A MIDWIFERY PARTNERSHIP
The model of care at Foothills Midwifery includes many different team members, including you! You are the most important part of our partnership. Midwifery care emphasizes the importance of client-centered care and client-informed choices, you get to decide what's best for you and your family.
In addition to you as the primary team member, we have found that having a team of professionals offers more sustainable care and more services to meet the needs of our clients. Instead of a solo midwife practice, you have the opportunity of having a few birth midwives, which ensures that whoever ends up at your birth, will be someone you already know. Midwife Terah, Midwife Hannah and Midwife Heidi are the main birth midwives at Foothills Midwifery
Other team members include: Midwife Brooke, who is a wellness provider. She offers wellness care to women outside of pregnancy, which includes gynecological care, annual exams, laboratory testing, contraceptive care, and more. Ilya is our ultrasound technologist who comes on Saturday afternoons offering ultrasounds for pregnancy and non-pregnancy. We also have birth assistants and advanced students training to be midwives, you can read about everyone's bios below!
When I had my first daughter at 16 years old, I later learned how fortunate I was to be treated with respect and dignity, and to have had an empowering experience. Midwifery care changed my life. As a single, teen parent, I set off on a journey to support my daughter and I. I worked as a medical assistant while attending midwifery school and now I have attended somewhere around 1000+ births as a midwife. I feel so fortunate to have been a part of midwifery for the last 15 years and in healthcare for the last 20 years. I have gone on to have five children who were all born with midwives! I am also proud to identify as Latina and Diné (Navajo). In additionto catching babies, I am a professor at the Center for Indigenous Midwifery School and have degrees in Spanish/Latin American Studies and Psychology I have personally been impacted by how important midwifery work is and I am truly honored to walk beside you on this journey into parenthood.
Starting November' 23 Midwifery has been a part of my life since before I was born, thanks to a midwife who introduced my mother to midwifery and another homebirth midwife who supported her through pregnancy and postpartum. When labor came, I didn’t wait for the midwife to arrive and was “caught” by my dad instead - a fact I loved to share with any listening ear during my early childhood. Midwifery became a personal dream at the age of 8, and never died although many years passed between that time and my official midwifery journey. After witnessing my first birth in 2015 and actively pursuing observational midwifery experience, I started midwifery school in 2018. I graduated June 2023 after five years in midwifery school - the hardest and most rewarding years of my life so far! Sometimes during midwifery training when an occasional baby beat me (was born before I could arrive) I felt like they could have been laughing at me and that in some way it must only be fair, since I entered the world in the same way :) I’ve had the privilege of working with at least 13 midwives during training, have been a student and assistant at Foothills Midwifery for more than two years. I feel honored to be joining the team as a midwife! One of my favorite things about birth and birth work is that the spaces it brings us to make us face ourselves in a very vulnerable way. Birth and birth work brings us to a place where we have to look both inside and outside of ourselves and ultimately tap into Strength beyond ourselves. Strength that is freely offered anyone who seeks it. Though hard work, the results are beautiful! We were designed to do this. I do love babies and am an awe-filled witness and guardian of the incredible moments and space where they arrive, but whenever I am off call and can get away, I also love to recharge by quiet moments in nature, hiking, camping/backpacking, knitting baby hats and clothing, painting, songwriting, reading, journaling, and being with my family or friends. I am a fan of fall time and warm sweaters, Bernese Mountain Dogs (after growing up with them), the breathtaking beauty of Mount Rainier and the farmlands of eastern Washington that I still call “home”. I can’t wait to walk this path with you and celebrate the joy of the new life within you!
Brooke is our wellness provider. She provides health needs to clients beyond the 6-8 week postpartum period and to other community members who are looking for care for an array of healthcare needs. "The spark that ignited my passion for midwifery began 26 years ago sitting in a sacred women’s circle where a midwife shared the magic of assisting new life onto this planet. This was soon after my son was born and the midwife’s words of empowerment spoke to me. Although I did not have a challenging birth experience, it was not what I wanted and I did not feel empowered. I clearly knew, listening to the midwife that night, that I had found my vocation to support others during this great transition. I lived in Maryland at the time, where nurse-midwifery was much more prevalent than certified professional midwifery, and so I began my journey to become a nurse. In 1999, I became a RN and also became a single mom. I worked many years as a labor nurse, going to school part time, and finally graduated in 2011 with my Master’s Degree from Shenandoah University/Johns Hopkins University and became a Certified Nurse-Midwife. My training included both in and out of hospital birth. After graduation, I began a midwifery practice within a OB group in a rural part of MD which quickly grew to have 3 midwives and 25-30 births per month. It was very difficult to move on from my Maryland birthing community, but I was feeling the call to move west and to work with the First Peoples of the US. I was offered a position on the great Navajo Nation, where it has been a privilege to provide midwifery services for the last 6 years. I have attended over 1000 births in my 11 years, caring for both high and low risk clients. I am now heeding the call to the Pacific Northwest and am grateful for the opportunity to get back to my roots of out of hospital birth. I am honored to join the Foothills Midwifery group and support your family during your journey. " "Outside of my part time work at Foothills Midwifery, I am launching my Energy Healing Business called Journey with Brooke, offering spiritual and energetic support for all your reproductive needs, including conception, pregnancy, labor, birth, and beyond, as well as offering support to those experiencing transition in their lives. The work is offered in person or virtually. I am so appreciative of you perusing the site and feel free to take advantage of the FREE 30 min consultation."
At every birth, we bring two assistants, who are typically students actively enrolled in a midwifery program . Our students & assistants are professionally trained to offer some labor support, although their primary responsibility is to be a second set of hands for the midwife. Nearly all of the time, you will meet your birth assistant(s) before your birth.
“Hi, there! My name is Michaela Baldwin. I grew up in the metro east of St. Louis in southern Illinois, where my passion for midwifery was born. My journey to this work began during my own pregnancy and birth, when I experienced firsthand the value of hiring a community midwife. Living in rural Illinois, I experienced a gap in the maternity healthcare system. Finding a midwife was not an easy task: At the time, there were no legal community birth providers serving my area. Despite these challenges, I miraculously pieced together my birth team, and I experienced a life-changing amount of support in the midwifery model of care. During this transformational experience, I caught a glimpse of my future calling. I spent the next few months falling in love with motherhood with the strength of this new community behind me. I soon began training as a doula and was accepted into Midwives College of Utah. Since then, in addition to my clinical training, I have continued to work as a doula & birth photographer, attend workshops, and support the legislation efforts of Illinois Friends of Midwives. I am very passionate about improving health outcomes, increasing options for communities, fostering inclusive spaces, and addressing injustices in the healthcare system. I am now in my final phase of midwifery school, and I can’t wait to see what this opportunity in this beautiful community brings!“
Hello! My name is Leah and I am originally from Pensacola, Florida. I am in my fourth year at Mercy In Action College of Midwifery and am studying to become a CPM. The past 2 years I have worked with a home birth midwife in Mississippi and Alabama, and have just relocated to work here at Foothills Midwifery to finish my training. I am 29 years old and I am very passionate about supporting women throughout pregnancy, labor and birth, and postpartum. I look forward to this new season here with everyone at Foothills Midwifery
I first heard the call to midwifery 29 years ago, as a young mother. My fifth and sixth babies were born at home in the care of an amazing underground midwife in California in the early 90's. Living the experience of the Midwifery Model of Care changed my life and opened my heart and soul to the deep desire to serve women the way I had been served. Circumstance dictated I put that dream on hold while raising my children, but the fire was never extinguished. It lingered through the years and even informed my decision to work in Special Education for 13 years in Wyoming. My return to the midwifery path was kickstarted by the birth of my fifth grandchild in 2010. I was my daughter's doula and her baby was born at home, just as she was. I completed my doula training with DONA, and worked off and on as a doula for another seven years in Wyoming and Colorado before beginning midwifery school in 2017. Some of my fondest doula memories are of serving at the births of five of my now 11 grandchildren. My husband of 36 years and I moved to the Maple Valley area in January of 2018, and I finished midwifery school in May 2019. There's a Norwegian proverb that says, "The greatest joy is to become a mother; the second greatest is to be a midwife." I am overjoyed to be continuing my journey with Terah, in service to all of you as a part of the Foothills Midwifery community. Thank all of you for allowing me the privilege of learning from you, I look forward to sharing this sacred time together.
Starting November '23 I place the responsibility for sparking my interest in birth on my grandma, who, instead of babysitting me as planned, sent this wide-eyed three and a half year old along to her younger brother’s birth. From then on, I was fascinated by babies and birth, but it was years before midwifery appeared on my radar. Growing up in a naturally minded but also medical home in a rural part of Canada, I got lots of experience responding to medical emergencies as well as learning how to foster good health through simple, natural methods. After taking a step back from pre-nursing to reevaluate my chosen profession, I discovered midwifery. As I learned about the principles by which midwives practice, I knew instinctively that this was exactly what I had been looking for — client-centered continuity of care with emphasis on safeguarding the natural, healthy body processes. When the opportunity presented me to job shadow a midwife, I was overjoyed to accept, and I’ve been hooked ever since. I started training with Mercy In Action College of Midwifery in 2019, and I am excited to be joining the Foothills Midwifery team as a learner, a witness, and a guardian of the miracle of birth.
"The Midwives Model of Care is based on the fact that pregnancy and birth are normal life processes.
The Midwives Model of Care includes:
Monitoring the physical, psychological, and social well-being of the mother throughout the childbearing cycle
Providing the mother with individualized education, counseling, and prenatal care, continuous hands-on assistance during labor and delivery, and postpartum support
Minimizing technological interventions
Identifying and referring women who require obstetrical attention
The application of this woman-centered model of care has been proven to reduce the incidence of birth injury, trauma, and cesarean section."
MIDWIVES MODEL OF CARE
Families choose out-of-hospital birth for a wide variety of reasons. Among those reasons include: safety, the desire for decreased intervention, and to have more control of their birth.
When women and their babies are screened well and “low-risk” is established, they are candidates for midwifery care. Midwives spend a tremendous amount of time with their clients, increasing safety for their client and their baby with thorough screening as well as developing a relationship that leads to a compatible and cohesive team for a woman’s birth.
MIDWIVES ASSOCIATION OF WASHINGTON STATE
The Midwives Association of Washington State has set up guidelines for Licensed Midwives of Washington to reference. I agree with these standards and under nearly all circumstances, will adhere to their guidelines. I also support The Midwives Association of Washington State through my annual membership.
This wonderful article was written by an Australian MD. "Western, medicalized, high tech maternity care under obstetric control usually dehumanizes, often leads to unnecessary, costly, dangerous, invasive obstetric interventions and should never be exported to developing countries. Midwives and planned out-of-hospital births are perfectly safe for low-risk births."