Midwifery is her lifery
By Don Rush
I have a great job.
I find most people interesting. I mean, we all have our stories, our pasts, our dreams and everything when mixed together makes us uniquely interesting. And, then there are some folks I find intriguing.
One such person is Clarkston’s Wendy Pinter, 41. Pinter, mom to three, United States Navy Reservist is an entrepreneur. I met her some months ago when she wandered into our Thursday morning, small business networking group, the Clarkston Coffee Club (www.ClarkstonCoffeeClub.com).
Bespectacled with dark eyes and hair, she politely introduced herself and told us her business. She’s a midwife. Of course the first thing that lit up inside my head was the quote from actress Butterfly McQueen, as Mammy in the classic movie, Gone With the Wind. I almost said aloud, “Lawdy, Miss Scarlett, I don’t know nothin’ ‘bout birthin’ no babies!”
Be proud of me, I held my tongue, shook her hand and merely said, “Wow. Interesting. I have never met a midwife before. Hmm. Interesting.”
Her business is called Nine Short Months (www.NineShortMonths.com) with offices in Clarkston, Royal Oak and Flint, and recently I was able to sit down and talk with her one-on-one.
After the opening salvo of questions (name, age, rank, serial number type questions) I wanted to know how and why does anybody become a midwife in Clarkston, Michigan, in the good ol’ U.S. of A in the year of our lord 2016?
She said, without really knowing it, she maybe always wanted to be a part of the birthing process, having grown up on a farm. When her family’s horses would be ready to have babies, she would sleep in the barn. As she grew to womanhood, however, medical school wasn’t in her plans. She mostly worked at the family business — a motorcycle shop.
It wasn’t until much later in life, whilst laying around on the hospital bed, way pregnant with her second child (who is now 18), late at night, with no one around, she pretty much gave birth herself, with the help of whomever was on staff at the time that the idea started to form. “If I was a midwife, what could I do better?”
By the time of her third child (now 14) she was training to be a midwife.
“No way did I want to go back to the hospital.”
Since midwifery became her lifery (sorry, I was trying to find a rhyme) she has attended the births of over 1,000 new lives!
And, from her endeavors she has become “the Expert of Normal.” What that means is birthin’ babies is natural and normal. They will come when they come and moms will know when that time is.
Obviously, there can be complications and obviously having a midwife is not for every pregnancy. When parents are interviewing her, she also is interviewing them. She does not accept everyone into her practice. “I’m not out to prove anything or make any kind of statement. I only take on simple cases. If there’s a history of health complications, I won’t take them on.”
She finds her life rewarding. She offers care that is “respectful, compassionate” and centered around a woman’s needs. She is passionate about empowering women, educating them about their bodies and the birthing process.
“They should know how it works. I’ve found it changes not only her life, but the entire family’s. The mothers become more confident and they start to have a voice in the other parts of their lives, too. Birth is simple and the less complicated you make it, the better off the process is; the healthier it will be.”
So, want to know a random baby fact? Pinter has found October to be her busiest birthing month, followed closely by March and May. (If you are like me, you have already started counting backwards nine months.)
What else makes Pinter “intriguing?” When she was 39 years old, four day before age limitations would have kept her out of the service, she joined the Navy reserves.
“I wanted to travel without it costing me a lot of money.”
Hmm. Interesting, I say, interesting. I am smiling now. I have a great job. I am so grateful working for the newspaper because it has allowed me to meet so many wonderfully unique people. Thanks for talking with me Wendy, hope to see you at the Coffee Club soon.
Don desires your e-mails. Send them to Don@ShermanPublications.org