Never, Ever, Ever Give Up

Have you ever been caught between a rock and a hard place where the theoretically best decision may not be the most practical one? Well, I have. And this is the (true) Genesis story of what can happen when you combine trust, faith, and a generous heart with a commitment to never, ever, ever, give up.

In 2005 I graduated from a Nurse-Midwifery program. I was in my 40s and it was the fulfillment of a dream that was a long time coming. I moved down here to Florida and began working for a group of 4 doctors. I was the first midwife they hired into the group and because of my personality and my work ethic, I quickly became a super midwife for them, working easily 60 hours per week, sometimes more, and participating in the birth of nearly 30 babies per month.

Now it is generally understood that there are 2 ways of providing care to pregnant people – the Medical model of care and the Midwifery model. A strict medical model of care focuses on preventing, diagnosing, and treating the complications that can occur during pregnancy, labor, and birth. The provider is the star of the show, and typically the clients’ desires and preferences are not considered. The midwifery model of care is more hands on. It 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. Midwives typically provide continuous, hands-on assistance during the labor and birth process, and post-partum support. Midwives tend to minimize technological intervention and identify and refer women who require obstetrical attention. Some doctors have attitudes, styles, and approaches that fit the midwifery model, and some midwives incorporate the medical model that is more common for doctors.

As I said earlier, I was a super employee in a practice that focused on the medical model, inducing most of the labors and performing cesarean sections more than the national average of 30%. These women who just wanted to get through the birth process with a healthy baby had no idea that agreeing to the plan for inducing when there was no medical indication for it put her and her baby at significant risk for complications. After all, her doctor or midwife was suggesting it, so it must be the best course of action, right? I had to follow the party line because once my shift was over, the next person expected me to have finished the job with the women that had been laboring. And many women came away from their experiences physically whole, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually damaged from a process that should have been transformative in a very positive way. We were not helping women prepare for successful parenting. On the contrary, for many women, we were providing experiences that they would have to recover from for years.

Follow our Genesis story in our next post…

Be grateful for what you have, for your health and your family and most importantly, never, ever, ever, give up!

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  • Jilda Cunningham

    I was so fortunate to find you, Fadwah. Your beliefs and how you practice are empowering and encouraging.

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