I feel like I had the best care possible during my pregnancy. Sybille Andersen is extremely caring, professional, and full of information. At the same time she makes you feel very empowered and capable of making your own choices. My husband and I knew that we wanted a home birth as soon as we found out that we were expecting. At the time there was not a homebirth option on Martha’s Vineyard. After calling a Boston based midwife that would only be willing to work with us if we moved off island, I felt desperate and discouraged. Having a baby off island in somebody else’s space would be better than the hospital, but nothing like my own home. I called Sybille on the neighboring island of Nantucket, and she was willing to meet with us. It worked out that we would be on Nantucket for a mini honeymoon in September, and that was also our first prenatal appointment. When I called Sybille from the Martha’s Vineyard airport to firm up our meeting the following day she asked when our flight was getting in. I thought she was just curious, but there she was at the airport on Nantucket to pick us up so that we didn’t have to pay cab fare into town. That was just the first of many times that she went out of her way to accommodate us.
We took turns island hoping for my early prenatal care. Sybille wound up having to spend a lot more time with me because of plane and ferry schedule gaps, but she didn’t seem to mind too much. After our prenatal appointments we went for long dog walks on the beaches of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket and got to know one another. I feel that I not only met an amazing midwife, but also a life long friend and mentor. I am a doula and I hope to someday be a midwife too. Sybille is totally willing to share her experiences and her path towards this challenging career. I really admire all that she has done in her life and feel that she is right in her element when it comes to childbirth and midwifery. It is so great to be around her positive energy and wisdom.
Not only did Sybille provide thorough prenatal care, but she also gave us four classes on childbirth and newborn care at no extra cost. She spent many extra hours with us making sure that all of our questions were answered. I knew a good amount about pregnancy from my work as a doula, but I still felt that I wanted my husband to have some child birth education. During our appointments with Sybille I always felt so comfortable and happy to be in my home or hers. She is able to do all the necessary check up in a non clinical setting. It makes being pregnant feel healthy and happy, and not like an illness that needs to be controlled.
We were all a little anxious about my going into labor and the logistics of how and when Sybille would get over from Nantucket. I started to have minor contractions around 3:30 am on March 22, 2006. Sybille just happened to be coming later that morning for a prenatal appointment. I called her to let her know of the possibility. She said that she would bring some over night clothes just in case. My husband and I felt excited, but we kept our cool. Sybille arrived and we had our appointment. I was in early labor, but we all sort of down played it, not knowing how long it would be or when it would progress. Some of the best advice from Sybille was that we should go about the day instead of sitting around and waiting. We all went for a great hike and I stopped every so often to rock through a contraction. My Husband and I went grocery shopping and out to lunch. We headed home when my contractions got more intense in the afternoon. During my labor Sybille took great care to check on us, and take the babies heart tones, but she left my husband and me alone. We were able to have as much private time together as we desired. Sybille’s presence allowed me to safely and confidently go through labor. After one exam in the late afternoon I was two centimeters. Upon the second exam, just after midnight on the 23rd I was fully dilated and ready to push. I really appreciated that Sybille didn’t have to examine me every hour. If I wasn’t ready I didn’t really want to know.
Sybille and my husband prepared a blow up kiddy pool in the late evening while my two girlfriends helped me relax between contractions. I got into the warm wonderful tub and my daughter was born 18 minutes later. Afterwards my husband and I and our new beautiful bright eyed baby Clara Ann all got in bed together. We were able to spend time all together for the first time, while Sybille and my girlfriends cleaned up the house. Sybille really took good care of me and mothered me when I became a new mom.