Kim Osterholzer, a midwife who's caught over 500 babies since 1993, ushers readers behind the doors of Amish homes as she recounts her lively, entertaining, and life-changing adventures learning the heart and art and craft of midwifery. In A Midwife in Amish Country, Kim chronicles the escapades of her nine-year apprenticeship grappling with the nuance and idiosyncrasies of homebirth as she tagged along after the woman who helped her birth her own babies at home. With drama and insight, she recounts the beauty and painstaking effort of those early years spent catching babies next to crackling woodstoves, by oil lamp and lantern light, and in farmhouses powered by windmills for running water and sporting outhouses for the unmentionables. She found herself catching babies born into leaky wading pools and through howling snow storms: huge babies, tiny babies, breech babies, and twin babies. Some births kept her from home for days on end, others she missed by heart-pounding seconds, yet every birth enthralled her, whether halting hemorrhages, sharing breath with tiny lungs, or bouncing through wild rides in ambulances. Too many times to count, Kim stumbled home feeling overwhelmed and inadequate, yet as she strained against her misgivings, self-doubts, and seemingly insurmountable challenges, those intimate, sacred moments transformed her as time after time she rocked back upon her heels to soak in the spellbinding magic of hearty cries filling the air–the cries of brand-new lives with newly expanding lungs, of hardy men with overflowing hearts, of life-bearing women with the reward of their labors filling their arms–a harmony of cries that mingled with Kim's own and that, together, rose heavenward from rumpled beds speckled and splattered with the sweat, tears, and blood of those births. The very beds of those conceptions became sacred spaces awash with love and joy and gratitude. She persevered, and her experiences became profoundly empowering as she unearthed the foundation and cornerstone of true midwifery–how to use her heart as well as her hands to serve, and to serve in the simplest of womanly ways---stroking, smoothing, wiping, tidying, nourishing, comforting, hearing, encouraging, validating, and witnessing. Slowly, steadily, Kim learned to play her part as midwife to the Amish–her part in a symphony of inimitable women–a single, piping strain among the melodies of those skilled, focused, strong, and harmonious–women unflagging in their passion to welcome new lives earth-side effectively and gently. And at last, tried and tested, Kim took her rightful place among them.
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About the Author
The list of Regnery authors reads like a "who's who" of conservative though, action, and history.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A Midwife in Amish Country: Celebrating God's Gift of Life based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Looking forward to more books from Ms. Osterholzer.
I'm sad I've finished reading this gorgeous book. I want more!!! :D Thank you so much, Kim Woodard Osterholzer, for opening your life to us. Just reading your book has helped soothe some of my own lingering stings from life and made me feel more a part of a special fellowship. Your book is a blessing. I guess I will go read it again!
I couldn’t put down a Midwife in Amish Country by Kim Woodard Osterholzer. This book was more than just a book about a wonderful woman and her journey into midwifery. This book was a journey about a godly woman who surrendered her life to her Heavenly Father as she discovered who she was. This book was about a woman who cared more about living life as a godly wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend than having her way. This book taught me about love, marriage, motherhood, working with excellence while forgiving oneself for imperfections, serving in one’s church, serving in one’s community, etc. This book was rich with history, but the overall theme was one of living a life of servanthood to a Heavenly Father who loves unconditionally. This book is one to be read in one sitting; although with my schedule it took a week. The book is battered from being carried everywhere so I could slip moments of reading in throughout my day. This book is one I will ponder for weeks and months to come. It’s a book that will stay with the reader long after the last page is closed. I cannot wait for the next volume. I received an Advanced Reader Copy of this book, but was not obligated to write a review. All opinions are mine.
In A Midwife in Amish Country: Celebrating God's Gift of Life, author Kim Woodard-Osterholzer invites you into people's homes and bedrooms with grace, humility, and respect for a culture that can be shocking and different to her own. Her story blends an honest truth, a deep faith, and a kind vulnerability that welcomes you into her joys and struggles, first as a human and then as a midwife. Her story is one of inspiration, coming of age and into calling that details the balancing act of womanhood and motherhood and the ways in which community, support, and synchronicity propelled her journey. Kim's deep faith is woven throughout the pages. As much as this novel is a story of midwifery and what it is to serve the Amish, it is a story of her growth and experience as a person. Much of the theme is an illustration of her relationship with God as the winds of change guide her destiny and enable her to fulfill her purpose. As a woman who doesn't share her faith, I do not find her professions of faith to be imposing or directed; Instead, it is her personal testament to the celebration of all that she loves (God, family, women and of course BABIES!!!). Her struggles are vulnerable. Her language is ripe, gentle and welcoming. It does not boast and is not over-complicated. Reading this Advance Reader Copy from the publisher, was like having Kim Woodard-Osterholzer sitting across from me as I drink coffee and marvel at her love of those whom she serves and her effervescent joy in sharing it. For anyone with a curiosity in the Amish, in the love of birth and the pursuit of calling, this novel is exactly the one you need to read.