YES! And you totally should if you’re not 100% comfortable! I found it easy to do and after seeing my new one today I’m very glad I did… here’s the story.
I first saw my named midwife at my surgery about four weeks ago and I just didn’t have a good feeling about her. I’d been watching the marvellous Midwives series on TV and I just hoped for, well, more… a nice, mumsy, caring midwife who I felt I could trust. Especially after IVF I needed to know I was going to continue in the very best hands.
I guess I didn’t help the situation in a way as when she said I would have to go back and see the consultant at the hospital as IVF classed me as high risk, I asked if that was only if I chose to give birth at Northampton.
“What do you mean if you don’t go to Northampton?” #dirtylook
“Well, I’ve heard a few horror stories about the maternity unit, from some people I personally know and I’ve read others [and the hospital as a whole is almost as far down the leagues as is possible]. I wondered about Bedford as they have a birthing centre.” #awkwardface
“Northampton has a new unit opening in November. But, well, you need to be seeing someone over there then if you want to go to Bedford.” #dismissivescowl
“Oh well, I guess I don’t know yet, I suppose I need to look round them.” #illgetmycoatthen
Although it may not have started out the best way and that is partly my fault, I would have expected her to be a) reassuring about Northampton or b) supportive that I’m entitled to a choice, rather than being a total bitch.
Next, m’lord, she fucked up my due date… if my midwife can’t get it right then boy I’m in trouble, right? I’d worked it out from the extraction day, when sperm hit egg. Pretend this was normal ovulation, minus 2 weeks to supposed first day of last period, add 40 weeks… 3 June. She wouldn’t have it at all and took 40 weeks from creation, giving me 17 June. Whilst this doesn’t sound like much of an issue, it meant my 12 week scan date was late and so that’s now had to be changed today to when I’m actually 12 weeks 2 days (20 November) rather than 15 weeks 5 days (13 December). This would have been too late to have the tests for Downs and who knows what other problems it could have caused.
So, I had trust issues already and I’d only been sat there 10 minutes! This was added to when she told me I couldn’t eat goat’s cheese or feta – hmm, I don’t remember seeing those on the many no no lists I’d read – but she didn’t think to mention parmesan, which I’ve since found out. I eat loads of these cheeses so I checked and the packet of feta I had in my fridge said made with pasteurised milk. So she’s a bitch, a dick and a liar….
What really topped it off was she was so dismissive and rocked through the paperwork like I was just another pig in the pen. When I said I’d had some nausea the week before she said “oh you’re too early for that” and stated “it’s too early for blood tests, I’ll see you [I'll allow you grace me with your presence] in four weeks”. It felt like it was my fault I was there, but all I did was call my surgery and they booked me in!
So what to do, what to do? I thought I’d wait until the bloods appointment and see if she was any nicer to me. However, I had to call the gyne unit to change my consultant date the week after, as it clashed with my holiday, and I just thought I’d enquire if there was a process for changing, were there multiple midwives at my doctors or would I have to change surgery.
“I’ll pop you through to the community midwives office, they’ll change it for you.”
“That’s no problem, not everyone gets on with everybody… can I ask the reason though… I understand, no problem… someone will ring you, but I’m not sure when.”
An hour later “Hi I’m Amanda [midwife extraordinaire and lovely, lovely person]“
I saw Amanda today at another surgery in a village just outside Northampton, about 4/5 miles from my house, but I didn’t have to change my doctor. She operates from two surgeries and I can see her at either, but the other is a village is a little further away. She had called me a second time to confirm the time for today and I just got a warm feeling from both conversations and she even booked me a double appointment so she could “get to know me”. In person she was totally awesome too and sorted out the mess of the scan dates and the paperwork with a smile. She gave me more information about the consultant I’m due to see in December and just made me feel happy about everything, and I’m looking forward to seeing her on 2 January. She even took my (4 pots of – gah!) blood without hurting me and it was over in a flash. Sorry for gushing but it made my day for someone to be really nice to me… my marvellous husband didn’t even remember I had an appointment, hasn’t yet asked me how it went and the new scan date clashes with something he already has in his diary.
So if you have doubts about your named midwife I’d suggest you call the hospital, ask for the community midwives office and just ask them to assign you someone else. I assume by telling them what the issue is they can pair you up with someone who meets your needs better and if my experience is anything to go by, it was simple, I wasn’t made to feel like it was me being picky and the outcome is I feel much happier about my treatment.