Nikki Smith 
Member since Nov 27, 2013


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Re: “Rally for Charleston Birth Place today at 4:30

Id like to share some of my story in regards to this situation. Please be absolutely clear Im not whining and Im not attacking. Im sharing something that is personal and now could be very scary for me since Ive been planning for months and now all my plans were threatened to chnage with one letter.
First, let me explain where my mind is at currently. Im 37 1\2 weeks along. Im not wealthy by any means. Ive done a lot of reading and watching videos. Ive made myself aware of my situation and my birthing options. I do not have a Doula to assist me but I do have my husband and my family support (which live in Michigan so Im crossing my fingers if my paretns will even make it for the birth).
I understand that the hosptial has its purpose and place for birthing. But for me Ive never felt right about being admitted there without a medical need. When I first became pregnant, Iknew that there were other options but i didnt know what they were in our area besides the hospital or an at home birth. I wasnt comfortable with a home birth only because there was so much I needed to learn about my body and the baby and the brith and I dont have any help here in SC to learn about how to prepare. I feel that home births are amazing and safe if well prepared and supported by the people around the mother and child. Then I learned about birthing centers and midwives. This always became my favorite option (at least for this first birthing experience). Through a friend of a friend I found CBP. Since Ive been working with them and continueing my preparation Ive felt very much at ease that Im doing the right thing for myself and my child.
Now DHEC has been going back and forth with not only CBP but all the other birth centers in SC. Which I wish was comforting to me that Im not the only very soon to be mother freaking out but its not. This should never happen because the last thing we want is our midwives and mothers doing is stressing, losing sleep, and dealing with a range of emotions that include frustration, anxiety, anger, etc. We all want to be able to focus on the most important part of bringing in a new child to this world. We also want to feel safe and secure about our decisions. I know that the midwives and CBP are there for me and all other mothers, which I LOVE them for. I dont know if anyone else has talked to there insurance company but they could potentially make this situation even that much more complicated. They also dont seem to have any power to the subject. Theyll just respond based on how the situation unfolds. Which Im not going to get into just because it stresses me out and I have faith in Lesley and the CBP lawyers and all the midwives and supporters of womens choice.
What I feel we do need to remember and keep focus on. The first step is to make sure that DHEC agrees that the SC birth centers are in compliance (my personal focus is CBP). This step is of course first because there are a lot of soon to be mothers, including myself, who are relying on this brith center (and other birth centers) and there midwives. Next step is to make sure that this can never happen again. To do that we have to get SC DHEC to align there standards with the Commission of Acredidation of Birth Centers (CABC) and American Association of Birth Centers (AABC). As I understand it the CABC is the national acredidation that which AABC supports (which is a national organization).
All the while we need to stand as one strong unit and voice. This is how we are the most powerful. Plus there are several midwives, Lesley at the top of the ones I know of, that need our strength. They are basically running on E at this point fighting on the very front lines of this issue for everyone else. I know that we are all doing our parts but we cant forget what they are doing (which by no means am I saying that we are forgeting them Im just reiterating the point and recognizing the work they have been doing not only recently but for the past few months).
I understand that this entire personal statement may be redundent since its basically what weve been talking about but I really wanted to share part of my story and how I feel. I also wanted to make it clear that I dont feel any one is discrediting home births. The only reason that even came up, I feel, is becauase some mothers are worried that if the option to give birth at the birth center is taken away mothers who are almost due and who are very very strongly against the hospital will stay home to give birth without the proper support or preperation. Home births are amazing and safe when prepared and supported but unneccassary risk would be taken if this is done without the proper preparation and support. I also wanted to be very clear what I feel our goals are as a whole. And that I am very thankful for the support the community has given us. We have to stay strong as a group and not lose focus for the long term goal. Remember step one is just to make sure all operatins for birth centers in SC stay open. Step 2 is to make sure this doesnt happen ever again by alighing with the national standards (CABC).
Thank you for listenting to my viewpoint and my story. I dont think that this is a game changing statement but its my statement and I felt compelled to share.

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Posted by Nikki Smith on November 27, 2013 at 2:38 PM
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