Throughout the ages, women have traditionally helped one another to give birth. The practice of midwifery is based on the understanding that pregnancy, labour and birth are profound experiences which carry significant meaning for a woman, her family and her community. Midwifery is traditionally holistic and is grounded in the principles of health and well being, recognizing that conception, pregnancy , birth and breast feeding are natural life processes.
Midwife means “with woman.” Midwifery care, by its very nature – partnering with women – requires that we see each woman and each birth as unique, then respect and nurture each woman’s individual experience. With midwifery care the woman is the center of the childbirth experience and a great influence on the health and well being of herself and her family. Midwifery care promotes self-care, personal growth, awareness, and confidence. It is delivered in a manner that is flexible, creative, empowering and supportive.
We believe in the innate strength and ability of women to give birth, and that parents have the right and responsibility to make informed, intelligent, and sensitive decisions about the manner in which they choose to give birth.
Our role is to provide skilled council, faith in your ability, a listening ear and the wisdom of experience. We provide vigilance and gentle guidance throughout your journey of pregnancy, labour, birth, breastfeeding, and early parenting.
We support you in making informed decisions regarding your birth experience, in the setting of your choice and with whom you wish to share it. It is our hope that the care we give assists not only women, but also their partners and families to confidently welcome a new child into their lives.
Prenatal visits which usually occur in our clinic (see our gallery for pictures of our space) and adhere to the recommended schedule by Alberta Health Services. Our visits are usually 30 mins but some visits may be more or less depending on your pregnancy.
Midwives are the only care providers that offer choice of birth setting. Providing you remain low risk, you may birth in your home, hospital or the Arbour Birth Center (link this). Two midwives attend every birth no matter where it occurs. Following birth, the midwives are with you for several hours to provide care to parents and baby, assist with breastfeeding, assist in newborn and self care and of course to celebrate with you and your family.
During the first week after birth, your midwives will attend your home several times to ensure all is going well. We complete a physical assessment of parent and baby, offer assistance with breastfeeding and discuss what to expect over the coming days. Once home visits are complete, you will return to in-clinic appointments at 2 & 6 weeks before being discharged from our care.
We believe nature has perfected human milk for human babies and that breastfeeding is best for babies. With the proper support and guidance, the majority of mothers will be successful with breastfeeding.
Complete midwifery care including: prenatal appointments, labour and birth, immediate and ongoing postnatal care of mother and baby, 2 and 6 week office visits, including 24 hour availability for urgent concerns, is presently covered by Alberta Health Services.