overall health. We believe that prenatal care is what you give yourself; we are with you throughout your pregnancy to provide support and guidance. If complications do arise, an individualized transfer of care plan will be in place for you. If, for health reasons, we need to transfer you out of our care during your pregnancy or birth, we will be available to provide support through the remainder of your pregnancy, birth, and postpartum.
A homebirth is not our goal; our primary goal is a healthy mother and healthy baby. Thankfully, most planned homebirths, do happen at home! We come to births well-equipped to handle the rare unforeseen emergency, we carry emergency equipment, and we are trained and certified in Neonatal Resuscitation and CPR.
WHAT IS INFORMED CHOICE?
As a family choosing homebirth and midwifery care, you will need to make a number of choices and decisions during your pregnancy, labor and birth, as well as for your baby. We want to equip you with the information you need to make informed choices. We believe that making informed choices involves weighing the benefits and risks of any decision or course of action while taking into account your intuition, personal experience, individual circumstances, advice and opinions of trusted sources, and evidence-based practice.
WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT WATERBIRTH?
We love waterbirth! Warm water in labor can make an amazing difference for many women, and there is some evidence that water can make a smoother transition for baby. We offer waterbirth tub rentals for an additional cost. Our birth tubs come equipped with a disposable liner, compressor and pump for draining the water.
HOW DO I KNOW IF MY HOME IS SUITABLE FOR A HOMEBIRTH?
Down the street in your neighborhood at any given time a birth could be unfolding. Sometimes when we slip out of a home in the early morning hours, leaving a new baby behind we are reminded of what birth could be here in America. Most homes are suitable for homebirth, even small apartments. Your neighbors will likely not know you've had a baby until you tell them. If you have any specific concerns please feel free to ask us, we also do a home visit at 36 weeks to become familiar with your space and make recommendations for birth.
ISN’T BIRTH MESSY?
The mess is a universal question, but the truth is that there is rarely a big mess. Families are often surprised (and relieved) to find that the midwives have left their homes as tidy as they were before the birth, and sometimes even tidier!
I WANT MY CHILDREN TO BE AT THE BIRTH. HOW INVOLVED CAN OUR FAMILY BE?
The short answer is that your family can be as involved as feels right to you! We enjoy having children present for prenatal visits and births. We think it's important for the whole family to have an opportunity to be a part of welcoming the newborn. We recommend that you have someone just for your child(ren) who can be completely present and responsive to their needs and questions. Of course, it should be someone you are all comfortable with. There are wonderful books and materials for preparing children for the sights and sounds of labor and birth, and we have many of these for you to borrow. Children are not yet socialized to fear birth, and whether they sleep through the night and wake to find a new sibling, or actively take part in welcoming the new baby, homebirth takes place within the natural rhythm of the family.
WILL STUDENTS BE INVOLVED IN MY CARE AND AT MY BIRTH?
Yes, Karen is committed to the importance of growing more midwives; to that end, she has always worked with students & apprentices and firmly believes in the concept of “each one, teach one.” Students will be a fluid part of your care and you will absolutely meet anyone who would be at your birth well ahead of time. If ever you find you are uncomfortable with any of the students involved in your care you are encouraged to talk openly and privately with Karen.
WHAT TESTS ARE REQUIRED IF I HAVE MY CARE WITH WOMANWISE?
Homebirth midwifery care is a shared responsibility between you and your midwife. Though we are able to provide you and your baby screenings and tests that are standard of care we do not require them. We work closely with you so that if a situation arises where further testing would be useful we can advise you.
CAN I STILL GET ULTRASOUNDS?
Yes, though they are by no means required unless we all have a concern.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I’M A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR A HOMEBIRTH?
Pregnancy is not a disease state and birth is not a medical event. Most normal, healthy pregnant women are good candidates for homebirth.