Midwifery Care with Ronnie Falcao, LM
    Postpartum Feedback

Ornament

These are some responses to my postpartum feedback questions from my homebirth midwifery clients.  I'd like to have more, but moms with new babies don't have lots of spare time to fill out feedback forms.  Almost all of my clients have enthusiastically offered to serve as references for other families about my services for homebirth, although they don't always have time to send me written feedback.

There are also some unformatted Thank You Notes at the end of this web page.
 

Q: How do you feel about the quality of prenatal care you received?  Did I spend enough time with you?  Too much time?  What about the quality of the time?  Did you feel comfortable talking about questions, concerns or problems you were having?  What did you find most beneficial about the prenatal visits?  What was the least helpful about them?

I received fantastic prenatal care.  I don't think there is any better.  For me, information is more than power, it is peace of mind.  I was very anxious about the pain of birth.  Being able to spend so much time talking through issues (psychological, but mostly physiological) helped me immensely. - KB

Prenatal visits were great.  I really enjoyed talking - hearing stories about other births and other anecdotes.  I felt like you heard me and my requests. - AH

I consider the care I received from you excellent.  Coming to see you at such late stage of my pregnancy, it was specially important that you took your time to listen to my concerns even though we went way beyond the schedule! - CR

I thought the care I received was great.  You are very knowledgeable. - HR

We are very pleased with the quality of the prenatal care received from Ronnie. Time that we spent with her was quality. Every appointment was very friendly, relaxing and also professional. We felt comfortable talking about every question and concerns that we had. We were also satisfied with knowledgeable answers and guidance.   The reason that we chose to have a midwife, beside a peaceful and private birth, was to have someone answer our questions and concerns without any rushing, to understand and support our vegetarian life style and decision not to use medications if not necessary. We were very pleased that Ronnie met our expectations fully. It is very hard to separate what was most beneficial about our prenatal visits. We think the overall experience was excellent and a gained friendship at the end.   - NA

I enjoyed the prenatal visits - felt you were very thorough (which made DH happy!) and lad back simultaneously.  Easy to talk to (interested, concerned, etc.)  Maybe earlier visits could have been shorter - but DS and I had fun! - DD

The quality of prenatal care was excellent.  The amount of time spent was just right; it suited us perfectly.  Not only were all of our concerns addressed, but we felt comfortable and looked forward to the visits.  The prenatal visits were very reassuring and gave us the confidence we needed to go through with a home birth.  There was nothing not helpful about them.  :-) - RV

The quality of care was excellent and I felt the care was complete, so yes, you spent enough time w/me (us).  I appreciate the length of the appointments and your being so thorough.  I felt comfortable talking about everything - the personal, medical.  It was especially helpful to be able to tell you what was going on in the family as it related to the birth. - SS

All was great!  I loved not feeling rushed, that you were truly interested in my life in general as well as my pregnancy. - NM

I really appreciated all the time you spent with me.  Whenever I brought up a concern you spent a lot of time figuring out what we could do to address it.  Sometimes it was more time than I needed.  :-)  I think what was most beneficial was feeling and being assured that everything was going smoothly. -BB

I was very, very pleased with the prenatal care.  I never expected such a thorough guidance, neither did I know I can get one.  This was my second easy and healthy pregnancy, and with and Drs. I always was asked only: "Is everything OK?" - which it was, so I never got much information as to what is happening right now in my body and what should I expect or anticipate.  Getting the whole story in our meetings was great. - BAS

The care was fantastic.  I felt completely comfortable & supported.  The visits may have been a little long for DH, but he loved being so involved. -MS

I LOVED our pre-natal visits.  I looked forward to them at least a week in advance.  I especially appreciated the time you spent with me just talking, allowing the conversation to go where it naturally went, but also ensuring we covered the necessary topics.  I also have a great frame of reference having started my pre-natal care with a regular doctor.  The comparison is unfair as I felt neglected, rushed and unloved, to incredible warmth, love, compassion and not at all rushed!! Thank you. - SN

I thought it was great.  Even though it was our second baby you still took the time to make sure we were well taken care of.  I really enjoy and value how you counsel and care for the whole family not just the mother.  Most helpful is your listening and offers of help advise.  Least helpful - pee stick.  :-) - EL

I really valued the appointments.  Even though it was my 3rd pregnancy, I felt like I learned even more about pregnancy & birth.  I looked forward to being in your quiet, peaceful home and talking - and being able to really focus on my pregnancy and growing baby.  I never felt rushed or hurried and I really appreciated that.  With 2 other little ones at home - those visits were treasured! - ED

The time you have allotted for appointments was perfect for me.  You were able to answer all my questions and concerns.  You have put me at ease from the moment I met you.  You have a very calming effect on me.  Also you were great with my daughter, which really helped! - JH

I loved every pre-natal visit.  We had all our questions answered.  I was very comfortable talking and sharing about my concerns and the smallest/trivial discomforts.  The most beneficial was having long visits and having all my concerns addressed because that helped me get closer to you before delivery. - SP

You've spent so much time with us!  Always more than we expected, but it was always very nice - Time just flies during your visits!  Most beneficial to me: explanation you provided of all the pregnancy changes, issues, etc.  I was confident you knew everything is fine with us.  Least beneficial? - I can't tell! - MB

Great.  It was nice to be able to email you, and to know that I can leave a message on your phone at any time without waking you.  It was nice how patient you were with DD and all the distractions you have there.  DH thinks they are pleasant but rather long and chatty, good for me. - MP

I honestly wish I could have been under your care from the beginning of my pregnancy.  You were so much more personable, attentive and caring than my other group of midwives combined.  The prenatal visits seemed to be just the right length and I felt totally comfortable around you right away.  The comfort of your office, long with all the books you lent me and the visual aids you use to discuss pregnancy issues were all beneficial.  Going to your home the first time was intimidating; I'm used to a more clinical setting. - EK

I am very pleased w/the quality of prenatal care I received.  I was extremely comfortable w/you from the start.  You answered all of my questions/concerns, and never rushed our appointments along.  I like that you informed me of issues and respected my decisions. - MW

Quality of care was immeasurable.  I felt very well cared for.  Time at appts. was awesome.  Never felt rushed or had questions un-answered.  I enjoyed the fact that you cared not only for my physical health but also for my mental health. - MS

It's so nice that you're basically a midwifery encyclopedia.  Any question or concern I had, I could come to you.  If you didn't know something, or if it was out of scope, you let me know and would research it.  So informative compared to the obstetrician's office. - RK

I feel that the prenatal visits were very beneficial.  I learned more from you than any other doctor.  I felt cheated by other Dr. after your visits, you never rushed them.  I was able to ask any questions,  you helped DH feel more involved in the pregnancy.  You always had a glass of water that was great.  You know I'm sorry I really can't think of anything that was not helpful about them. - NC

The prenatal care was excellent!  You treated the whole family not just the baby.  We really enjoyed our visits.  In fact, I really miss them.  Talking freely and the rapport you established enabled us to talk freely.  Can't think of least helpful. - EL

Absolutely top notch quality care.  Thank you so much for always taking so much time to thoroughly address everything.  I definitely felt comfortable telling you my concerns, which is great because I am usually withdrawn.  I appreciate that you addressed even my most minimal concerns with great fervor.  Also beneficial was that you had a book for anything I brought up!  DH also appreciates how you pay a lot of attention to the dad too! - JB

I felt very good about the quality of care you gave me.  You answered all my questions completely and spent a good amount of time with me at each visit.  I felt very comfortable with you from the start.  The most beneficial aspect of the visits were the amount of emotional support you were able to provide and hearing the baby's heartbeat. - MM

Great!  I had to ride hard on DH sometimes, but I enjoyed all our sessions.  Much better than an OB/GYN.  And I appreciate the evening hours. - CM

I felt I've received excellent prenatal care.  The amount of time you spent with us is perfect - I didn't feel rushed at all. I always felt that the time was very well spent.  I left your home feeling more confident & positive every time. (I really mean this; your enthusiasm is really contagious.)  We felt very comfortable discussing all our questions & problems w/you.  Most beneficial -  your reassurances & honesty. - AM

Prenatal care was fantastic.  In fact, your willingness to spend so much time and effort was what led to my decision to use your services rather than those of an OB.  We both felt totally comfortable at all times, something definitely not true w/doctors.  I especially appreciated your encouraging me to read and do research of my own. - AU
 

Q: How do you feel about the quality of care you received during your labor and birth?  Did we fulfill your expectation of the roles we would perform and the way we would act?  Is there anything you would have liked us to do differently?  What was the most helpful?  If applicable, how do you feel about this experience compared to the other times that you have given birth??

I felt very safe and cared for during labor & birth.  I appreciated the peacefulness & respect for my process.  I "expected" more "techniques" to be offered (by the doula moreso than midwife) - but in the end they weren't necessary - just something I had pictured in my mind.  In reality, my mind was plenty busy with what was already going on. - KB

Birth experience was awesome.  You exceeded my expectations both in your professionalism and "invisibility".  You knew just when to talk, ask questions, and when to let me work.  Time directly after the birth was great too.  Much more relaxing compared to previous birth experience.  I felt so much stronger afterward, too. - AH

You couldn't have done anything better to help me more - You were there when I needed and knew exactly when to provide me with my space.  I actually never met someone so respectful of others space, yet very caring and present. - CR

Yes, you were there when I needed you.  This experience was much better!!  - HR

We were also very pleased with the care during the labor. I was very comfortable with Ronnie because we develop a relaxed relationship over the nine months. She was there just enough to help when she was needed but otherwise almost invisible, as not to interfere with the beautiful private moments for our family (Just like we wanted). The whole experience was delightful. We wouldnít change anything. This was our first birth, no other experiences, but it was like I imagining it being (perfect!)  I need to emphasize the most helpful for me was that Ronnie stayed six hours after birth to make sure that our daughter is fine because of strep B group that I had. I could relax and soak up the beautiful moments knowing that our daughter is fine.

Awesome!  More than what I hoped for.  Calm, supportive - wonderful. - DD

The quality of care was excellent.  We were so comfortable and confident with your presence knowing that we could trust your judgment.  We were very happy with the care you and your assistant gave us.  It was most helpful to know you because of the prenatal visits, so we could experience the birth for what it was.  Your calm and reassuring ways were very very helpful.  Your suggestion to change position really helped me. - RV

It was great that you came right over and that you stayed until the care was complete.  You did all you could do to help ease my way through labor and birth.  I really felt as though I needed your opinion and I trusted that opinion!  The most helpful was your perspective when the traditional forms of care (MD,  hospital) are so limited.  You provide what they don't and more.  This was my most difficult birth.  Maybe knowing more about the herbs would have been helpful - but we were very satisfied with your care. - SS

This was the best part of your care.  The birth was as close to perfect as possible (pain free would have been ideal!) I felt so comfortable w/you there.  I felt in control of how things went. - NM

During labor and birth I felt like you were a star.  :-) esp at the first birth your ability to make decisions about how to get us progressing to the birth was fantastic - you never rushed me but kept things going and we did it despite the slow progress!  At the second birth, I felt totally confident I was in good hands, but we kind of did it ourselves that time. - BB

I am very satisfied.  I was happy to not have you there (nor offense . . . ) and I felt we were ready and confident.  Your confidence in us, conveyed through the phone, was helpful and reassuring. - BAS

I was so grateful for all the effort you went to in order to understand our preferences & desires prior to the labor & birth so we could realize those desires as labor unfolded.  Since my contractions never regulated to "active labor", I felt like I would have liked to have you there in a bit of a doula role for more of the time, but was hesitant since I knew we weren't supposed to call until labor was "active". - MS

You were AMAZING!! Your guided meditation CD (in your voice) was most helpful.  At 3 am when I needed the wisdom and strength of my midwife, you were there!  I recommend this to anyone.  There was something very re-assuring about hearing your voice!! During birth you were just what my husband and I needed.  You knew exactly how involved you needed to be, giving my husband and I the feeling of closeness and intimacy during the birth, but also confidence that all was under control. - SN

This birth was fantastic.  I liked being able to labor alone and call you when needed.  Your advice to take a nap was excellent.  I thought my first birth was great, this was even better.  I believe the expectation you and I set up beforehand for a quick easy birth made it so. - EL

I felt extremely well cared for and was confident in your skills and knowledge as a midwife.  I'm surprised by the lack of memories I have of you or your assistant during labor and even the birth.  I knew you were there, but I really appreciated your low profile.  I only remember you when I needed you - for example - suggesting getting into the tub, saying some calming words when I was losing it, etc.  I felt more "in charge" of this birth than my first 2. - ED

During the birth everything went the way we had discussed.  Having my baby at home was so smooth and relaxed compared to my first birth.  I guess the only thing that would've been nice, but unrealistic, would've been for you to take the tub with you!  I really appreciated all the cleanup you did do.  - JH

I am satisfied with the quality of care I received.  Though my birth experienced was not as good as expected, I am sure we did the best in those circumstances. - SP

Excellent!  It actually exceeded our expectations.  Things that struck me as very helpful - your relaxation and breathing during my contractions in a tub - it helped me a lot, and your steady support when we walked to the back bedroom.  The whole experience was far better than the first birth, and it wasn't bad either.  Breathing with your assistant helped me a lot, too, as well as holding hands. - MB

Great.  Thanks for the reminder re: birthing the placenta.  I think I was feeling "finished" after the baby again.  Glad to get time to cuddle with baby this time.  Made a big difference.  Nice to have had more sleep.  I remember thinking, "How does she do this all the time!"  DH said "Great.  Went smoothly."

The birth was awesome!  It was everything I wanted it to be.  You have a calmness and peacefulness that exudes from you, it's infectious!  The most helpful thing I got from you was guidance.  Having you there made labor and birth a step-by-step process.  It was much easier for me to reach each little milestone rather than focusing on the big picture.  I wouldn't change the experience one bit, except maybe baby's having a smaller head!  - EK

This labor and birth experience was amazing.  You did an amazing job!  I like that I was given my own space and allowed to do whatever I pleased.  I also appreciated your advice during the labor - you didn't force me to do anything; you made subtle suggestions.  You trusted and had faith in my body's ability to birth, even when I wa worried about things taking too long.  This birth experience was awesome! - MW

Again this quality of care was incredible.  You were patient, guiding, and extremely  helpful.  This compared to my first birth is night and day.  I look back upon my son's birth and even though it was tough, I feel strong and empowered.  I couldn't have done it without you Ronnie! - MS

I've never felt so supported as I did during the labor and birth by you, my husband and my aunt.  I'm so grateful for that experience in and of itself.  - RK

The quality of care was awesome; I was truly amazed at the way you came in and the energy that you brought, you never made me feel uncomfortable.  The only think I would have like to have been different was maybe having a smaller baby!  The experience was uncomparable to a regular birth.  There was more of a bond and connection with baby, DH, earth, I was able to feel more spiritual about the whole thing. - NC

Well I really had a fantastic birth.  The quality of care was excellent.  You truly listened to me & just let me be.  I appreciate the organic nature of my birth.  I was allowed to do my job & supported in a natural way.  I especially appreciated your assistance with DH (keeping him low-key).  Another thing that was especially helpful was your attitude - you really exude confidence that really allowed me the peace of mind to birth without worry. - EL

I couldn't have asked for a better birth!  Although we didn't page you in time, you still helped shape the labor because you spent so much time helping me get ready psychologically during prenatal visits.  And DH LOVED being able to catch the baby. - JB

Once again, the quality of care and your deep sense of reverence for the whole family experience was wonderful.  My expectations were met and I can't think of anything you could have done differently.  I really appreciated the time alone to labor and the low voices.  This was the perfect birth experience except that I should have entered the tub before my water broke.  I should have labored in there all along.  The water temperature was a bit too hot for hard labor! - MM

While I might have wanted it to go differently, I wouldn't change anything that did happen.  I was glad to have you at the hospital.  And I'm glad you had the pull toy.  I also appreciate the nursing assistance in the delivery room, in spite of their attitude. - CM

I felt that you and your assistant were both there for me at the birth.  Again, I felt reassured by your presence (that everything is going to be alright.)  I think I was deep in "labor land" and everything is still a haze.  I remember feeling more relaxed & less frightened once you got here. - AM

I really didn't know what to expect during birth, and both you and your assistant went so far beyond any expectations I might have had.  Your willingness to stay with me for so long and to physically help me when I needed it were some of the things that enabled me to give birth after such an exhausting labor. - AU
 

Q: Is there anything else about your birth that you wish had been different?  (Please feel free to use this as an opportunity to vent about anything - from the color of my Scrubs top to the unchangeable circumstances of your birth.)

[This is a question I added later, so there aren't as many responses yet.]

Really, there is nothing I wish had been different.  Even the few minutes you accidentally stood in front of the camera (you didn't know was there) added to the beauty of the day (swaying).  And you never blocked anything remotely interesting! - KB

I wish I had been better prepared to handle the pain.  I assumed the water was going to take most of the pain away.  When it didn't I was surprised and then unprepared for the journey ahead.  The herbal pain relief helped a lot, as did encouragement. - AH [Ronnie: This was a BIG baby!  Most women do find that the birthing tub is great pain relief for the opening of the cervix.]

Realistically speaking :-) I couldn't have had a better birthing experience. - CR

Nothing that I would expect from you.  :-)  Of course, I would have loved for the pain to last 30 seconds instead of a couple hours.  :-)  - HR

There is really nothing, not a bit, that I wish was different. Like I said everything was PERFECT!  - NA

Hmmmm.  Not in the middle of the night.?  :-)  - DD

Everything was really good.  If anything I wish that the labor was shorter and the pain less intense.  :-) - RV

As I said above, maybe knowing more about the herbs.  I'm the kind that wants to hear it verbally rather than looking things up just because I do that all day for work.  I also really appreciate the care you gave my baby - very complete! - SS

No. - NM

I do feel like the "lactation community" is out of touch with how much pressure many moms (at least me & the other moms I come in contact with) are under to breastfeed at least for the first year.  Despite stories of doctors recommending weaning, my experience has been that it seems almost taboo to my doctors to recommend weaning.  Every doctor & every parenting magazine is constantly telling us "breast is best".  If a mom doubts her ability to breastfeed, I think there's probably a good reason.  And I think if I had given up trying to breastfeed earlier we would all have had a much better first year.  Sorry to rant -- this is still an upsetting experience for me. - BB

It was perfect. - BAS

I wish the baby's head would have molded more quickly.  :-)  No, we loved our experience so much.  I do think I would have liked you there for a couple more hours somewhere in the middle of labor just to break things up a bit & give us some additional labor tools (such as trying different positions to help w/the back labor a bit earlier maybe?) I thoroughly enjoyed our birth though & completely appreciated & trusted your help.  Thank you!  We love you! - MS

The placenta took too long - not sure of how it could have been different.  Also those damn hemorrhoids - they are finally going away  2 1/2 months later! - EL

No. Nothing, it was all so perfect.  Actually, the only thing I would have liked was to arrange someone to take photos or video the birth.  Because DH was so involved (we thought he could do it all) we didn't get many pictures / /footage.  Next time we will ask someone close to be involved.  Once again Ronnie I have nothing but love and appreciation for the entire experience.  The tub was DIVINE!  I couldn't have done it without the comfort of the warm water!! - SN

Q: How do you feel about the quality of postpartum care you received?  Was it sufficient?  Was the care given to your baby satisfactory?  What was the most helpful?  Is there anything you wish I had done differently during your postpartum period?

The postpartum care was unbelievable.  If only more women had the opportunity to be that well taken care of.  Really couldn't have asked for more.  I felt the baby was in amazing hands.  I'm thankful for the recommendation of Dr. Sonneman. - KB

I was sad I wasn't able to afford more postpartum care.  I enjoyed my postpartum visits tremendously.  Inn hindsight, I wish I'd had fewer distractions during those visits so I could have savored them more. - AH

Both DH and I feel so grateful for your postpartum visits - You assured us that we were doing fine, which was so crucial since we had no family around.  The kindness you treated DB will always be in my memory.  When you came to do the baby screening test, poked her heel with such care that she didn't cry . . . that is really precious! - CR

I felt I received more and better care than at my pediatrician office or OBGYN. - HR

Postpartum care was great and sufficient too. Ronnie always spent more time with us, checking first that everything is fine with mom and baby, and later to answer ANY questions and doubts that we had. We felt her as a friend. We always kept her longer sharing our new experience. She is a very good listener.   - NA

Great, again.  Felt so well cared for.  Appreciated that you stayed until I was clearly on the road to recuperation.  And loved that you came here so frequently.  Great.  - DD

The postpartum care we received form you was wonderful, informative and wholesome.  It was more than we could ask for.  You were wonderful with the baby and that helped us being new parents to be more relaxed and learn how to care for the baby. - RV

The postpartum care helped me get through the nervousness you cannot help but feel after giving birth.  Thank you for coming over when I had a little scare. - SS

It was more than I expected.  I felt very supported. - NM

I love having your postpartum visits & felt I had good care.  I think having at-home weighings and general support was the most helpful. - BB

I was happy with it.  It was very much appreciated that you did not press us with the PKU test, but came back a week later to take the blood.  Our first experience (with our first daughter) was traumatic, and I was happy to do it the right way this time. - BAS

It was fabulous. - MS

Postpartum care was excellent and thorough.  Because I got so emotionally involved with you and the whole pre-natal experience, the post-natal experience was a little strange, given there was a lot going on, physical healing, emotional changes, oh and a new baby.  But as far as the care itself, you were excellent (the rest only related to my mental state). - SN

Excellent.  I appreciate the friendly forcefulness of keeping me in bed to heal.   I also like once again your treating the whole family not just the mom.  The thoughtful touch of extra essential oils was very helpful. - EL

I felt very well cared for.  I appreciated how long you and your assistant stayed after the birth.  Even after all the immediate post-birth stuff was over, and the three of us were in our bedroom, it was reassuring to know you were doing your midwife stuff out in the kitchen.  I also appreciated your "keeping tabs" on my emotional state. - ED

I think the only thing I would've changed about the postpartum visits would've been to start them a little earlier in the evening.  Having you remind me to take care of myself was helpful.  I really appreciated the gentleness you showed to my baby.  - JH

The postpartum care had been better than I expected.  I was happy that good care was given to my baby at the comfort of my house, unlike the conventional pediatric care. - SP

I felt confident that you were handling the unusual situation with our baby well and safely.  You've spent a lot of time with us, and I very much appreciate your work.  It saved us a lot of pain - if our baby had to go to a pediatrician.  The care overall was excellent! -  MB

I assume it was fine.  I didn't notice anything amiss.  It's nice that you do check so often.  And that you came to check on his breathing even though I wasn't too worried.  I also appreciate reminders to slow down and how you would help me do that. - MP

Excellent postpartum care.  It was so nice having you come to see us in our home.  Great care for baby, too.  I worried about every little thing.  Weighing him and knowing he was breastfeeding well and gaining weight was a great relief.  - EK.

The postpartum care I received was great.  I also appreciated the various handouts, many of them I found very informative.  Care given to my baby was A++! - MW

I found the postpartum care to be very helpful and re-assuring.  Especially with the jaundice and breastfeeding problems it was nice having your presence those first days. - MS

Fine.  Yes.  Yes.  Checks for swelling were reassuring that everything was normal.  No.  - RK

Postpartum . . . the care I received was great, Baby's care was great, the homeopathics really helped me get through some rough times.  There should be a postpartum tea, with happy herbs to help you get through what you have to do.  Ronnie, you're awesome!  - NC

Post-partum care was great.  Definitely came enough, those first few visits were crucial.  I saved up my problems & I didn't have to worry I knew you were coming over & I felt relieved.  Help with nursing & just talking also all the encouragement were most helpful. - EL

Thank you for being patient during 34d stage.  I know it took a long time and I appreciate that you didn't alarm me about it.  Avery's care was great.  Most helpful: breastfeeding help. - JB

Postpartum care was excellent and I believe my baby received excellent care as well.  The adult diapers and frozen pad were a major improvement from those old belts!  The frozen pad was very soothing - I wished I had more than one. - MM

Excellent!  Home visits - what a concept!  We really appreciated the positive reinforcement. - CM

The postpartum care was wonderful.  It was again beyond my expectations.  You were very gentle & considerate w/me and the baby.  Your presence was most helpful - answering our questions/concerns & encouragement. I wish we could have the heel stick taken care of, but I know you really tried. - AM
 

Q: Did you ever have any trouble paging me when you needed to?

No.  I didn't have to page you.  - EK.

Didn't need to. - MW

It took a while to hear from you about some discomforts (I didn't page you), but no problem for due date & labor. - RK

No. - NC

[I discontinued this question.]
 
 

Q: How do you feel about the use of herbs and hypnotherapy and the audio/visual resources?

After the birth, I was a bit out of it and didn't process all the pages of postpartum instructions well enough.  I was in the full "being taken care of" patient role.  So, I missed the instructions about Arnica & a few other things I could have done to speed or smooth recovery. - KB

Afterpain herbs - great.  Also homeopathics for nerve pain - St. John's Wort? [Ronnie - yes, called hypericum in the homeopathics world.]  Watched many DVDs; favorites: So Am. midwife's birth, Russian waterbirths, another 1st birth DVD - beautiful woman, dark hair, birthed at birthing center. [Did you feel that these helped you?  If so, how?] Yes! Re-programmed me to imagine a healthy, natural birth.  Helped to see it over and over.  Made me conscious of women birthing around the world. - AH

I used the Doc Chris Prenatal Tea from 36 weeks on.  I used a lot of arnica after the birth.  It was very helpful. I used a floral essence called "Birthing Harmony" from Desert Alchemy. - CR

I didn't have time to use them.  :-) - HR

I think they helped? - DD

I took all the herbs that were suggested, but I don't know if they helped or not. - RV

The herbs helped to relax me. - SS

Arnica was enough to handle after birth pains. - NM

Very very much.  It made my labor short and strengthened my womb and uterus for a speedy birth. - BAS

I'm not sure.  I do know I had the quickest, most comfortable "recovery".  I experienced the least discomfort this time. - ED

Whatever herbs that I took that got labor going a few days early made my husband's time off even better.  - JH

Arnica helped decreasing the postpartum aches. - SP

I think they helped.  I think the birth went a lot like I imagined it.  Arnica helped so much - I had so little discomfort that it totally surprised me. - MB

As you know, I try to avoid using substances.  I didn't use much!  The tapes were really good for me.  I think it also helped that it was your familiar voice, but the static was a bit loud.  A CD would be good! - MP

The herbs you gave me really seemed to help.  Especially the Centered Mama tincture.  - EK.

I used your tapes a lot, and took the herbs faithfully with my supplements. - RK

Very good!  Don't leave home without them. - NC

Absolutely.  I loved the tape; it helped me really relax when I couldn't do it myself. - EL

I am normally unwilling to take medication, and of course herbs can be potent medication - but I did get more comfortable about it as the pregnancy progressed.  By the end & postpartum I was happy to take herbs.  I feel they did help me.  Also, I LOVED your audio tape.  Great imagery. - JB

Herbs are a wholesome and welcome change from unsafe & un-natural medicines.  Hypnotherapy helps to a degree (for relaxation). - MM

If we do it again, we're doing hypnotherapy.  I liked the herbs. - CM

Personally, I don't "believe" in herbs or hypnotherapy.  However, I trusted you and was then open to the herbs. - AM

Postpartum care for both of us was much appreciated.  I was so glad to have that kind of care, when it is not available from doctors.  The care the baby received was wonderful.  I do not know how most women feel after birthing, but I felt like I had been run over by a bus.  I wish DD had not had to endure a hospital stay, but I was glad of it for myself.  We would have needed help at home, so I would encourage you to let women know that they may need a lot of help & to arrange for it ahead of time.  I know I didn't realize how much I would need. I would encourage you to arrange a couple of live prenatal hypnotherapy sessions before distributing the tape.  I'm rather indifferent to the herbs, but I appreciate your not insisting on them.  - AU
 

Q: What was your favorite DVD?

Favorite is not really the term, but the one that most made an impact on me was the Birth of Neko Pilara - it was a very difficult labor and the images were very raw.   It really made me think of "the worst case scenario" - and that it was possible to make it. - CR

Q: Do you think the fees were appropriate?

I think it was cheaper than a hospital birth.  - EK.

Yes - I really appreciate your understanding of our financial problems and the willingness to work w/us. - MW

Yes. - RK

Yes, I think you should be paid more. - NC

It's like the VISA commercial:
"Blood test: $150.
Prenatal care with Ronnie: priceless."
(I don't know what the final cost will be but it will be worth it.) - JB
 

[I discontinued this question after realizing that a hospital birth cost about 4 times my fee.]
 

Q: I realize how important each pregnancy and birth is in your life.  I try to add a special intimacy and friendship to the experience, to make the changes of pregnancy a time of growth and fulfillment and the transformation of birth a sacred and joyful event.  Did I meet these goals for you??

Completely.  Thank you.  - KB

Yes!  DS's birth is one of my most treasured memories and one I think about a lot.  The other day, out of the blue, DH said to me, "You know, I'm really glad we did the homebirth.  It was great and worth every penny." - AH

YES! - CR

Yes! - HR

Ronnie, yes you did meet the goals! It was comforting to have a friend (thatís you ;)) help us with the birth of our daughter. You made this possible because of the time we shared during our check up visits leading up to the birth.  - NA

Definitely.  - DD

Yes!  You helped us have a baby were we look back with pride and joy.  And knowing you is a wonderful experience for us.  We have told everyone we met about you!  :-) - RV

Oh yes! - I really felt I could trust you and that you had a heart for what you were doing and cared about me in the process. - SS

Yes! - NM

I remember my babies' births as very joyful and sacred events.  I especially treasure the memory of my first baby's being so alert and looking all around after he was born. - BB

Very much.  Thank you. -BAS

Absolutely.  You demonstrated complete professionalism w/a perfect balance of friendship & intimacy that was appreciated beyond expression! - MS

You met and exceeded them, as I truly felt a loss of a close friend / support when our birthing relationship ended.  You hold a very very special place in my heart and I look forward to our next birthing experience together!! - SN

Yes! - EL

Definitely.  When I knew my previous midwife wouldn't be able to attend our third birth, I was so disappointed.  But it turned out to be such a special experience.  My baby's birth, with you as midwife, was the most empowering birth of the three. - ED

Yes!  - JH

Absolutely!  It felt pretty bad that our visits were over.  We will always remember you as a good friend. - SP

YES!  - MB

Yes.  It's always great to get a chance to spend time with you anyway. - MP

Yes.  I felt you were a special person the first time I met you.  I couldn't have had a better birth or pregnancy.  - EK.

You sure did!  Although you were my midwife, it felt as if you were a mother figure during my pregnancy, labor and birth. - MW

Yes! - MS

Definitely. - RK

Yes. - NC

ABSOLUTELY. - EL

Absolutely!  We always look forward to visits with you!  The fact that you were so knowledgeable about us made us so secure so that we could enjoy the experience. - JB

Yes! - MM

Yes. - CM

Definitely.  I've enjoyed all our meetings (always looked forward to our next appointment).  We felt that we can really count on you (beyond the professional level). - AM

Absolutely. - AU
 

Q: Do you have any further comments?  Please feel free to add additional sheets of paper about anything else you'd like to add.  I value your thoughts tremendously, and you do me a great service to provide honest feedback.  Thank you!?

The only thing I can suggest, is in addition to all the detailed pages of info and instructions, you also provide bulletted or numbered summarized checklists for what to buy/do/read etc.  I found myself highlighting and having to go back & review things to pull out the things I needed to do and being afraid of missing something. - KB

I am sorry but I really have no complaints . . . and I am a a VERY critical person.  You did way more than I could possibly wish for! - CR

I wish I could give you some areas to improve on but I really can't.  You were awesome and exceeded our expectations! - HR

We can not think of anything to suggest you how to improve your practice. You are doing your job with full heart and like that there no place for true mistakes. We believe that working with heart, like you do, you are able to fill every personís needs and meet every goal.  Thank you for giving us such a wonderful, unique experience. We are so please to know you and have you be a part of our lives. You may feel free to give our names as a reference for prospective clients. We will be more than happy too share our experience.  - NA

I wrote about William's birth on my weblog (I had so many NY friends dying to hear how a homebirth went!)  You're welcome to use any of that, as well as this.  Thank you!  - DD

I personally felt that everything about the birth was really good.  The only change I will make in a future birth is to have the room and house cleaned up fully after the birth because a messy room does not enable me to relax.  I get all worried over it.  So we'll have extra help come in for that.  I also felt that in my case since I experienced pretty severe postpartum depression extra reassurance would have been good during the initial postpartum days. - RV

I would have loved to have the added service of childbirth preparation from you.  I know that is a lot on top of the services you already provide. - SS

The only thing I can think of . . . Ideally we could have had more prenatal home visits.  I didn't expect that but it would have been so helpful since I had my older daughter and long distance to travel to see you. - NM

Ronnie, it's not that I'm trying to be polite, it just that it was a wonderful experience and I have nothing to suggest for improvement. - BAS

Well, what can I say, other than, Ronnie, I really love you and value all you have done for me and many other women, babies and fathers! For me you were a mother, friend and trusted doctor all rolled into one.  And given we just moved to the US, you made the experience an incredibly supported and memorable one.  My only suggestion is to keep doing what you are doing, take on like-minded young midwives to continue your way of care, write the book you told me about, look after yourself, take vacations because the world needs you!! - SN

Thank you again for another amazing birth; you are such a wonderful midwife.  I am so glad we could share this special time. - EL

I often think of my baby's birth and have such special memories.  I'm so grateful for the experience.  Thank you. - ED

Ronnie - you made my whole pregnancy and birth a dream fulfilled!  Such a contrast to the typical medical model.  - JH

Don't change!  Please continue doing what you are doing.  I wish you success, happiness and health through your life.  Thank you! - SP

Ronnie, your practice is already the dream of every conscious woman.  :-)  If you want to do more, you can create the place on your web site where families would meet.  - MB

I like your handouts.  Especially the one about getting batteries, film, etc.  Life is much more hectic this time around, and it was great to have your nice lists.  If I were you, I'd be a bit more conventional on baby sleep - Sears' Web page or API page has a list on how to make co-sleeping safe. - MP

I was so thankful to have you and your assistant at the birth.  Thank you for being such a helpful, caring midwife.  Having you and your library as a resource was a huge bonus.  - EK.

Ronnie, you are doing an incredible job.  Keep up the good work.  I will recommend you to anyone considering a homebirth.  If we have another baby we would love for you to be our midwife again.  Thanks a million! - MS

Your support through the birth was great, and I loved how you came right into the energy that was going on.  It was very comforting to know you through my pregnancy.  Doctors don't do that and that really helped me with the birth.  I really can't think of anything I would change, the time you spent with us, the questions you answered, everything was great and everything helped.  Thank you! - NC

Ronnie, we are so grateful you are/were our midwife.  You made the birth of our daughter a special and momentous occasion.  I cannot thank you enough; you really read our personalities and sought out our wants & needs.  I sincerely appreciate your talent and intuition. - EL

I may have been your most worrying client - but by the time I was in labor, I had absolutely no concerns floating around.
In summary: Ronnie, you are wonderful! - JB

The only thing I have left to say is thank you for all the personal, individualized attention. - MM

I'd say give out your pager protocol right up front. [I've made this change.] - CM

Ronnie, we really cannot thank you for everything (pre & post natal care.  Your friendship, reassurance & your relaxed manner).  We've learned a lot from you about birth, labor, baby care and life.  I don't know how I could have done it w/o you.  You are a real joy!   One thing I think would have been helpful for me is maybe to meet or talk to someone (previous patient) about their experience (Big Sister(Mother), Little Sister mentor) . . . probably a hard thing to set up since moms are usually busy.  The Birthing From Within classes were also invaluable - meeting the other moms-to-be was also helpful.  I guess I just didn't know anyone else who is doing this at home & being w/the other moms was very reassuring. - AM

One of the things I appreciated most was that fact that I could count on your honesty and openness.  Thank you also for being so available if I had a question or needed support. - AU
 
 

Q: Do you have any words of wisdom to pass along to other birthing women?

[This is a new question, so there aren't many responses yet.]

Never underestimate the power of your mind and body working together.  Prepare your whole self for the birthing experience and you will have the "tools" you need to do the work! - AH

Birth is not about thinking, nor about needing to feel "one with the universe" (although I am sure it helps  :-)  )  The body knows what to do, even if consciously we think we can't do it, our body has a mind of its own; it is indeed "a mindful body!" - CR

Miscellaneous Comments at a Birth

You have the most underpaid job in the world. - NC

You always had everything I needed right there. - MB
 

Other Miscellaneous Comments

One of my clients moved away and sent me this e-mail during a subsequent pregnancy.  I think of you so often through this process, and want to tell you that the other midwives I'm getting care from at the center are so far under your league it's amazing. I mean, they're probably great midwives, but in terms of the whole experience of YOU versus them, the appointments, your care, etc. etc., there's just no way they compare. I wanted you to know that I very often miss you and the wonderful time I had being pregnant and visiting your cozy room. - TB

Thank you for your never ending support, knowledge, and kindness.  The birth experience was exactly what I have always wanted.  We will never forget it.  Thank you for helping us to attain what is one of our most treasured memories.  You are a great midwife!  Love, J, J & I
 
 

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    Thank You Notes


Dear Ronnie,
A heartfelt thank  you to you for all the care you've given to [the three of us].  From all the personal attention during our prenatal visits, including being available to us in between appointments via phone and email, to the unwavering support during labor at our home and birth at the hospital, your presence has been invaluable.  We have learned so much from you and felt fully supported by you that it is unimaginable how we could have navigated the maze of pregnancy, birth and postpartum in the modern medical system without your honest, straightforward and professional advice on the safest, most natural birth.  Our hats off to you for choosing a profession that suits you so perfectly and one that will benefit greatly from your being a part of it.  Thank you for being you!
All our best, SS and family

Thank you again for giving her the most gracious, peaceful, magical birth one could hope for!  - LS
 
 

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