Mary Callender, CPM, LM
I have been a birth worker in the Richmond area since 1997. My journey to becoming a midwife (CPM) began with the birth of my son by cesarean, because he was in a breech position. I later had a natural birth and VBAC with my daughter. I started out as a birth doula in 1997 and from there I became a postpartum doula and monitrice.
I began my journey to becoming a home birth midwife in 2006 when I realized the absurdity of the number of unnecessary c-sections that were being performed in the area and the limits of my scope of practice as a doula. I graduated from National Midwifery Institute and received my certified professional midwife credential in 2013. I have attended over 250 births with over 80 being in an out of hospital setting such as at home or in a birth center. I have apprenticed with 7 different midwives.
Each birth teaches me something different as no woman, no pregnancy, no birth, and no baby are the same-even when the client is a repeat client. There is so much to learn about the birth process and I emphasize with my clients the importance of trusting their body’s ability to give birth.. VBAC (vaginal birth after a cesarean) is near and dear to my heart. In my work as the leader of ICAN of Richmond and the River City VBAC Support group, I have learned that there are many reasons that a doctor decides to do a cesarean. My goal is to help the women who have had a cesarean to process her experience emotionally and prepare herself through education and support for a different outcome with her next child.