It's not all about the catch

Casey

Faculty: Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care
School: School of Nursing and Midwifery
Course: BSc (Hons) Midwifery
Category: Nursing and midwifery

19 November 2021

Midwifery, what a phenomenal career to work in. Being welcomed in to such a monumental moment for families, that they will go on to never forget. Every birth witnessed becomes more and more magical. There is nothing more tear jerking than seeing the look of pride in parents faces when you pass their little one up to them, after what may have been a long-awaited moment.

When people picture midwifery, the first image that comes to mind for most is a perfectly swaddled baby being handed to mum, like you see on One Born Every Minute or in movies. But I don’t think that gives you the whole picture!

Of course, it is very easy to become fixated on the number of deliveries you have assisted due to the need to delivery 40 in the space of three years. Therefore, as a student midwife the first question is always ‘how many have you caught?’ or ‘How many babies have you delivered?’ But what about all the care given prior to delivery? All the blood tests, observations, and urine dips. Or the care supplied postnatally? The clean up after delivery or the long nights supplying feeding support. Most importantly what about our care, compassion and commitment that got us in to this course in the first place?

Due to the demand on midwives, there is just not enough time given to sit and talk to women about life in general or their journey to pregnancy. It’s in this time that your form a trusting bond with women and their partners. As a student midwife, this is a prime opportunity to have that full involvement with care because you have the time to sit and give the care women require.

As much as deliveries matter on paper for qualification, most women won’t remember who was there to catch their baby, but they will remember the one who was there to hand her water when she was too exhausted, the motivation and encouragement she was given when pushing because she felt she couldn’t anymore or even the one who brings her first slice of toast and tea after delivery.

So yes, you need 40 ‘catches’ but it’s not all about the catch, it’s about the care, compassion and commitment.

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