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Book Title: Baby Catcher: Chronicles of a Modern Midwife|
The author of the book: Peggy Vincent
ISBN 13: 9780743219341
Date of issue: April 15th 2003
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 4.23 MB
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Reader ratings: 3.2
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An inspiring collection of birth stories by a charming midwife.
Each time she knelt to “catch” another wriggling baby—nearly three thousand times during her remarkable career—California midwife Peggy Vincent paid homage to the moment when pain bows to joy and the world makes way for one more. With every birth, she encounters another woman-turned-goddess: Catherine rides out her labor in a car careening down a mountain road. Sofia spends hers trying to keep her hyper doctor-father from burning down the house. Susannah gives birth so quietly that neither husband nor midwife notice until there's a baby in the room.
More than a collection of birth stories, however, Baby Catcher is a provocative account of the difficulties that midwives face in the United States. With vivid portraits of courage, perseverance, and love, this is an impassioned call to rethink technological hospital births in favor of more individualized and profound experiences in which mothers and fathers take center stage in the timeless drama of birth.
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Read information about the authorSince observing the birth of a baby for the first time when I was a 19yo nursing student in the mid-Sixties at Duke University, childbirth has been my primary focus.
During the good old hippie years, my husband and I took an extended trip to Europe, but upon our return, I began working as an obstetrical nurse at a prominent hospital in Berkeley, California, where my first 2 children were born.
In 1978, I established the Alternative Birth Center in that hospital and then went to midwifery school, graduating in December 1980.
Unable to obtain hospital privileges due to dig-in-the-heels obstruction from obstetricians to the mere idea of a midwife in their midst, I attended only home births for the next 3 year. Finally, after I jumped through countless hoops, the walls of resistance crumbled and I was granted privileges. At last I could offer clients a midwife-attended birth in the place of their choosing.
Women can take a long time to give birth, and while waiting through those countless hours, I told birth stories. Family, friends, nurses, other midwives all nagged me to write a book." The most persistent was my college roommate, a copy editor, who offered to edit it for "no payment other than California Meyer lemons for life."
So I wrote Baby Catcher: Chronicles of a Modern Midwife (Scribner, 2002), and it succeeded beyond my wildest hopes and dreams. Not only did it open women to options other than those offered by the status quo, but it also caused a career change in many women who, after reading the book, chose to become doulas or midwives themselves.
I was 42 and a busy midwife with a very big practice when I gave birth to my 3rd child. He was born at home surrounded by what felt like a cast of thousands. Present were my 2 older children, my husband, the 2 youngest children of my primary midwife, 2 other midwives, 3 of my hospital nurse friends, my parents, our pregnant au pair, a photographer, a few stray husbands, I think maybe a neighbor...there might have been more. Afterwards, we had quite a party, and I made sure someone saved me a piece of the hazelnut torte.
My career would not have been possible without the support of my husband, Roger, and those three children of ours: Colin, Jill, and Skylar. They endured (with minimal complaint and eye-rolling) my absence on far too many Christmas mornings and other family events.
Years passed with fans and friends begging for "another book." I finally wrote Midwife: A Calling (Ant Press 2015), the first of a projected 3-book series.
I'm officially retired, but I still put in a cameo appearance now and then.
Attending births is an addiction: once you've shared the raw emotion of labor with a woman, the transcendent joy of birth, and the feel of a warm, wet newborn in your hands, it's hard to kick the habit.
I hope I never do.
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