I am a certified nurse midwife. I practice my art and craft in women's homes. At this moment I await calls from three women, who are nearing their due dates. I go on the premise that "birth is something women do," as compared to the commonly held view that babies "are delivered" by the practitioner. The active partner in the midwife/laboring woman relationship is the woman. I am there, with her and her chosen family, ready with my education, experience, skills, supplies, intuition, and hands.
I have a fundamental trust that birth works. The 'fear' that so many have regarding childbirth and its safety translates, when seen as a normal act, as 'awe.' Any act that is awe-inspiring---a tropical sunset, a deep melding between beloveds during lovemaking, a quiet sea that rises into a tsunami--- requires attention and profound respect and, as a midwife, I approach labor and birth with respect. I believe that in the sacred way babies are created, in an act of privacy, intimacy and love, childbirth equally belongs in a private, intimate and loving environment. For a healthy, well-nourished and well-supported woman, with the assistance of an experienced practitioner, childbirth can safely occur in her home.
A mentor of mine once said "birth has the same guarantees that life does." I talk with enquiring families and my own clients about homebirth with this proverbial statement in mind. There is a false sense of security that many hold in the 'safety' of giving birth within hospitals, with doctors and the generous use of technology. Often what ensues is the woman becomes passive with anesthesia, amputated from all feeling of her body's sensations, tethered to her bed by monitors and IVs, and her labor ending with an unneccessary cesarean, new risks created by having major abdominal surgery.
Homebirth is not for everyone but it should become part of everyone's vocabulary. I welcome your inquiries.