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It’s All About Options

On her son’s first birthday, Robyn Moore wanted to “honor his birth by connecting with the woman who was so important at a monumental time in my life.” She called Pam Madden, a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM) at GSH, who delivered Liam.

Good Samaritan was not the closest facility. But Robyn knew it was perfect for the unmedicated birth she wanted so she could “be fully aware and work with my body through the process. They are so supportive of mothers’ choices about the birth of their babies,” says Robyn, 33. According to Pam, the midwives at Lifestages Samaritan Center for Women are “facilitators of the family’s birth plan, which is a tool for the family and midwives to discuss available options.”

Physicians and midwives at Lifestages work with mothers on birth plans at about the sixth month of pregnancy, says Lifestages obstetrician Dr. Bill Rettig. “We give them a checklist of options,” he explains. “Do they want an epidural, a water birth, a birthing ball? Their birth plan goes at the front of the hospital chart.”

And those options are flexible, even during the birthing process. Robyn knew that she wanted to labor in her birthing room’s whirlpool tub. “Before I entered the water, the pain was 12 on a scale of 10. In the water, it went down to one,” she says. “The water’s warmth and buoyancy helped me through the contractions.” Once fully dilated, she opted to give birth in bed because she wasn’t comfortable pushing in the water.