A number of footprints are displayed along the wall at the entrance of The Bastrop Birthing Center. Each footprint is from a different baby born with the help of midwife Ellie Noble and her team.

The only delivery center between Columbus and Austin, The Bastrop Birthing Center offers those in the area a closer option of care.

A closer look

Ellie Noble is a licensed midwife with over 10 years of experience. Noble has assisted over 450 births.

“Whether you're wanting to birth with us or in the hospital, we can help provide all of the care and services that women or people need during their pregnancies,” Noble said.

The Birthing Center schedules check-in appointments every month until 32 weeks into a pregnancy, every two weeks until 36 weeks and then every week until the birth—the same schedule as a physician.

“We work alongside some really good physicians so that—even if you come and you end up being high-risk and need to have a hospital birth in your pregnancy or in your labor—you still have us. And so you don't just hire us for this one portion; you hire us for your entire journey, and so no matter what you have us to walk with you through it,” Noble said.

The center conducts blood work in-house as well as nondiagnostic ultrasounds. The Birthing Center can also perform water births at their location off of Chestnut Street.

Also of note

Even with a background in doulas and midwives, Noble faced confusion during her first pregnancy.

“I didn't really know what it was that I should and shouldn't do,” Noble said. “We have to take control of our experiences.”

According to Noble, patients travel from as far as College Station, Georgetown and San Antonio for the center’s holistic care.

“If they need to go to the hospital, we take them to the hospital. And we stay with them the entire time that they're there so that they are treated how they want to be treated, and we help to advocate them just like a birth support would, like a doula," Noble said. "[Just] because we can't deliver the baby in the hospital doesn't mean that we can't help to make sure that they have the best hospital birth that they didn't have.”

The big picture

The Birthing Center schedules visits with new moms and their babies 24 hours, three days, one week, two weeks and six weeks after a birth. Physicians typically see patients 48 hours after a vaginal delivery and 72 hours after a C-section followed by a visit three days after a birth with a pediatrician.

“We see moms more in the postpartum than any of the other types of practitioners that deliver babies,” Noble said.

In-hospital births are typically followed by a further two week check-in, but new moms rarely see an OB-GYN until six weeks after a birth, according to Noble.

“They're starting to train pediatricians to do screenings for postpartum depression because moms don't see any other physicians,” Noble said. “We do full mom and newborn care for six weeks after delivery ... We like to nurture and take care of both mom and baby.”