To make a long story short my husband and I relocated from Chicagoland to West Des Moines, IA just three weeks ago.  Currently I am using a midwife practice through one of the hospitals in the area. 

I am 30 weeks pregnant and really want a homebirth.  There are no birthing centers in the area and I am not having any luck finding a midwife that will even return my phone calls or respond to my e-mails.  I am beginning to think that maybe it is just too late in the game to switch and go for a homebirth. 

I'm not sure what else to do at this point.  Has anyone ever switched so late?  When I first started out with this pregnancy I was with an RE, moved onto an OB and with the move to Iowa I switched to the midwife practice that is affiliated with the hospital  (whom I've seen once so far).  I don't have any issues with the midwives that we are currently with I just really wanted to birth at home. 

Any suggestions or from experience do you think its time to throw in the towel and start rationalizing having a hospital birth? 


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Replies to This Discussion

Why don't you contact the ICAN group in your area? or LaLeche League? I'll bet there are some ladies there who would know who you could talk to! If they refer you it might be easier to get your phone and e-mails answered too! Wouldn't hurt to try!
I switched from an OB to a homebirth midwife about that late with my second, but I had been researching, and I'm in Los Angeles so I'm not sure I'm much help.

I agree with the previous poster regarding contacting groups that might be able to refer you. That is a bummer you are having such a hard time finding someone.

Good luck!
I'm in Iowa City, but I checked out the midwives a few months ago in Des Moines. I got a quick response by email from Dana Erikson at None of the CPMs I talked to do would do home VBAC, but if your not in that situation I hope you'll find someone. The DEMs seem much more likely to take people on late check out I didn't have any luck with their email request for help, but maybe you will. Otherwise (you'll probably want one anyway if you have to go to the hospital), I would try to find a Doula you like, they usually have some midwife names that will be harder to find on the web. Good luck in your search!
It's never too late to switch in my opinion. Keep looking! You could also possibly find a midwife through a doula. I would check out some of the doula services in the area.
Thank you for the replies. My Bradley Method instructor is used to be a Midwife but now is a postpartum doula. It pretty much sounds like there are just a few in the area that do homebirths or out of hospital births. There are however tons of doulas.

@Cynthia - I literally just got a reply from Dana a whole five minutes ago so I am praying that maybe it will work out. Of course I get a reply when I'm near my wits end of searching but I am really starting to feel a little more hopeful about it. If it does not work out then I will try the as its the first time I've heard of it! It is at least one more avenue to try! Thank you!
I did want to suggest a traveling midwife if you can't find one in your area. Sherri Holley is one. If you contact ICAN, someone is bound to have her contact information.
I was in the same situation last year and thought I was going to have to settle for a hospital birth with a certified midwife. However, I found a home birth midwife through my Bradley class instructor. I contacted the home birth midwife when I was 30 weeks and made the full switch at 36 weeks. Baby girl was born at 41w+1d at home. It was a quick transition, but totally worth it.

Perhaps you could contact birthing instructors in your area and ask if any of them know of any home birth midwives they could refer you to? [Edit: I just read the other responses and saw you have already talked to your Bradley instructor and possibly have a midwife - yay!] If you have been attending a church, you could also ask some of the ladies at the church if they know anyone who had a home birth (so you can talk to her and see if she liked her midwife) and/or anyone in the church who happens to be a midwife. Heck, you could call around to local churches and ask the same question (bold, but may pay off).

I hope you can find a home birth midwife! But, even if you can't, with some planning and work with the hospital midwife, it is still possible to have a natural, pleasant birth in the hospital. I enjoyed reading the book, "Homebirth in the Hospital", which was written by an OB who delivered one of her own babies at The Farm and wanted to give women as much of an at-home experience as possible at the hospital.

I didn't even start considering a homebirth until 36 weeks when my doctor threw up so many roadblocks to VBAC that I just couldn't stand it anymore!

Find a local ICAN chapter and find out if there are traveling midwives or underground midwives who will talk to you.

I found a midwife who I was able to click with quickly. Since I went to almost 42 weeks, we had a few weeks for checkups and to get to know each other. It was totally worth it!!!!


I WILL be getting my homebirth! I was declined by one of the midwives in the area that was not comfortable taking me on so late in the pregnancy. I didn't discourage though. Today I met with another midwife recommended by my Bradley instructor. She is amazing. She had no problem taking me on at 31 weeks. She's even taken somebody at 37 weeks before. My hubby couldn't be there since he had to work but he is completely on board. I plan on calling her tomorrow to confirm with her but she said today she felt that I would be a good fit for their practice. (She works with another midwife - so there are 2 at the birth - one for me and one for the baby). I am very excited. I can't even put it into words but a huge weight was lifted today. I'm really glad I listened to everybody who told me not to give up and to keep looking.
Congratulations! I'm so excited for you! Well wishes for your birth!
I am so happy for you!!! Please let us know how it goes.
Also just a caution to keep a flexible opinion about it in case anything weird crops up. Are you going to continue shadow care or go strictly midwife care?

Can't wait to hear your story!!




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