Choosing Center for Birth
Center for Birth is a little unique among birth centers in Seattle. We have our resident midwifery practice, Center for Birth Midwives, consisting of Wendy Gordon and Tina Tsiakalis, and we also extend privileges to many of the midwives in the metro-Seattle area. Center for Birth is here for you, and you have the freedom to see the midwifery group of your choice, and have your birth center birth.
1. Choose Your Midwife
You have the freedom to choose any one of the many midwives with privileges at Center for Birth. You can look for midwife groups arranged by geographic location on the Midwives Association of Washington State website .
Your midwife/ives will provide prenatal care for you at their office, and will let you know how and when to contact them in labor. When it's time, they will meet you at Center for Birth.
Your midwife will be with you throughout your labor and and birth at the birth center.
2. Register at Center for Birth
Attend a birth center orientation/tour to get familiar with the location, see the birth suites (choose your favorite!), and pick up a registration packet if downloading one from the web site is not convenient for you.
Submit your registration as early as possible in your pregnancy. That gives our insurance specialist enough time to check on your coverage if desired.
3. Come to the Birth Center
For families experiencing their first birth, or their first unmedicated birth, preparing with a childbirth preparation course specifically tailored to birth center birth can be very helpful.
Labor is unique to everyone. For most people, there is a period of early labor preceding what is termed "active" labor. Having a doula to assist through that transition from early to active labor is a great idea.
When you think you are in active labor you will communicate directly with your midwife to make a plan for going to the birth center when it's time.
Throughout your labor, you and your baby will be monitored following birth center guidelines. Midwives are the experts on normal labor and birth, which means they are also expert at identifying anything that is beginning to fall outside the realm of normal and can take the necessary actions to keep you and your baby well.
Following the birth, your midwife will help you and your baby get started with breastfeeding if you need it, and will do a complete newborn exam before you go home. You can expect to spend about 3 or 4 hours at the birth center following the birth of your baby. You and your baby, having had a normal birth uncomplicated with drugs or procedures that necessitate extra monitoring, will be ready. Rest assured, you will not be discharged until your midwife team determines you and your newborn are healthy and ready to go home.
Newborns are alert for a couple of hours after birth, and after that they enjoy a long nap to recoup from all the work they did to help you birth. Discharging you from the birth center soon after giving birth allows the new family to take advantage of this period of rest and get some sleep before beginning the next phase of caring for a newborn!