Today I hit the 23 week mark. I had my first proper appointment with a midwife. I had one at 9 weeks called a 'booking in' appointment. This is just where they basically take lots of info about you, weigh you, take bloods and urine samples and fill in some paperwork for you to take away.
Since this appointment, I havent seen anyone about my pregnancy. Although I have been to the docs quite a few times for sicknotes and had 3 hospital stays, this has all been for hyperemesis treatment and not general pregnancy advice and monitoring, so I was looking forward to finally get to speak to someone about concerns I have and to get some advice on some things. With this being my first pregnancy I'm kind of clueless about a lot of it apart from what I read online.
I turned up for my appointment at 1pm and was advised my midwife was running late, she wasnt even in the building yet. At 1:25 someone finally arrived. I overheard them talking with the receptionist. Turns out my midwife is on holiday and the stand-in was called to an unexpected home birth so this was another stand-in. Can't be helped I suppose, but I was hoping she wouldnt try to rush me as there were already 2 other girls waiting who arrived after me.
I went in and sat down. There was a midwife and a health advisor. They asked me how far along I was. The health advisor came over with a urine dipstick thingy and said "URINE!" really loudly to me. Now I havent had an appointment before so no-one ever told me I had to bring a sample with me. Thankfully I had one anyway as I'm one of those 'Just in case' people, but the manner in which she asked for it left a lot to be desired. So that was tested and all was fine.
She then asked me to lie on the couch. She listened to the heartbeat while the midwife shouted some blood results from the bloods that were taken 3 and a half months ago at my booing in appointment. No explanation as to what the results meant, I dont know how she could even know I heard them all through the curtain. Thankfully I'm quite well read about things Im having done so I knew what the tests meant, but I would imagine an awful lot of women wouldnt. An explanation would have been nice anyway.
They then stuck some printouts of my results into my pregnancy file and took my blood pressure which they wrote on the paperwork. I dont think Ive ever felt so rushed in my life. They also faffed about with my file as Im having my baby at Airedale Hospital and not at Bradford Royal Infirmary and no sod seems to know how to fill out the Airedale Hospital paperwork. It happened on my first appointment too. Lots of head scratching and exclamations of "Whats this then?"... doesnt fill you with confidence.
I attempted to talk about the pain Id been having and was told I would need to speak to my midwife if it was still a problem in 4 weeks time!! I asked if I could see a doctor about it instead and was told I was under the care of my midwife now and he would probably refer me back to her. She said it was a common complaint in pregnancy and I should rest and take painkillers!!! I know barely being able to move or walk at night is not a common compaint in pregnancy but I was feeling so nauseous by this stage I didnt see the point in arguing with someone who was trying to push me out the door as quick as possible. In fact the health advisor never sat down through the entire appointment, just hovered over me, encouraging me to leave.
I quickly asked about classes as I need to get booked onto some that are offered to prepare you for the birth and childcare. THey of course had no information or paperwork and told me I should call Airedale Hospital...funny thing was the hospital had told me I needed to speak to my midwife about it.
They gave me a printout of an drop in centre I could attend between appointments if I wanted to talk to a midwife although they stressed it wasnt for any kind of treatment, referrals or medications. I later noticedon looking at the printout it was more for advice for mums on feeding and childcare and general common sense diet advice. On my notes they'd written, 'Discussed Drop In Centres'. Yup a very detailed 5 second discussion and a printout.
So the appointment was a complete waste of time. I thought I would have a good conversation, get a referral for the SPD, get some tips with managing the pain. I thought they would start measuring my belly to see if its growing as it should be, apparently they should be doing this and charting it by now. I should be getting weighed to make sure Im putting on an appropriate amount of weight. To be 6 months pregnant before I get any proper form of pre-natal care to me is ridiculous.
What was the experience of other women who have had children with midwives visits? Is this normal?