As a registered nurse who works in a large local hospital, people assume I would feel most comfortable birthing in a highly medical environment. Quite the opposite is true. I see first hand how impersonal and disconnected medicine can be. Nurses are bound by hospital protocol and doctors are tied financially to insurance/Medicare and also fearful of lawsuits. In an effort to “do everything possible” to produce a healthy baby on a schedule that suits the staff, health care providers have little time or patience for women’s opinions, desires, or even body autonomy. You may not need much convincing though, since you are researching midwives, these issues are likely already prominent in your mind.
Why Christine then? As a medical professional, it was important to me that a midwife be knowledgeable about all the many complications that can arise with both mom and baby. I brought my skeptical husband to the initial consultation and we were both impressed with her experience, reputation, and cautious approach. Our fears were put at ease by her assurance that she would be carefully monitoring baby and me during the pregnancy/delivery and would not hesitate to transfer us to the care of a physician if necessary. In addition to her medical knowledge, Christine uses a whole range of holistic and natural techniques. She encourages body work, herbal remedies, and proper nutrition before resorting to medical treatment for pregnancy symptoms. Scheduled appointments are relaxed, thorough, and have plenty of time for questions and education. She allows the natural process of birth to unfold with minimal intervention. The mother delivers her baby, Christine is just there to catch it!
One of the best parts about working with Christine is her availability. She was always available for urgent issues and would respond quickly during business hours for routine questions or concerns. It was comforting to know that since she accepted a limited number of clients per month, I could count on her being there for the birth. She remained an important resource for me in the postpartum period as well. Not many doctors can be reached via text message! I delivered both my boys at home without complications or interventions into a calm, warm environment surrounded by loving family. I felt empowered by the experience and look back on it with wonderment and peace.
My birth story is something I am proud of. I am confident that my children’s stress free beginning has set the tone for their temperaments and inspired our parenting style. I have complete confidence in Christine and would (and have) put my and my children’s lives in her hands. Although disease processes can occur, birth itself is not pathogenic and should not be treated as such. A mother and her baby are more than a series of stats and vital signs. Christine gets that.
Tierney Hall, RN
I woke up shortly before 1 AM on Thursday, March 29 with a contraction that I knew meant we would be meeting our baby soon. I know labor is a marathon and I needed rest, so I tried to go back to sleep. Several spaced out contractions later, our 2 year old came in to climb into bed with us. I told Matt we would probably be welcoming our baby earth side sooner rather than later, and we went back to sleep. Just like with my first born, I woke to a contraction in the early hours of the morning and struggled going back to sleep, wondering when things would pick up and how different labor would be this time around. Turns out, it was very different.
By 5 AM, the contractions hadn’t picked up much. I gave up trying to sleep and decided to shower. Matt thought it would be a good idea to let the midwife team and birth photographer know I was having labor contractions, so I sent out a text before getting in the shower. When I got up to shower, the contractions really spaced out. By the time I was drying my hair, I wondered if I was really in labor or not. I let our birth team know that things really died down and that I would keep them updated in case labor took off again. Disheartened, I climbed back into bed and drifted off to sleep.
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We loved Christine so much as our midwife with baby #1 and 2, we decided to utilize her services for baby #4 even though we moved 2 hours away. She is worth the commute! We drove back to Augusta for all of our prenatal appointments, and stayed with my parents for the birth. She is very attentive and knowledgeable. She has become part of our family. She enabled us to have the birth we wanted, including helping my oldest child catch her new baby brother. It was an amazing experience for my daughter to be included and supported in her desire to be a part of this birth.
After not having the birth that I wanted with my first son, I became very interested in having a home birth. Christine is one of the only home birth midwives in the area but regardless she is the best! If I had 100 other options I would choose Christine and her team in a heart beat. Christine helped me have the amazing natural birth I dreamed of. Not only did she support me as a woman and mother, she embodied wisdom, professionalism and expertise as a midwife and mother herself. I felt confident every step of the way through my birth knowing we had Christine as our midwife! Even my husband who was completely against having a home birth was awed by the entire experience and said he wouldn’t want to do it any other way! Christine was incredible throughout my pregnancy and birth and allowed me to find an inner strength I didn’t know I had. The discussion of a third child has come up and we both agreed we would 100% have Christine as our midwife again! Thank you!