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Why I decided to hire a private midwife for my first birth

Updated: 6 days ago

(A story I used to feel weird about, that I'm now ok with)

woman holding a newborn after a water birth home birth

This is something that comes up quite a lot in my work, and to be totally honest I used to feel a bit ick talking about it. So first I want to recognise that there is definitely a privilege that comes with this even being a legitimate option, so let’s just put that out there on the table first.

 But what I have come to realise it that people don’t bat an eyelid at spending much more on weddings, holidays and fancy baby gear/new nursery bits and bobs.  As a society we just don’t place as much importance on birth and on looking after the Mother, in particular. When I was pregnant with my first, I was absolutely set on a home birth.

For me (as for many) the hospital had connotations of illness and death and I just knew I would be more comfortable and relaxed at home. I felt strong and confident in my decision, despite a few unhelpful words from family members.

The only problem was NUH’s lack of a reliable home birth service. Back then it was running (unlike right now, but that’s another story) but it was patchy, and I had been told to prepare for the chance a midwife would not be available to come out to me. Being a planner, I knew I was more comfortable with more certainty than that…. I was obviously so prepared to go in if I needed to for a legitimate medical concern, but the idea of having to change all my plans due to short staffing was not what I wanted. I REALLY wanted this home birth. Like really, really.


So we looked into our options and worked out how we could make it happen. We looked into doula support as well as private midwifery (very different roles of course, let's chat about that another time) and I decided although I loved the idea of a doula, and went on to hire one for my second birth and become one myself, for this birth I wanted a midwife, and I wanted to be at home. Now the REAL dream would be to have both wouldn’t it?! Continuity of care from a trusted midwives AND doula. Now wouldn’t that be beautiful. So, we settled on a midwife and found someone local who I really loved, she was very experienced, calm and trusting of physiological birth, but I knew she could also be firm with me if she needed to (which I felt like I might need/want at the time.) We figured out how to budget for it, spent very little on baby gear, got bits second hand and managed to make it work. Throughout the whole process I had to KEEP reminding myself that this kind of birth support is life changing and is well worth investing in.


And guess what…it WAS life changing. Without that incredible, transformative, POWERFUL home birth….Twelve Moons would not be here. That birth was everything. It made me realise the strength of women, my own strength and determination AS well as my total and utter obsession with birth. I knew that the preparation I did, the support I gathered and the choices I made, ALL had a huge impact on what was an epic first birth. And having that support from my midwife, in my own home, postpartum was invaluable. On the day of her last visit, I cried and cried to see her go.


So, if you are wondering if investing in a doula or private midwife is worth it….ask yourself are you worth it? Is your baby worth it? And I guarantee you, the answer is yes. Your birth will shape you (and your whole family) for years to come. It is not just a day (or three.)


If you are looking for an independent midwife local to Nottingham or Derby, I highly recommend the fabulous Mollie May, AND if you are looking for Doula support through from pregnancy to birth and postpartum…. I recommend myself! You can read more about my doula services and packages, and please do come and book in for a free discovery call to see if we might be a good fit. I cover anywhere within an hour of Beeston, so anywhere in Nottingham, Derby and parts of Leicestershire, basically anywhere in the East Midlands.

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