Why It Sometimes Can Suck Being a Pregnant Midwife

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There seems to be this common perception that when you’re a midwife and become pregnant that all will be fine because you know what you’re doing, you’re a midwife after all.  Well sometimes I want to scream I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M DOING! And it doesn’t just come from friends and family, it comes from fellow midwives, GPS, obstetricians, the lot. They all believe because you’re a midwife you have some special powerful uterus and an extra special cervix and vagina. Well let me let you into a little secret….. my reproductive organs are exactly the same as yours and knowledge doesn’t always give you power.

  • I sometimes secretly wish I knew nothing about pregnancy and birth and erased any of the trauma and negativity that I’ve seen
  • I actually know very little about twin pregnancies (I still haven’t decided if that”s a good thing or not)
  • If I’m ever in the SCBU I glance very quickly at the tiniest of babies and squeeze my stinging eyes together trying not to think about the ‘what ifs’
  • But it might be ok if they’re born early because the care for premature babies nowadays is so amazing
  • Every tiny cramp or bleed (I’ve been having a few of those) my mind immediately reminds me of those women I’ve looked after who’s babies were too premature to make it
  • I can never forget the 16,17 or 18 weekers who I’ve wrapped in tiny hand knitted blankets no bigger than a handkerchief and carefully taken those precious hand and foot prints for their parents to keep and treasure
  • I keep focusing on getting to the next week and might feel reassured when I hit 28 weeks
  • I still spend hours at night in bed reading other twin mum forums for reassuring stories of great outcomes at full term
  • I have no idea which one is moving when I feel them move and wonder if I ever will be able to tell them apart
  • If one more person asks me what sort of birth I’m going to have I might scream because I don’t know, I’m not thinking about it yet I’m just focusing on getting through the weeks
  • And the same goes for feeding, I have no idea how I’ll feed them hopefully with milk whether it’s my own or formula but sanity will help me make that choice
  • I keeping having thoughts about the next scan and what if there’s something wrong with one of them, or both, what if I have to make an awful decision?
  • I silently curse when it feels like my cervix is going to drop out by the end of the day but have to think rationally that it won’t (hopefully)
  • Sometimes I just want to be treated like every other normal pregnant person and not be greeted with shock/gasps/laughter from others when they hear I’m having twins
  • I’m still answering the same 4 questions – when are you due? are they identical? are there twins in your family? do you know the sex?

*Just to say it isn’t all bad there are a million perks to being a pregnant midwife for example my lovely consultant scanned me today after another little bleed and told me what we’re having*

 

12 thoughts on “Why It Sometimes Can Suck Being a Pregnant Midwife

  1. I know how you feel. I am a neonatal intensive care nurse and also 24 weeks pregnant. I am constantly setting myself goals for my baby to achieve my latest goal is to reach 29 weeks would be prefect as surfactant is made etc! I was an absolute nightmare during my 20 weeks scan making sure that they don’t miss anything with the organs. Luckily I am part of research which means I get my cervix measured regularly. I personally feel that knowing too much has taken away the enjoyment of my first pregnancy!

  2. I don’t know if this is reassuring, but I’m a the mum of a 26-weeker, who was born weighing 660g. Although we spent 4 months in SCBU, he is now 2 years 3 months and absolutely perfect. And we were in with lots of twins, and everyone made it during the whole time we were in!! The neonatal care is awesome these days.

    Good luck with the rest of your pregnancy.

    Xx

  3. My husband always told me to stop wishing my pregnancies away. I was always striving for the next antenatal milestone; 12 weeks – to know that it’s a uterine pregnancy, 20 weeks – anomaly scan, 24 weeks – viable, 28 weeks – much better prognosis, 30 weeks – bread and butter for the neonatal team etc! I couldn’t help it! By the time I got anyway near term I just changed my worries to something else; what if there’s something wrong with my baby when it’s born?! Guess what – I still worry about them now they’re here! Your’re their mother first, you just happen to be a midwife. It’s your job to worry – that’s what mothers’ do!

  4. I totally agree!! you couldn’t’ve said it better!!, being a midwife is not of any help when you’re pregnant, to me, it was even making me feel more anxious about anything I was feeling, not to mention when it comes to care and feed your baby (- es). I would advise to just go with the flow and try to enjoy cause it goes quick. xx

  5. This post made me well up. I have always thought of the lovely, new life side of being a midwife and not the other bleaker side. The things you must see. Sending love and well wishes for the weeks ahead x

  6. And what are they??? I can empathise I have been a midwife with all of my pregnancies, it’s a mixed blessing. I had an unplanned homebirth this time and people say ‘oh but you were ok you’re a midwife!’

  7. Love reading the positive stories on your blog but as a 15 week first time mum to be this post wasn’t the most pleasant of reads. Especially the bit about 16-18 weekers!! 😦
    Keep the positive stories coming, it’s nice to focus on the good stuff sometimes.

  8. Clemmie I love reading your blog.i am a mum of 12yr old b/g twins I delivered them at 39+5 wks, this was after having many bleeds through out the pregnancy. Try and relax and enjoy the fact that your amazing body is not growing one but two beautiful babies.

  9. I’m going one of each. And I’m praying that people start treating you like a ‘MUM’ when you’re at appointments, not a ‘MIDWIFE’, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that you can focus on the positives and try to ignore the professional niggly voice at the back of your head. It must be so hard, God knows it’s bad enough for a novice with Google xxx

  10. Aw Clemmie please listen to some Hypnobirthing/ hypnosis/ relaxation tracks as you go to sleep. As a pregnant midwife I too was freaking out big time and doing this helped so so much.
    As midwives we have all kinds of wrong stuff in our subconscious minds. You need some positive brain washing!
    I’m increasingly realising that Hypnobirthing is more about helping you enjoy your pregnancy more, and not just about the birth. Trust x

  11. Thank you so much for this – as a primip pregnant midwife, I’m really struggling with many of the things that you’ve highlighted and felt so isolated. It’s so good to know I’m not alone!

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