I'm a little done with the doom and gloom posts of recent in this forum, I know it's no good for my emotions....as my first homebirth approaches (well, in May), I'd love to flood my mind and heart with postive homebirth stories. So please share if you'd like, what was especially wonderful about it? What are the moments you most remember? I've already read through Ina May's book, I just LOVED the confidence those stories gave me for my last natural hospital birth, I'd love more!! Thanks!
Postive Homebirth Stories!
Saw this in new posts.
I had my DS at home in February. It was a long, but manageable labor. I had my mom on skype-which was pretty nice. DS came out wide eyed, pink, and screaming. Our MW placed him on my belly (short cord) and he crawled up to my chest--she had to keep pulling him back down because of the short cord! I loved the smell of breakfast coming up to my bedroom right after he was born (never has anything tasted so delicious!) DH, DS, and I took a nap in our own bed a little while after the birth. I wouldn't change a thing!
My homebirth experience was the *BEST* DAY* OF * MY LIFE*
When people ask about how my DD's birth went they are surprised at my answer. My home water birth gave me the feeling of being in control of a situation where one usually feels anything but that. I remember thinking how vulnerable I was between contractions and thinking "I can't imagine doing this anywhere else than here at home!".
On my midwife's suggestion, I planned a relaxing and distracting activity for the very beginning of labor. After my first few... "I think i had a contraction...Yes, that was a contraction!" I baked a lovely apple crisp. Called DH at work, and he decided he was too excited so he would come home shortly. Now, the smell of apple crumble forever reminds me of my DD's beautiful birth!
I also remember being in my shower and DH helping with the hand held shower-head onto my back and abdomen... a lovely feeling during contractions. I also remember my midwife coming into the bathroom and suggesting that i move into the birth pool, i remember stepping into my living room and seeing the minor preparations my Mother had done to the room, candles and low light. It only registered for a moment, but it was a moment of thankfulness to my mother for the small kindness.
DD was born in August, labor started around 12pm and she was born at 10pm. I remember right before she was born it began to rain, and then thunder and lightning a little. I personally *love* a good summer thunderstorm and I remember thinking what a beautiful sound it was to be hearing during this moment!
When DD was born and then placed on my chest she didn't cry, she just looked around with an expression of amazement. The midwife did give her a little pinch on the foot to get her going but I don't really remember. DH was supporting me from behind and we both just gazed at our beautiful little one. (I'm getting teary now!) We stayed that way for quite some time, DD latched on right away!!
I remember the feeling when one of the midwives helped me out of the birth pool and into my shower, I had done it! And i was very happy to use my own body wash, and nice cozy towels, then into my nice pjs next to DH and my brand new DD!!! We all had a beautiful visit and tried to decide on a name. My mother brought us some of the crumble that I had baked hours earlier, we ate and gazed at this person we'd all been so excited to meet. Then my new family and I snuggled in for the night into our own bed! Fantastic!!
What a lovely thread! Now I'm in a fantastic mood! Thank-you!!!
My first homebirth memories... not being able to answer questions. haha! I remember my midwife asking me things (like stay in the water or get out?) and all I could answer was "I don't know"... she switched her tactic to suggesting things directly and leaving it to me to refuse if I was against it. I love her for that!! In my head I did know, but my brain was short circuiting in labor land. :) I so doubted I was really in labor (even tho I was 40+2) and I didn't call my best friend to come soon enough. She got there really late in the process - as if she would have minded sitting around for false labor for a few hours and then leaving! Silly labor head! I remember that dd was born as I squatted next to the bed and nearly hit the floor as she bungee jumed out of me. My amazing dh was wanting to catch her, but he came up to my ear to whisper that the head was out (silly man... as if I didn't know!!) and she never stopped coming out. My mw turned back around from reaching for a compress and dove under to literally catch her. Dd is still the wild child 6 years later. I had a dream that I journaled around 6 mos pg where dd was laying on the floor and I moved the towels to see what gender we had... it played out exactly as it had in my dream. I also remember that while many of my supplies were nearby, we wound up sending my best friend (who was photographing for us) out to the kitchen at 3am searching for a bowl for the placenta. Oops! I also remember the intense HIGH from doing it that way at home (as opposed to my med-free hospital birth). Dd was born at 250am and I didn't go to sleep until after 10am. I was hyper and high and babymooning, even as dh passed out. :) I really thought I would be more tired than I was. I also remember saying that same day that I would do it again tomorrow if it didn't take so long to cook a baby!
My second homebirth memories... my big kids (then 6 and 3) helping like sweet little elves. My oldest had a pad of paper and pen acting like my "labor waiter" writing down that I needed more water before running off to fill my cup. My water broke before labor started (by a few hours) and the kids were aware and they were literally bouncing off the walls waiting for baby and for dh to get home from work. I put on a movie and sat on the birth ball trying to keep their attention on the movie instead of racing around the house. I remember them taking turns sitting in their kid sized chair next to the pool keeping me company. I remember little 3yo dd (she's now 6) laying on the floor, face pressed up against the side of the birth pool asking if the baby was here yet like every 15 minutes. After spending months prepping the kids that I don't yell in labor, the baby came out with a nuchal hand and funky positioned head and I yelled - they backed up some, but their amazement at the process regardless is something I can STILL see as a vivid memory. I remember dd's little voice announcing the gender "I love my brother!! He's so cute!" before we had even checked ourselves. Then she got to use her big girl preschool skills and help cut the cord too. She had asked to do it a few weeks prior to the birth when she realized someone would need to cut it. I remember the pride on ds1's face as he got to hold his new brother first (after mommy obviously) so that the mw and dh could get me out of the pool and situated in bed. I remember hearing him in the other room awing over the placenta with the mw as she went over it with him. Ds 2 was born at 1030p on the eve of ds1's birthday... so we were all still up at midnight and after we sang Happy Birth Day to the new baby (tradition for us) we sang it for ds1 too. :)
Wow I am teary too now thinking about doing this again with them in a few weeks!! We are a family of birth & baby junkies and we're all wired in anticipation. Its like we're getting Christmas twice! ;)
thank you! I've been forgetting the joyful amazing parts of homebirth as I've been so focused on the critical practical stuff...keep sharing! I love hearing all those details and wondering what mine will be like. My 2 year old has declared that she will watch and will be wearing gloves just like the midwife :)
I am glad you are staying away from negative stories as best as you can. I did my best to do the same while pregnant. I was sure to stop people when they started in on a negative story and I did not watch birth videos as to only visualize our birth. Our homebirth was fantatsic. My fondest memories.... laboring in my home, in my comfort, with my best friend. Our home lit by candle light, stock simmering on the stove. Having my DS placed on my chest. Waking up to my home clean and laying in bed with my DS and DH, dog and cat too. Fantastic morning.... makes me cry just thinking of it.
This was just what I was looking for! Life has been so busy with this pregnancy (#2) that I haven't had time to think about it at all.
DS#1 was almost born at home. I had my full labour and 3 hours of pushing at home, and I wouldn't have wanted to be anywhere else. I also remember not being able to talk, but thinking answers. Like when the midwives were asking where the towels were, and I thought "They're in the closet right there" but said nothing. They eventually found them. I LOVED being in the bathtub and being able to roll over in it with so much less effort than in a bed.
We did end up transfering because I was pushing for so long, but even that worked out well. The ride there or the elevator or something moved my DS just enough to finally come out on his own. If I had been in the hospital the whole time, they probably would have had to use different interventions. So overall, a wonderful birth! I remember the next day saying to a friend "I can do that again, not quite yet, but deffinatly can do that again!"
My homebirths were fabulous and both my boys were meconium babies - no transfer.
On Friday, July 18th after trying everything from acupuncture to chili peppers to encourage the baby to come out I decided that I would indeed be pregnant for the rest of my life and if nothing else, it would be excellent birth control.
On July 19th, my 24th birthday I woke up at 8AM having contractions. I was absolutely giddy with excitement. I told Clinton that we were going to have the baby today, something I had told him everyday for the past 9 days, needless to say he didn't bother waking up! Around 9 I got out of bed and did some chores. When I got up and moved around the contractions became less intense and spaced out more, this was kinda disappointing as it meant that I was not in real labor yet. While this was going on my mom was in route to Tucson, set to arrive at about 12. I debated whether to have my Aunt pick her up at the airport, and I called my midwife, Lisa, to see what she thought. Lisa basically told me that I should go about my day as normal, and if my contractions started getting in a normal pattern of being longer, stronger and closer together then I should consider it the beginning of labor.
We picked up my mom from the airport and then drove around for about an hour trying to find a restaurant that was open for lunch. (In Tucson all of the local businesses either close or change their hours during the summer.) Finally we made it to Ghini's, an excellent little French cafe. I ate a ridiculous amount of food; soup, salad, garlic bread, and pasta. After we were done eating we went over to the bakery part of the cafe and loaded up on decadent goodies, we got all sorts of cakes, pastries and tarts. While we were in the bakery I had to sit down and breath through a contraction, jokingly the woman behind the counter asked me if I was having labor pains, and I told her that I was! She was very excited by this and proceeded to tell me all bout her daughter's births, it was such a sweet interaction, her advice was to walk around as much as possible while in labor.
The rest of the day we hung out around the house with contractions coming and going, but never getting really intense or constant. In the evening I rested while my mom and Clinton went to the store and stocked up on goodies. Around 8 Clinton and I went on a walk to the Sants Cruz River (don't be mislead, the river doesn't actually have water in it except a few days a year.) My contractions really slowed down as we were walking around. It was a great walk though, we met a neighbor who has an Akita, the same breed as one of our dogs. And then, another neighbor stopped us and asked us if we wanted their crib! It is a beautiful wooden crib, and who knows, we may actually use it someday. My mother didn't know what to make of it when we came back from our walk carrying a crib.
Around 9 I went to bed, it had started to monsoon (thunderstorm) so we opened the bedroom windows . I was able to sleep in between contractions and thunderclaps. At this point the intensity of the contractions picked up, to the point where I was moaning through them, but still falling back asleep in between them. Around midnight I woke up and got in the bathtub. I continued to sleep in between contractions, and in between my head slipping below the water line. At about 1AM I had two contractions that absolutely floored me. While I was having them I thought, "Oh no, I cannot do this, I'm going to need to go to the hospital and get an epidural." I thought that these contractions were the beginning of active labor, but in retrospect I realize that this was actually my 'transition,' the time right before the pushing stage that is the most painful part of labor. I managed to get out of the tub and wake Clinton up to tell him that it was time to call Lisa. With the next contraction I was pushing. I was very confused at this point, I didn't understand why my body was pushing as in my mind, I was just beginning labor. Clinton came in the bathroom and asked if he should start timing contractions or call Lisa right away. I told him that I didn't care what he did, at this point I still couldn't believe I was pushing already. Thankfully, he called Lisa and told her I was pushing. This was at about 1:20. In the meanwhile Clinton was telling me not to push, and I kept telling him I couldn't not push. I had no control over my body at that point, and it was pushing the baby out! Lisa arrived at 1:45, my mom who was sleeping on the couch the whole time woke up to see her running past into our bedroom. My mom said her first thought waking up was, "what's her rush?"
After grabbing the midwife's equipment and throwing the dogs out, Clinton came and sat on the edge of the tub and supported me while I pushed. My mom was in the bathroom too, acting as Lisa's assistant, grabbing things and writing down times as Lisa told her to. Little Rowan came out at 2:08 AM. As he was born I reached down and pulled him onto my chest. The first thing I did was look in between his little legs and announce that he was a boy! Although I must have done it quietly as no one heard me say it. He had the most amazing umbilical cord it was perfectly coiled and looked like it was 5 feet long, although I'm sure that was an exaggeration. After a few minutes Clinton cut the cord, and a few minutes after that we moved onto the bed to deliver the placenta.
I was expecting Rowan to be at least 30 pounds, so you can imagine my surprise when he measured in at 5 pounds 6 ounces. Every single inch of him is perfect and soft and smells like the most delicious pastry imaginable. He is so precious. I cannot even begin to explain how my heart overflows with love every time I look at him, or every time I watch Clinton holding and looking at him.
P.S. This was a planned homebirth!
Good for you, mama! Fill your mind with positive, affirming birth stories.
I've had two WONDERFUL homebirths, absolutely mind-blowingly amazing.
And here's Clementine's:
And here's the photo montages of my second homebirth, if you want some visual images of pure homebirth baby bliss. :)
Fair warning: brevity is not my strong suit, so these stories are long. ;)
Here is my most recent homebirth of Ds4. I decided to post it finally, just for you.
Here is Ds3's homebirth story. It was the most peaceful, amazing birth.
Here is Ds2's very fast homebirth.
I wish I could add Ds1's to the list... but he was born in the hospital. I thought it was a great birth at the time... which it was, for a hospital birth.
* Freedom of movement. Both of my babies were OP. Hospital birthing can all-to-often force a woman on her back with schtuff hooked up to her, so I question whether I could have gotten my babies to turn in a hospital the way I was able to at home.
* The whole Midwifery Model of Care and comfort I could take in evidence-based practice. No routine EFM, no routine IVs, no food or drink restrictions, no clock-watching or "moving things along" with Pit.....They let my birth unfold on its own, all the while monitoring carefully in case an intervention was necessary. I know, I know. It's all a cliche homebirth argument, but to personally experience it all is something else entirely.
* Because of the aforementioned, my trust was up and my defenses were down. There was no worrying: "What instrument is she grabbing? What is she going to do? Did they remember that X wasn't in my birth plan?" I could just surrender and focus on my birth.
* No traveling in the car. Nuff said!
Okay, I will share mine, too. It was truly the best day of my life
Those of you who knew me well during the pregnancy and birth of Gabe know that it was a very traumatic experience in more ways than I can recount in this note. The short of it is, at 22 weeks I started bleeding heavily and was told it was unlikely that Gabe would survive and certainly not that I would make it to term. I was in the hospital for a while and then at home on bedrest until the c-section at 35 weeks. I had a couple more episodes of bleeding and it was determined that I had a very rare but potentially fatal complication called a vasa previa - I had 2 placentas that were connected by the umbilical cord which was draped across the opening of my cervix. When I moved, it bled, and Gabe and I were both in danger.
Needless to say, Gabe is a happy, healthy and perfectly amazing little boy. I am blessed in ways that have made me re-think the way the universe works. Everything turned out well, except for the lingering trauma I endured for the past 2 years surrounding this experience. So many people were dismissive of my feelings - "well, you ended up with a healthy baby and that is all that matters" Really? Well, duh, thank you. Perhaps if you could crawl into my brain for a minute you would see the giant, gaping scar left behind from the stress and terror I was under for so long.
So this time around, barring any complications, of course - I was ready to face birth like G-d intended. At home, surrounded by loved ones and in the most natural state possible. Many people are afraid of home birth - afraid of what could go wrong, afraid of not being *able* to do it... I had no fear, and I mean that. I put my faith into the power of karma and healing and I had not one doubt that home birth was our intended path.
At 2am on Monday, July 20th, a contraction woke me. This was not a braxton-hicks - this was painful. They continued every 10 minutes until about 7am. The intensity picked up but they remained far apart. I baked a birthday cake for Kaya, knowing today would be the day. Around 9 my water broke and at 10 my sister-in-law arrived. We went for a walk that kicked the contractions into high gear, sending them to every 5 minutes apart and becoming very, very strong.
My midwife came as we were filling the birth pool. The water was wonderful and I labored in there for a couple of hours. Around 3pm I got the urge to push and did so very gently. I worked very hard on using my slow, controlled breathing and deep exhaling to work with the contraction instead of tensing up against it. After 2 hours of pushing, I began to feel sleepy and actually dozed off a bit in between the outrageous surges. I was not making much progress getting her out, though, so my midwife suggested trying some pushing on land. That was exactly what I needed - gravity! I stood for several pushes and got her to crown. My legs were getting tired and so I got onto hands and knees for the final rounds. Kaya Rose was born at 6:23pm with one big, giant controlled push that took every single ounce of strength and confidence I could gather up. It was the most beautiful, loving act I have ever done and I hope this feeling stays with me always.
I am in awe of the power of a woman's body. The moment Kaya was born, I knew I had finally become the woman I was always meant to be. My family was with me, in the comfort of our home and a blissful peace and quiet that could never, ever be achieved in the hospital. Nobody told me what to do, nobody told me when I could eat or drink, nobody came uninvited into my room and stuck their fingers inside of me like I was a ticking time bomb. The only intervention I had during labor was the love and encouragement of my husband, my midwife and my amazing sister-in-law Julie.
I have to agree that I loved my home birth. DD1's hospital birth was not terrible or traumatic, but far from what I wanted. Pitocin, followed by 5 hours of intense contractions before getting an epidural. I felt very disconnected from the birth and my DD. Fast forward 2 years....
My water broke at 2:30 and I was having pretty regularly spaced BH, nothing intense or even mentionable. I started feeling the waves at around 4pm, but still could completely talk through them. DH was home and so was my MIL... my mom was on her way over by this time. At 5ish, I was feeling a little crampy and wanted in the birth pool, so it was set up and filling, still completely manageable... DD1 was swimming in the tub with me and just having so much fun. At 5:30ish I wanted out of the pool, getting quite uncomfortable by this time. Told DH to call midwife because I didn't know how long this whole thing would last. Started vocalizing through contractions, but was joking and talking with everyone between them. Midwife arrived at 6:30 and listened to baby and I was talking with her about not knowing how long the whole thing would last.... second midwife arrived at 7pm. I think it was about this time that I started pushing involuntarily. It was so amazing to listen to my body... no one had checked my progress or told me when to push or anything. My body said push and I did. I was squatting on the toilet and soon said that the baby was coming. Somehow I moved to the bed and DD1, MIL and mom came in. I pushed a few more times and I delivered the head. Midwife talked DH through the rest of delivery. Amazing to have DH and I the only ones really involved in the birth. DD1 clapped and squealed when the baby was born. Such an amazing moment. DH put DD2 on my chest and said we had another girl!
I loved that I felt in control... I loved that DH delivered our baby.... I loved that I was not told when to push.... I loved that DD1 was there.... I loved the entire thing. We will have another home birth.