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Ep. 49 If you marry a midwife, does that make you a midhusband?

Tanya Tringali 0:00

Did you know that less than 15% of people meet guidelines for recommended amount of physical activity during pregnancy? As health care providers, it is our duty to promote health and wellness throughout the lifespan and the perinatal period is all too often overlooked. Our clients look to us for guidance on this, and we do the best we can with the knowledge we have. But that's often based on a combination of life experiences, common sense, and myths. My new course exercise in the perinatal period for health care providers is designed for providers who are motivated to improve their ability to support their clients in getting or staying active throughout the perinatal period, including their postpartum return to fitness. Click the link in the show notes to learn more. All right, special episode disclaimer. I think everybody listening knows at this point that I have been doing every bit of this podcast by myself. I think everybody also who's listened to you know, practically every episode knows that I have a friend who's a Podcast Producer who helped me out immensely just in terms of helping me get organized, do some things better streamline the process. But I still do this all by myself, which is why when I had some health stuff going on, I got really behind. Anyway, this episode was an idea that I came up with as I was planning my social media posts for around the time that I was getting married. And I realized that I should probably put a picture up of the wedding of me and my new husband. And in doing so I made a silly joke on that post calling him my mid husband introducing him as my mid husband. And that led to this idea that I know how funny some of the things, my friends husband's the things that they say I know how funny they can be. And I just decided I wanted to share them with you. But this is a style of podcast editing. That is by no means in my wheelhouse that I have zero experience and probably zero business engaging in. So bear with me, and I hope that you will at least find this enjoyable, despite it being potentially rough around the edges.

Hey, everyone, I'm your midwife, Tanya Tringali. Welcome to the mother whip podcast, a show about the issues we healthcare consumers and providers face every day as we interact with a medical system. We'll talk about its blind spots, shortcomings, and share strategies we can use to feel seen and heard no matter which side of the table we sit on

Joe 3:03

are we pushing... Lots of inaudible words in this section... The general gist being that his midwife wife, in labor with their third baby, has started pushing.

Tanya Tringali 3:27

This is a clip from a podcast called I'd better start writing this down, which is written and produced by Joe Stracci, who is the husband of a midwife named Danielle Stracci. What you just heard is a little snippet of episode 25 of season 3 called Are we pushing? It is a beautiful story told by a loving husband and father. I can't recommend it highly enough. But it's also the traditional making of a midhusband, the husband of a midwife. This story is really not my story. But I feel like we should tell the more traditional story of how a midhusband comes to be before we dive into my own story. So you know, as I'm as I'm trying to say, this is not the case for me because I don't have children with my midhusband, and we never will. We're both older and it's it's done. The shop is closed for both of us in that regard. Furthermore, I don't attend births when we're together. When I do attend births. I get on an airplane first and either sleep at the hospital if I sleep, or I sleep in a hotel far, far away from him. So he hears some stories, of course, but all in all, he's had an entirely different type of internship than the one you're about to hear.

Joe 4:56

Matter of fact way that tends to exclude me I've learned some of the lingo over the years. can do a pitch perfect impression of Danielle on a 2am phone call with the answering service. Yeah.

Danielle 5:11

Are you just saying?

Joe 5:13

I was just recounting how I know your conversation with the answering service whenever you call two o'clock in the morning. Yeah, hi, this is Danielle. Okay, go ahead. I'll talk to her. Yeah, hi, this is Danielle Stracci. The midwife su partera. Yes. Hi, is this Gladys? Gladys? Is there some? Is there something wrong with your connection? Okay, what's going on? Tell me what was what's happening. Oh, okay. And how far apart are the contractions? I said, How far apart are the contractions? Okay, what what have you been eating today? When what? How much water? I said, What? How much water have you drank? Okay, well, you can come in and we'll put you on the monitor. Okay. How far are you from the hospital? I said How far are you from the hospital? Okay. I'm gonna call them and let let them know that you're coming in. Do you happen to remember if your GBS positive or negative? GBS positive or negative?

Tanya Tringali 6:42

I mean, this is like the big times like only the real deal mid husbands know this shit, like GBS. So I mean, like he's been at it a long time. He's got a lot of credentials behind his name at this point.

Joe 6:57

Gladys Hello. Hello. Okay, okay, honey. I'm gonna tell them that you're coming. Okay. And then as a little pause as you click off in the phone lit up on the screen. Yeah. Hi, its Danielle. Yeah I have a patient coming in? Gladys Quinceañera. Yep, she's 25 GBS positive. Yeah, she's you know, she's she's feeling uncomfortable. She's saying contraction that every four minutes. Five minutes. Yeah, she's. She's second baby. Yeah. Okay. Yeah, when you get her they're just starting. You know? Dammit. I can't think in the moment but you always say the same thing. Yeah. A bolus of fluid. Blah, blah, blah.

Tanya Tringali 7:57

A bolus of fluid. Another one. I mean, like, he's really going for it here. I love it. Not many midhusbands know the word bolus. For those of you who don't know that word. It's what we call like, a lot of fluid all at once through an IV.

Joe 8:14

Okay, yeah, I'll be right in. And then you hang out and you're hanging out your mother. Gladys. Hello?

Tanya Tringali 8:32

That's probably my favorite part. I mean, all their clinical silly clinical knowledge aside. That's where the midhusband really comes into play is being the person who watches us have to go from dead asleep to I actually have to get up, get out of this bed, drive my car and then be awake for God only knows how long. So no matter how much we love our job, I'm pretty sure the vast majority of us go mother fucker. When we first hang up from that call when we recognize that we have to wake up in the middle of the night. Thank you Joe and Danielle for kicking us off. Moving on. I have a couple you actually know the midwife. She has been on two episodes. Her name is Rachel Mast. She is a midwife in Idaho. She is a CPM catches babies at a beautiful Birth Center. She is also a pregnancy and postpartum athleticism coach and amazing athletes. So I've had her on twice talking about fitness in the perinatal period. And also she came on to recount her birth story and talk to us about her experience, kind of moving through her own postpartum recovery and returning to fitness herself. So anyway, I'll make sure to link to those episodes. They are fantastic. Anyway, she and her husband, Josh, have shared some things that are special to them about the role of the mid husband.

Rachel 10:09

Okay, so why don't you start by telling everybody how long you've been a mid husband?

Josh 10:16

Well, we've been married as for just about six and a half years, but you could probably add the year we were dating and engaged. So by seven half years at this point,

Rachel 10:32

so basically, you're very experienced.

Josh 10:36

I mean, yes. Yeah, especially since midwifery is look different. On the seven half years, we've been together. When we're dating, you're not only a midwife, but you're also a teacher, or professor of Midwifery, as well, with cohorts of students. And then when we got married, you were still doing that. And even that took on different capacities, even traveling internationally for that. And then yeah, we had moved. And you were just a practicing birth assistant in Austin. Shift work, though, it's, you know, basically the same on my end, in the sense of, you know, you could be called in the middle of the night or the middle of the day out of nowhere. And then, you know, as we moved back to the Boise area. Anyway, you're on call and even sometimes you're on call when you're not on call. Yeah. So yeah, it's it's still Midwifery, but sometimes it might look different in different seasons, and in different capacities.

Rachel 11:55

Okay. So before you tell this story, maybe let Tanya's listeners know what a primip myth is. And I'm curious to know what your definition of a primip is.

Josh 12:07

Yeah. So I think, very simplified primip is just a first time mom who has not given birth before.

Rachel 12:16

Okay, that works. Yep.

Josh 12:21

So one of my co workers at the restaurant I was working at at a time. His older sister was, I believe, going into labor. And he was updating me and asked how long it how long it's been, it'd been a handful of hours, maybe five or six at the time. And I remember asking, like, Oh, is she a primip? And he's just looked at me like, What was like, is she a primip? Just me being like a mid husband. I'm like, I hear this term all the time. Not thinking that others don't use this terminology. And he just stares at me, stares at me. And he says, she's not a monkey, if that's what you're asking. Like, no, like, it's not her first child.

Speaker 3 13:12

primip not primate. Yes. And that's when you know, you're a good husband, and you're not like all the other guys.

Tanya Tringali 13:24

Oh, my God, absolutely hysterical. Um, I literally just listening to this for the first time right now and recording myself, you know, laughing and feeling the feels about what just happened there. And it actually reminds me of a story that has nothing to do with midhusbands. But it's kind of in the same vein of like, when people don't understand terminology. When my kid was in middle school, at some point, she told someone, a friend that I was a midwife. And that friend said back to her something like, it must be weird having a mom who's pregnant all the time. And my daughter said, she's a midwife, not a surrogate.

Rachel 14:08

So pretty recently, I took a phone call from a first time mom, who suspected she was in active labor. And I had my I had my suspicions about whether she really was ready to be admitted to the birth center. And so I was asking her questions about her contraction pattern, including how long her contractions were, and I believe she reported them to be 90 seconds long or something to that effect. And I was on the phone with her you are close by. And I think I said to the client, are you having a contraction now? She said, Yes. And where did you What did you do?

Josh 14:48

I immediately just started counting with my fingers up to your face as you're on the phone. And it reached about 30 seconds. It was like 29 and then she started talking again at the 30 second mark. And I was just like, yeah, nope, that's that's way too early to go in.

Tanya Tringali 15:12

Oh, Josh is very wise at the stage of his career. He knows that. You don't want to be admitted to the birth center prematurely, and you want to stay home as long as possible. He's definitely solid with the basics. What would

Rachel 15:27

you say is the strangest phone call that you have overheard between me and a client?

Josh 15:33

Well, there's been a handful, I know for a fact. But the one that comes to my mind first would be we were actually showering together, and we get a phone call. And you answer very professionally, and then the client just immediately goes into talking. Well, it was on speakerphone, first of all, but the client just goes straight into talking about what she suspects to be vaginal infection. And I'm like, pretending to like plug my ears and not listen. But I'm like, Oh, this is kind of the life and I know, you hear all sorts of things all the time.

Rachel 16:15

And I think I'd put it on speaker because my, I had soap in my hair, I didn't want to touch the phone to my face. That was a bad call.

Josh 16:25

I'm really hopped out of the shower, dried off.

Rachel 16:31

But now you probably know how to cure a yeast infection.

Josh 16:35

I might need to be reminded, but

Rachel 16:38

at the birth center where I work, our electronic record system has the question on patients intake forms. Who may we thank for referring you. And recently, one of my colleagues pointed out that she had done an intake for a new client. And that question, they answered, we can thank Joshua Mast, which is my husband. And so she said to me, Rachel, Joshua is referring people here now. And I kind of put two and two together and realize that this couple, Joshua had referred, he knew them through the cigar lounge where he bartends and I explained to my colleague that yeah, Joshua finds pretty much any reason to talk about what me as a midwife, or I don't even know, what do you talk to people about at the bar? How do you how do you go from cigars and whiskey to midwifery care? How does that transition happen?

Josh 17:41

I just like to brag about my awesome wine, okay. Just I mean, natural conversation, you always ask the bartender, what's your life? Like? What do you do for fun? Like, oh, what's your wife? Do? You know, I've gotten that working in the service industry for the last 12 years. You know, you kind of get to know your regulars a little bit on a little bit more personal level. And, you know, I, I like talking about the things I love, like my wife, and you know, the things I think she's like, I'm, I'm proud of in her in you. And, you know, and being in Idaho, midwifery is not the most well known thing. And so, there's some misconceptions that I like to correct pretty promptly if people you know, share that. Or if they just are super curious, or like, hey, yeah, I know, someone that had had a home birth or, you know, some people know a little bit or like, oh, so it's just you work with the hospital or out of the hospital, you know, and so, you know, there's always the curious types that ask questions, and it goes into a longer conversation coming to snow snowballs, and then

Rachel 18:56

and then before you know it, you're giving them my cell phone number. And I'm doing consultations with expectant parents.

Josh 19:04

Yes, at a local coffee shop. Then I don't when I didn't even know that was happening. They just asked for your number. It happens.

Rachel 19:13

Yeah. This is normal stuff. Yes. Compared to husbands that you know, that are not mid husband, so they don't have a spouse, that's a midwife. How does your life look different?

Josh 19:25

Well, one of the first things that comes to mind is the amount of times I've driven to some random house that I don't even know where who this is and to drop you off some food or coffee. Usually on the doorstep. Yep, doorstep where you might be able to poke your head out for a brief second. And sometimes I'll get lucky enough to get a kiss but so things like that. The amount of times we've had to say, Oh, I guess we'll drive separately to this function, or event or this friend's house. Just because you know, You're on call, you know, like, well, I could drive you, then then you'd be there stuck at the birth center or the the home. And I'd have to come get in the middle of the night. There has been a few times where that has happened. We're like, oh, no, what's the chances of you getting called? And

Rachel 20:15

then it's famous last words? Yeah. Oh, it's not likely that I'll get a call tonight.

Josh 20:20

Yeah, I mean, thankfully, I don't think we've had to, like walk out of a rush out of a restaurant, you know, or a date night kind of concept. Because your call them in that might might have happened once. But

Rachel 20:32

we're usually pretty good about not scheduling dates for nights when I'm on call. And I do have a call schedule. That is fairly predictable.

Josh 20:42

Yeah. But I still would have expected it to happen more. And there's that thoughts always in the back of my mind. So there is a sense of kind of urgency when there's nothing actually urgent. Yeah, it's kind of moving swiftly through things to then be in a relaxed state for when you do get called. But there's plenty of time where there's been a change of plans, I would say more than the average person, just the nature of being a mid husband can count and roll with the punches.

Rachel 21:14

I'm also thinking that compared to non med husbands, that you buy a ridiculous amount of Ben and Jerry's ice cream.

Josh 21:26

Yeah, yep. It's, I would say, it's not every time but more often than not, if you've been out to birth, the night before a day before, there will be a pint of Ben and Jerry's ice cream in the freezer for you. And with me a few bites. Come on, we share it. Maybe you might share two bites. That's not true. That's not true. Yeah. Okay, I eat more than half of it actually.

Rachel 21:54

And Case in point, as we're having this conversation, we have a pint of Ben and Jerry's. That's waiting for us because I did three births in the last 24 hours. And we're gonna bust into that.

Josh 22:06

Yep. Yeah. And you probably get a foot rub. So you get a lot of foot roll.

Speaker 3 22:11

Now that's on recording, so I can use that against you. Wait, did you say I'm gonna get a lot of rubs? It's still recording.

Tanya Tringali 22:24

Loving these two. Okay, so that was interesting for me to hear, because I hadn't really processed how much our call schedule doesn't just affect us. It affects the people we live with. So in all the years that I was on call, I was a single mom and I didn't live with, you know, any partner that I may have been dating. And so you know, while yeah, I've abandoned shopping carts and the grocery store went on call that really only affected me. I mean, I'm acutely aware of how it affected my child growing up. It's a really different life. But I had not really thought about how that might affect someone's husband. I'm really digging the Ben and Jerry's in the foot rubs though, so I'm seeing the two way street. This is where things are a little bit different for me and my mid husband, the newest midhusband on the block, as I've been referring to him. He met me after I admitted that I had burnout to myself, after I had done something about it. He probably saw me more as an entrepreneur than a midwife. In this capacity, he learned a lot about the pelvic floor, and particularly how it behaves and pregnant and postpartum people while they're exercising. He knows a diastasis recti when he sees one. But he'll probably never say things like, my dear friend, Kathy's husband, Pete. Actually, you guys know Kathy, she did an episode with me on postpartum Sex. I'll link to that in the show notes. Anyway, her husband Pete is oh, probably the most experienced mid husband. I know. Here are some of the silly things he has to say when he is wearing his midhusband hat.

Pete 24:30

So after all these years of listening to Late Night calls and back and forth with patients, I feel fully qualified to deliver a baby I know that I shouldn't apply fundal pressure. I know that the person shouldn't be lying on their back. And if I'm on an aeroplane and someone is having a baby, I'm all over it. I'm the guy to help.

Tanya Tringali 24:48

Let me just say any husband who talks about fundal pressure and knows that it should be avoided has earned their title.

Pete 24:57

So when my midwife wife gets called in, I want to know whether it's a primip because it'll be a long time. But I know that if it's a duep, or a triceratops, it might not be as long. But if it's a quadriceps, all bets are off.

Tanya Tringali 25:13

I'm a gullible Gao, anyone who knows me knows that I can never tell when somebody's joking, or lying. To me, it's, it's a nearly impossible task. But even I know he's joking, because I know how smart he is. He's, of course, making jokes here, which I can appreciate. Because at the root of it, he is acknowledging what it feels like to be married to someone who is gonna go out and be gone for a long time. And a huge piece of that, in reality is whether that's a first baby or a subsequent baby.

Pete 25:48

So when my wife says, she may not get home for dinner, I say turn up the pit.

Tanya Tringali 25:54

And I'm gonna let him and on that note, which for anyone in the know, you're going like ......, which I totally get, but it's a joke. He's joking. We midwives generally speaking, do not think this way. But our midhusbands who miss us sometimes do. All right, so now you get to meet my husband, Pablo. Pablo, just for some context is kind of a sickeningly smart. Person who knows a lot of things about a lot of subjects. He speaks multiple languages, he learns things so fast, it's kind of scary. He was in the military for 27 years, and yet he listens to classical music and reads poetry and philosophy. He's just like, full of contradictions. But he has been approaching this idea about this podcast in a pretty funny way, I think, you know, very differently than the other mid husbands who I recruited, you know, just to share their thoughts that they didn't know they were going to end up sharing. Whereas, you know, Pablo, kind of saw me come up with the idea for this. And, you know, everything sent has turned into a little bit of a quiz show. So I'll open it up with what my car rides with him have been like lately. What is vaginismus?

Pablo 27:33

Vaginitis would be an inflammation of the vaginal lining. Vaginismus is when there are conditions that are not favorable for the fertilization of an egg. Because the pH balance is less than four, therefore too acidic. In no way Jose, there's a good bit of baby in there.

Tanya Tringali 28:12

Vaginismus is actually when the body has an automatic response, usually due to fear or something of that nature, where the muscle spasm in relation to vaginal penetration, so nothing to do with fertility or her baby being in there or not. But you can hear that he is pulling from little bits of things he has learned about the vagina and vaginal health over time, as he guesses at this one, I'm assuming I no longer remember for sure. But I'm assuming that we were talking about something and I said vaginal Asmus. And he said something like, Oh, yes, federalism as I'm sure I know what that is, or, you know, something like that, which is what led him to be put on the spot to try to answer that one. The other thing that's been funny about talking to him is that he will remember the essence of what something is or you know what the conversation around a given topic was, but he won't remember what it's called, especially when there are similar named things. So going back to that last clip, you've got vaginitis, he loves the word vaginosis that's a big one. And then of course, vaginismus which kind of sounded like it went in there, which is why he, you know, took the avenue that he took shortly thereafter, we had another conversation which we'd actually had many times before about a particular maneuver used in births that he can never remember the names of. So what maneuver Are you trying to remember?

Pablo 29:51

The one for shoulder dystocia?

Tanya Tringali 29:53

Well, is it done early in the process or late in the process?

Pablo 29:56

Well, it's clearly once they don't have any other choice. They have to push the baby back in.

Tanya Tringali 30:02

What's it called?

Pablo 30:05

Ziferelli maneuver

Tanya Tringali 30:05

Nope, try again.

Pablo 30:07


Tanya Tringali 30:07


Pablo 30:09

Its Italian...Zitungucci...I don't remember that.

Tanya Tringali 30:16


Pablo 30:16


Tanya Tringali 30:18

But one time you said...

Pablo 30:19

Isnt that what I said?

Tanya Tringali 30:19

No you didn't and I can play it back so you hear it but what I was expecting you to to say

Pablo 30:24

I used to say Zapruter.

Tanya Tringali 30:24

That's what I thought you were gonna say! Zapooter maneuver

Pablo 30:27

You laughed to hard at me.

Tanya Tringali 30:28

You said Zapooter maneuver.

Pablo 30:30

I said Zapruder because thats the film of JFK getting shot.

Tanya Tringali 30:34


Pablo 30:34

Zapruder film is a very...

Its an author like a director. This is, No. It's the actual footage that the guy took with an eight millimeter camera. When JFK got shot.

Tanya Tringali 30:45

Why has it got that weird name?

Pablo 30:46

Because that's his last name.

Tanya Tringali 30:47

It's someone's last man's name?

Pablo 30:50

John, whatever, something John Zapruder, let's say, and his film is known as Zapruder film. And it's the only evidence that existed.

Tanya Tringali 30:58

I thought you just made that up, oh, Zapruder maneuver

Pablo 31:01

just sounded right.

Tanya Tringali 31:05

And so as often happens, when we're talking about birth, and women's health and fitness and all these things, the tables often turn and in the end, I end up being the one who learned something new. But recently, he hit the nail on the head. He was flipping channels, and he came across a medical show. And he knew exactly what to do if someone has an ectopic pregnancy. So tell me what happened when you were watching Chicago Med the other day.

Pablo 31:41

In the episode, there was a young couple who come in with their first pregnancy. And the doctor says, what's wrong? She said the mother to be says, What's my first pregnancy and I don't feel right. I feel like something's wrong. And the doctor was like, you're probably fine. But let's check you out and starts doing an ultrasound. And they show the image of the ultrasound. And the whole time I'm thinking, Tanya would think that this is garbage, like this is not the way it's done, right? But this show the image of the ultrasound, and I looked at the image, the ultrasound and I was like ectopic pregnancy. The doctor goes, I have some bad news, you have what we call an ectopic pregnancy. And the young father goes, what, what does that mean? And I said it's very dangerous to the mother and the child and it has to be terminated. You said that I said that out loud. Okay, I'm speaking to the TV got it. Okay. It's very dangerous to the mother and to the child. Because the fetus is developing in the fallopian tube and it can kill the mother, the terminate the pregnancy has to be terminated. And she the doctor basically says that. And then the mother says, Well, what are the options? How does this happen? I just yelled at the TV. I went methotrexate. The doctor says, well, there's these pills we use is called methotrexate. And I was like, Yes, I'm a midhusband.

Tanya Tringali 33:09

Good one, baby.

Pablo 33:10

Thank you, honey.

Tanya Tringali 33:11

And so while he will never see me in the immediate aftermath of a birth, covered in amniotic fluid and meconium and blood, sweat and tears. He has become and shall remain my biggest supporter, which is the biggest gift of having a midhusband.

Thank you for listening to the mother whip podcast. If any of the issues we discussed today resonate with you or your experience, I'd love to hear from you. Leave me a voicemail at 917-310-0573 Or better yet, email me a voice memo at I really want to hear what worked for you what didn't work, what support you'd wished you had, how you got through the tough times how you advocated for yourself, or especially any tips you want to share with our listeners. I want to hear all of it. And if you'd really like to work together, you can get a discount on your first consultation with me at using the code, first consult 10% off. That's one 0 % symbol, all one word. Okay. That's all. That's wonderful being in community with you all. Thanks again for listening and see you next time.

Carolina 34:42

And remember, listeners, nothing we discussed on this show should ever be considered medical advice. Please speak to your local provider about anything that comes up in this show that resonates with you and your needs and your health care.

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