Yes, I have a sense of some sisterhood in my midwifery community, but not with all. I find sisterhood in my state midwifery organization (Ohio Midwives Alliance) and online groups such as this site & Hismidwives.
I am supported by some, not all. In the last few years, since "The Big Push" campaign, we are more divided into those who want mandatory licensure, and those who do not want to be licensed. It is a shame that TBP can't compromise with optional licensure. Sigh.
No, I became a midwife out of necessity, since there weren't any others around. I am self-taught, most people just thoght I was crazy to have my babies at home, a few wanted my help, since there were no other out of hospital alternatives around back then (the 1970's)
None really, it was a gradual process. First I was just some wierdo who had homebirths, then a loving friend who helped at others UC births, then for friends of friends, then a "birth attendant" who taught classes and labor sat for a homebirth doctor, I guess the point I had to admit I really was a midwife came when I got my CPM in 1998, but it really happened long before that.