Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Reflecting on the road with Lynnette

Today as I was leaving the Y after doing my 30 minutes on the bike I saw a former patient working out on the elliptical machine, "trying to lose her last few pounds of pregnancy weight" :) . Her baby is already 3 months old and she's, of course, madly in love with him. We talked briefly, mostly she thanked me for the care she received during her pregnancy and birth. She mentioned that with her first birth in Michigan she couldn't do what we were able to do here, and she was thankful that our kind of care was available to her.

We frequently hear from women who are thankful for care where they can labor freely without being tethered to the monitors, where they can use the tub for comfort, where IVs are not mandatory, and where their requests are acknowledged and implemented whenever possible, including getting the epidural (if that's part of their plan).

Today as my husband and I drive north past Flagstaff toward the Grand Canyon with all this beauty around me, those words of gratitude come back to me. I'm always amazed and grateful when I can "get outta town", but today the gratitude that's touching my heart is toward the strong, beautiful women who put their trust in us to guide them through their pregnancies and births. It' s such a gift to us to be allowed to accompany them through such a personal and intimate time in their lives, and I am truly awed and thankful to them for the lessons they teach me.

I also feel gratitude toward Bethany Women's Healthcare and Phoenix Baptist for providing the opportunity for Certified Nurse-Midwives to practice. Unfortunately, as many women know, midwifery care is very limited. I've been lucky enough to be with this practice for12 years and it's easy for me to forget how very lucky I am. I work in a very diverse practice, with wonderful supportive partners and truly beautiful women who seek care from us. Can life get any better? So, as I look at all this natural beauty surrounding me -the Vermillion Cliffs, the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon -I'm also reminded of the natural beauty of pregnancy, birth, and all the strong women I've had the pleasure of spending any time with during the past 12 years. Thank you for your trust, and the lessons you've taught me.