The variety of reasons that I could say would be because I still needed to figure it out, I didn't want other people's well intended advice to obstruct my own instincts or that I didn't want to let anyone down. The no reason at all is simply that. I didn't want to. Not yet.
And then, just like a sudden change of the wind, so I had a sudden change of heart. I also had a wonderful talk with a truly inspirational, beautiful and kind woman that I am honored to call a friend. Explaining it all to her, while she surely didn't hide her surprise, made me realize that there is no reason why I can't share with everyone else.
The anticipation, right?! Man, I feel like I have been keeping an early pregnancy a secret - which, if you ask me, really IS the best kind of secret to keep.
I share my journey on these little pages of "Wouldn't Change A Thing" because I love to write. I also love to keep in contact with those that mean the world to me, whether or not I know them personally. I like to be inspired by your stories and comments, I like to inspire and I LOVE to allow you a little glimpse inside my head. My thoughts, my feelings and my emotions are something that I am taking more charge of lately and something that I am realizing that, because I am quite sensitive, can also be quite raw. I don't mind sharing that with you all. In fact, I like it. It helps me feel less crazy, if that makes sense.
You have all been alongside this midwifery student dream journey for a bit. You have lifted me when I needed carrying, applauded me when I received an interview and dusted me off when I received my rejection. You have been honest, supportive, loyal and compassionate. For that, I give you all personal, huge, tight and meaningful hugs. Stop reading for a minute. Feel it? It's there. It's real. Thank you.
Now that we have hugged like we meant it, I am going to tell you the truth. I don't think I want to be a midwife. (insert gasps here. Or maybe for some of you, shrugs and "who cares." Either way, thanks for reading and reacting.)
I am going to sound like an old, rusty broken record when I say,
When I was expecting Alanna I was coming into my womanhood. Freshly married and new to owning our own home, a lot of changes were happening. And then Alanna was brewing inside of me and something shifted. Intensely. I was going to be a mother. I was going to birth this child and raise her. I looked into midwifery before I even knew what they did because I was pulled to them. I immediately felt a deep connection to their worthiness and amazing power in a woman's life. My midwives raised me up and gave me the last piece of the womanhood puzzle: empowerment. And just like that, I was hooked.
Long story short, two more babies later and many a months nursing babies, and I feel even more deeply in love with midwifery. Everything about them I respected (and still respect, more than ever).
I began thinking about midwifery as a profession when Aubrey was not even a year. I can even tell you the exact place I was sitting and who was talking when it came over me. The seed was planted.
After Alden's birth it didn't take long for me to begin taking classes to be able to apply to midwifery. The rest you guys probably know. I consumed myself with as much midwifery related material as I could. I took course after course, read book after book, talked to ANYONE that had even the beginning of a pregnancy belly started, as I felt it was my right. I was going to be a midwife after all - so why couldn't I ask that complete stranger what her birth plan was?
And then I was rejected from Mac. Bam. And then I frantically looked for another way - BAM Birthwise in Maine. And THEN I realized that I would be insane to be away from my family for long periods of time. Nursing school was in my mind for a while. And then summer came and I relaxed.
September rolled around and so did what should have been the beginnings of my getting set to apply again. But it wasn't there. That yearning, that excitement, that desperation to be a midwifery student. I couldn't even find it in my thought's thoughts. I sat on this feeling and then after a few weeks I began digging deeper.
Here is what I realized about a two months ago:
At a time in my life when I was so ready and willing to be empowered as a woman, beautiful midwives came into my life.
Then at a time when I want so deeply to empower women in any way I can, midwifery comes to mind because that is largely what I associate the beginning of my empowerment with.
But if I can be honest with myself, and you lovely readers, there have been many times through my journey towards midwifery that I questioned my true ability to be a midwife.
Two months ago when I had no distractions of school course deadlines and an interview to get ready for, all I had were my deep thoughts and emotions. I had time to truly sit and think about what it MEANS to be a midwife - not just the fantasy midwife in my head.
And I will tell you that I DO hold midwives on a high platform - with roses around it and a shining light on them and maybe even halos - there I said it. I respect them SO much and am so thankful for them.
That does not mean that I should be a midwife. I am learning that now. The reality of a midwife is tough stuff and I feel that it takes a certain, amazing person to be able to do the job fully and completely. I don't think that is me. I don't think that I have the critical thinking skills to be a midwife. I don't. I don't think well on my feet at times and I am not entirely sure what I would do or how I would react in a life or death situation. I think some people are naturally born calm folks in do or die situations. I am not sure that I am one of them. And I don't think it's fair to wait until a serious birth to find out.
I don't think it's fair to my family as this stage in the game to be gone for long periods of time. Maybe it never will be or maybe one day it will be easier. I am not sure. But right now, in this moment, I don't know and I am not willing to not only put money, my time and time away from my family on the line for something I am just not sure about any more.
And that's when I started to really think about it all. Because suddenly I wasn't sure. And it wasn't that sort of uncertainty one experiences that passes quickly, it is one that has been with me for a while now - and if anything has gotten stronger.
I began thinking about what I love about midwifery and how I can use those things in a different career path. I began thinking about things that I loved and desired so much before having kids. There were things that I re-discovered about myself that I had buried so deep, in my desire to pursue midwifery. Things that deserved to be re examined and things that are making my heart sing again.
Making my heart sing. The thought of being a midwife once did that - a long, beautiful, drawn out song like at the end of the final song in an opera. It was loud, clear and beautiful. And then that song ended and I found myself in the reception area of the opera theatre, blinking under the bright lights, the sounds of the last song still ringing in my head. But now the song was dull and hard to hear. I strained for a while to hold onto that song, but it has slowly vanished.
My heart still sings for midwifery but not to BE a midwife. Will that change? I don't know. Do we ever fully KNOW anything? I don't know what next year will be bring. Or next week. Or tomorrow. But I DO know that as long as I keep listening to that song in my head and choose the path in front of me that makes sense to ME it will work as it should.
I am so filled with excitement for my fellow midwifery lovers and I am waiting with baited breath to hear how their application goes.
I, too, will be applying to school but it wont be to midwifery.
I will continue to strive towards an occupation that focuses on women's health as a whole. I wont settle until I feel like I am helping women as they need, in their circumstances. Does that mean midwifery in the future? Broken record again but I am not sure.
What I am sure of is that, as long as I keep listening to my gut and my instincts, it will all work out.