Day 4: 256 Hours Remaining

So, for some reason I thought right now would be a great time to start training to do a Tough Mudder (http://toughmudder.com/) with a past client, named Stacy, who is a trainer. If you aren’t aware of Tough Mudder, it’s an obstacle course/mud run that raises funds to support the Wounded Warrior Project (http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/). It’s just on that list of “things I would do if I weren’t on call to catch babies all the dang time.” And, well, I’m not on call. I could ACTUALLY leave my cell phone somewhere and not think about it for the first time in ten years. I could get on a boat and sail far away or jump on a train and visit long lost family.

Oh, except I’m on probation and am restricted from leaving Los Angeles and Orange County. Right.

What did I do to deserve such love?

Anyway… back to Tough Mudder. Stacy and her husband are both built of steel. I kid you not. They can lift small buildings with their pinkies. And they’ve taken it upon themselves to make sure I don’t die running in the mud. I’m flattered.

But on Day Four of my community service sentence for saving a baby’s life, I am finding that the soreness is really setting in. So much so that when I sit on the toilet before I head out for the shelter I literally have to pull myself up using the walls. Which is really lady-like. But so were 55 deep squats, thank you very much.

And I’m looking forward to rolling toilet paper because I can rest. Unfortunately, Jeremy has other plans for me. To my shock, I’m put on litter pickup duty instead.

Jeremy hands me a broom, a dust pan and a flash light. “Sweep the entire courtyard and then go around in all the planters and pick up any trash and cigarette butts. When you done here, you done. You can go sit in the clubhouse til mornin duties.”

I’d never seen so many cigarette butts in planters in all my life. And each one demanded another squat. By the time I finished, my eyes were watering and I was feeling dizzy from the pain.

The clubhouse had become heaven on skid row.

Robert had been replaced by a new community service worker. Everyone had less hours than I did, apparently. The new guy introduced himself as Chris, doing 40 hours for a DUI. And like Robert, he gawked at my hours and wanted to know what I did. I must have beat someone up, of course.

“I delivered a baby.” No sense saying that I caught the baby. Nobody outside of homebirth really cares if you say “delivered” or “caught.” Actually “caught” makes them think someone threw the baby to start with. I was no longer in the mood to explain midwifery to some non-breeder.

“Wait a minute. What’s your name?” He asked, looking at me through hipster glasses.

“Katie McCall.” I’m not going to lie, that made me a little uneasy.

“No shit? I think I read about you on Facebook. My friend wants to be a midwife and she posted a news story about your case.”

“Serious? What’s her name?”

“Rebecca Day.”

I sat in silence for a moment, in awe of how the world can be such a small place. I had cared for Rebecca during her pregnancy with twins and I told Chris so. He likewise expressed his amazement. A couple hours later he became my 1,899th friend on Facebook. That’s how things work in the digital age. Wonder if we’ll swap Christmas cards.

My pain and exhaustion eventually gave way and I pulled my hoody jacket tight around me and tucked myself into a fetal position on the cold concrete floor because it was more comfortable than the 99 cent store stackable chairs that were the only other option.

“Wow,” said Chris. “You really are built for prison, huh?”

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About supportmidwifekatiemccall

Katie McCall was born at Pomona Valley Hospital in Southern California by scheduled c-section as a frank breech due to the current medical system insistence that breeches should always be delivered that way. Katie's father's family was filled with teachers, her mother's family was filled with healers. It is no surprise then, that she went on to have her own two children and spend her adult life involved in a combination of teaching and healing through midwifery, childbirth education, doula work and serving families in Southern California. Katie attended USC for her general education and then went on to study with the American Academy of Husband Coached Childbirth to become a certified childbirth educator. Shortly thereafter, she certified as a birth doula (labor assistant) with the Association of Labor Assistants and Childbirth Educators. Katie was also mentored through a pregnancy and birth support business called The Birth Connection in Glendale, CA, which Katie later purchased and expanded to include a 1500 square foot education facility, retail store and birthing center. She enrolled in midwifery school and apprenticed with the midwives who ran the birth center as well as with midwives who attended homebirths. She sold her business to pursue her midwifery education full time in 2006 and passed her midwifery (NARM) exam to become a Certified Professional Midwife in 2008. She went on to gain her Midwifery License from the State of CA Medical Board in 2010. Katie has received supplementary education in lactation to become a lactation educator, vaginal birth after cesarean support, support of sexual abuse survivors, aromatherapy and is neonatal and CPR certified. She assisted over 500 couples through childbirth education and attended over 550 births as of 2011. As a Southern California native, she has a wide range of experience, serving mothers from diverse backgrounds. She believes her job is one of empowering women to develop their own trust and connection with their bodies and their babies during their own unique journey into motherhood. If she has learned anything through her experience with birth, it is that every birth is as different as the women who are laboring. On August 17th, 2011 Katharine “Katie” McCall, a licensed midwife, was convicted of practicing medicine with out a license for a 2007 birth she assisted as a student. The charge arose from a home birth where Katie's supervising midwife could not arrive because she was at another birth. Instead of leaving the family to birth unassisted, Katie stayed. She recommended that the family transfer to the hospital and the family refused. They were aware that she was only a student midwife and that she was unable to secure an overseeing mid View all posts by supportmidwifekatiemccall

3 responses to “Day 4: 256 Hours Remaining

  • Shannon

    Katie I am in awe. I am filled with righteous anger and sorrow for what you are being put through. And yet, while I sit here with my blood boiling and tears flowing, you make me smile. Sometimes chuckle a little. I hope and pray your strong character doesn’t waver as this time drags on. You’re less than an hour away from me. I wish I knew you.

  • Heather

    I wouldnt say you were built for prison…but you, my friend are definitely made of tougher stuff than 99.9% of the population. And all those 36 hour doula hospital births prolly didn’t soften u none…at least on the outside.

  • Shannon Santamaria

    And now I do. 😉 I hope you enjoyed your evening at the premier. Hugs

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