“My last birth at home with SECM Philomena was one of the most amazing experiences of my life and so much of that was down to the care I received from Philomena. Philomena was strong, reliable, and always put me as the focus. She has such a silent strength about her, I felt so at ease with her in my care. I always felt that no matter what happened, Philomena would stand up for me and my beliefs. She would not lie to me and would be up front with me on my options, care, health, my baby’s health…..and yet under all that strength, she has the softest centre! She knew my darkest worries and every desire for my pregnancy, labour, birth. In the 45 weeks that she was our midwife, I felt so cared for, looked after. Philomena became a part of the family. My children still ask for her. We miss her visits!”
I laboured for a few hours at home and only went into Holles Street when I couldn’t even talk to my partner anymore. He insisted on getting me to the hospital when he couldn’t get coherent conversation out of me. In Admissions at the hospital, I couldn’t even answer basic questions, such as “is that your correct address?” I was swiftly taken by wheelchair up to Labour and Delivery and brought into a delivery room. The midwife who attended me was brilliant. Her name was Heather and she was the only person in the room besides me and my partner. She was a fountain of calm and quietness! She allowed me to push my baby out at my own pace and he was born in just over 10 minutes.
I am convinced that her lack of interference and her strong supportive presence made birth even more of a joy for our new little family. When it came time to deliver the placenta, I requested that I be given time to do this without any medication. She was absolutely supportive and I delivered the placenta easily and effortlessly within 20 minutes. I can’t thank Heather enough for her respect for my wishes in childbirth, for being totally ‘hands-off’ and for being a significant support in the birth of my first child. Maybe she will read this and know what a difference she made to our experience in hospital? If you do ever get a chance to read this, Heather (midwife in Holles Street in October 2008), please know that you had an enormous impact on my positive birth experience.