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Labor at home then hospital for birth - Page 2

post #21 of 42
My Ob recommended laboring at home for several hours (if you can) before coming to the birthing center. I was at home for 15 hours, and I went in when I was 5 minutes apart from my contractions.
post #22 of 42
I think it is a great idea to labor at home and go fairly late in the game.

The only downfall ... I found, was the car ride is incredibly painful if you are well advanced, and the walk from the parking garage a bit long.

I made it to the hospital with 15 minutes to spare with my third (and was home 2 hours later). With my fourth, I was worried about the car ride (it hurt more than just labor ... every bump, yikes!) I made it at 1:30am, waited until my husband arrived 45 minutes later (I went with the midwife from home) to have my waters broken and babe was born at 3am. WE left at 5:30am after a delayed release because of break for the discharge nurse.

I think arriving last minute is great - and leaving really quick is even better.
post #23 of 42
I just wanted to share my experience too.

I didn't do this on purpose, but DS was born about 15 minutes after getting to the hospital doors. My contractions started 2 minutes apart and continued that way all night. Just before transition in the early morning I had a lull in contractions and at that point I seriously had no idea DS was about to be born. I thought maybe it was prodormal labor (it was 3 wks early so is that an excuse? lol). Then transition hit, and then I knew, but it was BAM! Not kidding, three contractions from that lull until I was pushing in my bathroom. We were ten minutes from the hospital (maybe about 20 counting getting ready time - I was pretty slow moving still having pretty major contractions) and the car was the LAST place I wanted to be at that point. If there is a next time I think I will plan to stay home.

Everyone is different, and I think every labor is also different. But I also agree that you should have a much better time without the pit. From what I've heard.

Good luck, OP!
post #24 of 42
I did this too. I had contractions from 11:30 the night before, then all day long while I went about my errands, work, lunch, estimate on auto body work, chiro appt, Target, then out to dinner with family and to my parents' for dessert. I had been needing to stop and breathe through them since the early afternoon, but at dinner they started getting closer together. Someone took my picture after we ate dessert, and my belly looks totally tan in the photo--even though I hadn't had it out in the sun in forever! It was reddish from working so hard! So we realized it was going to be soon but I wanted to lay down and relax, practice my techniques for a little while before heading to the hospital. As soon as I tried to sit down on the couch, I heard/felt a pop! and water broke all over the place. Cleaning/changing was difficult as the cntx were getting stronger/closer together, so I knew it was TIME TO GO! Car ride was a bit difficult, but I listened to my CD and tried to relax. All the hubbub at L&D was the really ridiculous part, all the stooopid questions they ask you. I did have a chance to lie down and rest while nurse reviewed my birth plan before I started feeling pushing cntx. I told them DD was coming but no one was listening LOL! I arrived to hospital at 7 cm and had DD within about 45 minutes.
post #25 of 42
I too had a Pit first labor - 2 hours from first contraction I ever felt to baby being out - and the contrax with Pit are just awful. No break, very intense from the get-go, no lead up in intensity...

I've read that pit and natural contrax are very, very different for most women. Some will insist they were the same for them, but I think that's the exception, not the norm.

We also live about 10 minutes from the hospital, and I plan to labor at home as long as possible. I just pray I am not ALONE for transition and/or pushing stages to start - our only childcare for 2 yo DD is MIL who is 30-45 minutes away - each way - depending on traffic. I am really afraid I am going to be all alone in the middle of the night crying through labor. Alone. For some reason, that idea of being alone in labor just scares the piss out of me.
post #26 of 42
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tip about using an execise ball.. I'm going to go and have a look in our local sports shops. I'm in Belgium, so unfortunately no Target or Walmart here

It's good to hear so many positive stories about laboring at home as long as possible and how you all coped with it. And that's a good point about having everything totally ready to head out the door for when it's time to leave!! I'm starting to get my bag packed now with the essentials... then DH can come and get anything else at home afterwards.

I'm going to see if the english book shop has a book on the bradley method... I've had a look at their site and it is very interesting. I also enjoyed looking at the spinning babies site. Time to get DH educated

We've got to plan our car ride a bit as we live in an appartment with no set parking space.. so it's pot luck where the car will be parked. DH will have to go and get it whilst I wait in the hall and then we'll zip off to the hospital! Hadn't thought about it but there alot of speed bumps in between here and the hospital lol.. ouch! I'm hoping it's not too bad a car ride!

Betsy - I hope you're not alone either for labor.. that would scare me too. Do you have any friends that live nearby who could come over and be with you? hope it all works out for you!!

thanks for sharing your experiences.. it's really interesting to see what everyone gets up to during labor and how you keep yourself occupied up to the last minute!
post #27 of 42
It's so variable, isn't it? I guess that's why no one can tell you a definitive time to go to the hospital, because there are so many exceptions to every "rule".
I labored at home until my contractions were 3 minutes apart, lasting one minute, for two hours. Got to the hospital at 8 cm. It was SO nice being at home for that time. I do have to say that the contractions were all over the map for most of that day -- sometimes 6 mins, sometimes 2 apart. It's not like they started at 7 and went progressively to 3 minutes, you know? But like other ppl, I just knew when it was time.
DH had loaded the car well beforehand, so when I decided to go we could just go.
While I was standing at our front door waiting for him to get keys or something, my water broke. Sort of like confirmation of my decision
post #28 of 42
Ok I gotta ask. Why not just give birth at home so you don't even have to worry about the car ride or getting there too early or late?
post #29 of 42
Labor was so much easier than I expected (only 4 1/2 hours at that point) that I was ready to push at home as we got into the car. The drive to the hospital took 30 minutes. And then I was told NOT to push for another 30 minutes because the hospital staff needed to do this and that.

So I spent an entire hour holding our DD inside, which was a lot more challenging than the labor itself. They couldn't find her heartrate. I just wanted to push already, damnit! So they pricked her with an internal probe, which ended up not working either.

I don't remember them ever getting a reading, but my hospital records show that the heartrate was of concern. At this point, I was still standing and leaning on the bed, but they told me I had to lie down and push. I was pushing effectively but not "fast enough" for the midwife, so she proceeded to give me (as she called it) an Ina May Gaskin episiotomy. I was insulted by this remark.

DD was born after 30 minutes of pushing. She had a dent in her skull for weeks after birth from me holding her inside for that hour.

She was EXTREMELY colicky and spit up a lot for months. Dunno if this was related to her birth experience or not, as I know many attribute colic to digestive issues. But I thought I'd include it here.

While laboring at home for as long as possible is probably the best advice for most women, I wish I had enough faith in myself to birth at home.

There are many other things about our hospital experience that I wish were different, but that's a whole 'nother topic.

I'm staying home next time...
post #30 of 42
Originally Posted by meganmarie View Post
Check "Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way" out of the hospital and have DH read it. Besides suggesting the external signs (cx 4-5 minutes apart, lasting 1 minute each, for a full hour, painful enough that you are unable to speak or do anything during the contraction) the book also does a great job describing "emotional signposts" - for example, seriousness, self-doubt etc. - that suggest a transition into a more active labor and getting into second stage/transition. It spends a lot more time on "when to go to the hospital" than any other book I've read.

(With the help of this book, my husband and my doulas I arrived at the hospital fully dilated both times and was holding my baby less than 60-90 min later. Awesome.)

One other tip - if you are pursuing this strategy, DONT WAIT to pack up. When you are getting close to transition, that is not the time to: locate the camera, add granola bars to your hospital bag, take the car seat out of the backseat, lay towels down underneath you, find something to throw up into. Spend early labor getting every single thing in place so that when you say "It's time!" you really are 10 min from the hospital. (Vs. me the first time - decided we should really go, then spent 1 hour+ on "getting ready to go" between 2-min contractions, and THEN drove to the hospital - so I was pushing in the car LOL!)
I actually used the opposite strategy. I had a very complete list in the suitcase, but I didn't pack. Now, I had plenty of back-up because my parents were downstairs and I had my doula and my husband. But, I wanted to slow down the rush to the hospital so that we really didn't get there too soon. When I said, "let's go" we still had to pack - worked great and I arrived at 9cm.

I stole this idea from someone whose husband went to wash the car when she was feeling ready to head to the hospital (!). I think her mom went and got take-out or something too. She arrived ready to push, LOL.
post #31 of 42
Thread Starter 
urbancrunchymama - ooh that must have been awful having to wait a whole hour to push!!

I have been thinking all weekend about Shelsi's question.. why not just give birth at home? and to be honest, the more I think about it, the nicer it sounds. I've finally found a small list of mid-wives here and I'm going to contact them today and see what they say about homebirth.

A year ago I would never have considered not going to hospital.. even just for labor. But now, the thought that I could avoid the hospital all together is so calming, and makes me feel good.

So we'll see what these mid=wives say today! thanks so much everyone.
post #32 of 42
that's wonderful juniperberry! i was going to post the same thing about staying home. i labored at home with my first and there was a lot of stress about when to go and the 30" car ride was torture. with our second we stayed home and it was so, so much more peaceful and much less stressful! good luck with your meeting with the midwives!
post #33 of 42
Originally Posted by Juniperberry View Post
urbancrunchymama - ooh that must have been awful having to wait a whole hour to push!!

I have been thinking all weekend about Shelsi's question.. why not just give birth at home? and to be honest, the more I think about it, the nicer it sounds. I've finally found a small list of mid-wives here and I'm going to contact them today and see what they say about homebirth.

A year ago I would never have considered not going to hospital.. even just for labor. But now, the thought that I could avoid the hospital all together is so calming, and makes me feel good.

So we'll see what these mid=wives say today! thanks so much everyone.
Sounds great! I wish I had done that too. Good luck!
post #34 of 42
Thread Starter 
I met the midwife today and I had along chat with her and her assistant. I am so happy I went to see her. I have taken the decision to go for a home birth and I feel so happy about it. I do know that there is still the possibility of hospital transfer, but I believe I'll be in really safe hands with her. She's had 25 years experience and has worked in lots of different countries.

I have a second appointment with her on Wednesday and she'll leave the birthing equipment here (over here you don't have to buy a kit.. she brings one and the charges you for what you use), so when she arrives she just has to bring the bare necessities.

I'm still amazed at how I've changed my mind and views in teh last month. I went from having a total hospital birth.... to laboring at home and arriving last minute at the hospital... to having a home birth!!

I love reading the threads on this forum... such an amazing group of women. You've all given me alot of strength and courage... thanks everyone
post #35 of 42
yay! I'm so excited for you! :
post #36 of 42
yay! Exciting! Can't wait to read your birth story!

So if you do have to hospital transfer, she can accompany you?

In some states in the US, direct-entry midwifery is illegal. So some HB MWs practice underground & if you have to transfer, you need to say it was UC & the MW can't come along to support you & update an OB on your case.
post #37 of 42
I'm envious, Juniperberry. I really wish I could have done a homebirth. Best wishes and I hope it will be an amazing and blessed experience for all of you. :
post #38 of 42
Thread Starter 
aw thank you

The midwife talked me through the what ifs of hospital transfer and basically if we need to do one it will be to a different hospital than the one I had my son in. Reason being that the one she is in connection with allows the midwife to actually birth the baby. Apparently not all hospitals here allow this... most of them stilll want a gynecologist to actually do the birth and only allow the midwife to hold your hand if you like.. and then only if the gynecologist is ok with it.

I'm happy that over here all options are available.. even if it's not everywhere. I get so mad reading about all the restrictions you guys have to deal with in the States... what happened to freedom of choice?

I can't wait till my next appointment with her! and now I've got all fingers and toes crossed that everything goes well.

The only obstacle I have left is telling my ob/gyn on Monday at my last appointment with her. I hope that goes ok!

thanks again for all the support
post #39 of 42
Yay Juniperberry! :
post #40 of 42
That's great! Why some others who might be reading this thread and not considering a homebirth instead might be because a midwife isn't available to them. I was set on a homebirth, but my state makes direct-entry midwifery illegal, and there are no CNMs who would take me because they are all 2+ hours away. UC isn't for everyone, and with my experience with my first I knew I needed someone experienced there next time. So unfortunately I'll be trying to figure out when to leave for the hospital with this next one too. Luckily, my CNM seems pretty good, so hopefully everything will work out, especially if I stay home long enough.

But basically this country is so messed up that many women who want a safe homebirth with a competent assistant are unable to have that option. It's a terrible shame. Again, homebirth isn't for everyone, but everyone should be able to have that choice!!
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