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#1 of 45 Old 02-02-2010, 06:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This is a question for those of you who had wonderful home birth experiences - what was it that made it so wonderful for you?
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#2 of 45 Old 02-02-2010, 06:38 PM
 
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Being able to roll over and take a nap in my own bed with my husband and new daughter.

Jen, former sys admin and current geek , wife to DH , SAHM and Montessori homeschool teacher to DD "Nugget" (05/07) and new arrival DS "Sprout" (03/31/10)
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#3 of 45 Old 02-02-2010, 09:56 PM
 
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It was so calm and gentle and peaceful -- music playing softly, water lapping against the side of the tub, everyone whispering and respecting the birth space. It really helped me to get in the zone and have a very easy birth with almost no real pain.
That's one of the things that made it such a beautiful experience emotionally. Of course, I had many more pragmatic concerns like avoiding hospital interventions, yada yada.

Jen, journalist, policy wonk, and formerly a proud single mama to my sweet little man Cyrus, born at home Dec. 2007 . Now married to my Incredibly Nice Guy and new mama to baby Arthur.
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#4 of 45 Old 02-02-2010, 10:20 PM
 
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Simply being at home. It was an empowering family moment for me. And it was more special because there were no 'unnecessaries', like a car ride, or nurses, or forms to fill out.

It was just life continuing in the great circle right in my own livingroom.
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#5 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 12:13 AM
 
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Giving in to my body and watching the beauty unfold without messing with it. Getting in tune with myself, trusting myself and following my instincts. Never having anyone else's hands inside me or touching my vagina. Never knowing numbers for how dilated my cervix was and instead knowing that my body would push when it was ready. Never doubting the miracle. Just me, my body and my baby and the heightened sense of feeling exactly what was going on but without a lot of pain. Instinctively reaching down and applying pressure where needed and feeling my baby's head descend into the palm of my own hand and then being born into my own hand with no one else's hands around. There is no other feeling in the world like that. Feeling my body change positions without any control of my own and just going with it. Reaching down and pulling my baby from the water and holding him against my chest as he takes his first breath. Me and him. Him and me. Staring into each other's eyes. Never being separated until we were ready. Staying connected for over an hour. Staying in the birth pool for over an hour, nice and warm. Spending our first hours, night and days together as a family without any strangers coming and going. Being pampered by the ones that love me, friends and family. The normalcy of it all.

The fast recovery and the fact that I didn't tear despite all odds was a nice bonus as well.
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#6 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 12:16 AM
 
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being the one in charge of my birth, not having strange people walking in and out of my birth environment, and not having to travel while in labor nor after the birth. we loved our homebirth and midwife so much, we did it again the second time around!
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#7 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 01:18 AM
 
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Having the opportunity to trust my body, and having it work perfectly.

The normality of the birth - there was some chaos as it was a precipitous unplanned UC (our midwife arrived 5 minutes after the birth) - but it happened in my own home like we planned, without any outside help, and life just continued right around us.

I love being able to joke with Fiona, saying, "Now, being born in the bathroom does not give you unlimited access.. sometimes Mommy wants to pee by herself!" and it just sounds totally normal.

-Rachel
Mommy to Colwyn, 10/03 ~ Lachlann, 8/05 ~ Fiona, 6/08 ~ Niall, 5/10
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#8 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 01:24 AM
 
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EVERYTHING! It was our birth, our home, our invited people ONLY. No scary smells or sounds, no pressure, no fear, no needles, just me, my son, dh, sister like midwife, and my dogs in my room and the tub. I got to jam out to panic with the midwife and have fresh roast as soon as I was done and strawberries from the garden. I love how whenever I take a shower or give the boys a bath in my room I have that memory. It is wonderful to have that. It will be the only reason it will be hard to leave this house when we move.

Living DAIRY AND GLUTEN FREE for my SPD and Aspergers Little Man.
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#9 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 03:22 AM
 
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Reaching inside and feeling the top of his head as he was descending through the birth canal. Totally amazing.

Momma to DD (12/04) hearts.gif and DS (11/09) hbac.gif.
I survived 16 mos! Ask me about breastfeeding a baby with posterior tongue tie, high palate, and weak oral motor skills- whew!

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#10 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 03:45 AM
 
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being able to get in my normal sized bed, hospital beds are always too short.Not being bugged about bathing and shots and vitality checks and keeping a nursing log.Things were focused on me rather than a timeline and a monitor that kept moving because the baby was coming so fast.My labors are fast so it was nice not having to deal with getting in and out of the car and filling out still more forms and trying to convince them that yes I am in labor.My kids were able to come in and see the baby right away, something that I'm sure wouldn't be allowed nowadays.I could eat as soon as I wanted to and exactly what I wanted rather than hoping that someone would respond to the call button and the kitchen should be open.The peace.

joy.gifme, herding 5 critters a cat and a dog. DS 11/01, DS 10/04, DD 2/06, DS 5/07 and DD 9/10

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#11 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 03:48 AM
 
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Being able to be loud, naked, comfortable. The herbal bath following birth was really nice, and then my midwife took time to carefully dry me off so I wouldn't have to bend, etc. Having only the people we knew and loved with us, having time to do what I wanted, without pressure from anyone, being able to figure things out and surrender to the process in my time, crying, and really getting to a place of understanding in my core that I could do it, I was made for this.
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#12 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 12:49 PM
 
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SO many things were great about it, but I was surprised that this mattered to me: not having to take a car ride, or even think about how far along my labor was in order to plan that car ride, was amazing. I never kept track of my contractions, which helped the time go by so much faster. I just kept calling my doula, who made judgments about when to call the miwife herself, without involving me in the whole timing thing. Th lack of pressure to perform was great.
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#13 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 07:23 PM
 
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Everything really, but especially:

-No car-ride, everyone came to me
-Feeling in control
-Knowing where everything was; food, blankets etc.
-Comfortable . . . well as comfortable as labor can be!
-Gave birth where I wanted to, turned out it was in a kiddy pool on my porch

I wouldn't give up the opportunity to give birth at home for anything!

Totally in love with my mountain man husband, and deeply fallen for my baby bird Gemma (8/09) and a new bird joining the nest this spring!
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#14 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 08:34 PM
 
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Quiet and the no rush feeling. Birthing in the tub. Being able to crawl into my own bed and be waited on. Noone coming in to wash the floor or empty garbage pails.

 Mom of many minions . . . babyf.gif jumpers.gif     jumpers.gif     jumpers.gif
"And when our baby stirs and struggles to be born it compels humility: what we began is now its own." Margaret Mead 
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#15 of 45 Old 02-03-2010, 09:03 PM
 
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Wow, what a question.

Everything.

And this is from someone who never thought I would consider a home birth.

Some of the highlights:

- going for a walk in my neighborhood with my mom, a midwife student, husband and dog to work through contractions
- being able to keep my energy up with juice, fruit, honey, and sublingual B vitamins
- when I was having trouble getting anywhere, it was recommended I push on the toilet...if I had been anywhere other than home, I would have been obsessing about being on someone else's toilet
- when it was over, being able to get in my own cozy bed and fall asleep with my husband and baby...no drive home, no scratchy hospital sheets
- knowing that my body was able to do something so incredible without drugs or much assistance, so empowering

My active labor was 26 hours long, so being that I hate being in a hospital if I don't have to be, I think I would have gone nuts if I had been there that long.
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#16 of 45 Old 02-06-2010, 02:37 AM
 
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Amazing to me was how normal it felt. I just loved that it was *our* space, our terms. We never had to go anywhere. I felt "tended to" by my wonderful midwife and her student at the time. It was magical.

Bilingual mama to DS J 6/4/06 and new DS C 9/27/10  homebirth.jpg
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#17 of 45 Old 02-06-2010, 02:53 PM
 
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Being able to turn my brain off 100% because I didn't need to worry about where I was in labor or what anyone else was going to do or any other of the 100 things I worried about in the hospital.

Mama, homeschooler, midwife. DD (13yo), DS (11yo), DD (8yo), DD (3yo), somebody new coming in November 2013.

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#18 of 45 Old 02-06-2010, 05:10 PM
 
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Thanks for this beautiful thread! I'm planning a homebirth in April and all your wonderful comments are really inspiring! Keep them coming!

SAHM to two amazing boys
8-21-05
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#19 of 45 Old 02-06-2010, 05:35 PM
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My daughter! and her gentle arrival under water and into her daddys arms!
Sharing the moment with her 3 older siblings and not missing them for one moment in the next few days.
Having my own comfort food!
Not missing DH who did not have to split his time between home and the hospy.

wbg...constantly amazed by Z , cherishing I , inspired by P , adoring K and still getting butterflies when I wake up with B !
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#20 of 45 Old 02-07-2010, 12:59 AM
 
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I smiled when I read this thread title, because it reminded me of something I wrote shortly after my first homebirth:

"The most astonishing thing about this whole homebirth experience is that it feels so normal. When people comment on "how brave" or "how strong" I must be to have had a homebirth, I am surprised and embarrassed, because I don't feel brave or strong. I don't feel deserving of such accolades. To be honest, I thought I would deserve it--I thought I was in for a life-altering, paradigm-shifting event! Of course, motherhood itself is life-changing, but I expected to be somehow fundamentally changed through homebirth. I guess I thought that I would feel different from other mothers, with their "ordinary" hospital births. Instead, I've come to realize that birth is ordinary. It's not scary or risky or technical. It is certainly not a medical event. It is just a simple part of life, unspectacular and ordinary. But--and this is the secret, I think, to homebirth--realizing that it is ordinary is exactly what makes it sublime."

Sarah, Queen of Hearts, raising a Full House with Michael, King of my Heart!
DS (2/02), DD (3/04), DS (1/06), DD (12/07), and DS (3/10)
~~*~~Not your typical Pastor's Wife!~~*~~
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#21 of 45 Old 02-07-2010, 02:16 AM
 
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That my baby and I were treated with such incredible gentleness and respect

Mama to DS (6/07) h20homebirth.gif, DD (6/09) h20homebirth.gif, and DD (07/12) homebirth.jpg..

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#22 of 45 Old 02-07-2010, 03:50 AM
 
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Being surrounded by love.

No pressure. No intervention. It was up to me, and those whom I appointed to speak for me when I could not speak for myself.

I was not at the mercy of machines. There was nothing saying I could not have a piece of chicken or a bowl of cereal, had I wanted it. I drank water. I listened to music. I peed when I needed to. I held the hands of the ones I loved. I laid my head on their shoulders. I had the supreme joy of knowing the best friend I'd ever known was the first to hold my child as she (and he) slipped from my body.

There was respect. There was peace. There was cooperation. There was my soft pillow to sleep on when it was done. There was my baby without any needle-pricks or separations. The baby was connected to me until I said it was okay to cut the cord.

Homebirth is an experience I would not trade for the world.

)O(   Far-away Mama to: Pooka (16)...Alex (14)...Mickie-Lamb (13)...Solo Mama to: Punkin' Seed (8)...Tootsie Pop (6)...Lil' Man (3) and a yikes2.gif due February 2012

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#23 of 45 Old 02-07-2010, 11:53 AM
 
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Oh, thank you for this thread/exercise! I've never had a baby in the hospital and have been blessed to live in an area with legal birthing options and excellent midwives. It's good to think about this so I don't take these blessings for granted!

1. The biggest factor was the implicit trust that I had in my care team--midwives, student, doula, DH--which allowed me to surrender completely to the birth and retain unrelenting focus on getting my baby out! I did not have to stand on guard saying, "What's that sharp thing for? What did you just put in my IV? What do you mean I 'have' to strap that thing on?"

2. The only "protocols" that I had to think about were the ones that I set in my own home. Nobody spoke to me about what was "allowed" or what they would "let" me do. They could completely pamper me. I remember the occasional voice in my ear: "Would you like me to make you another smoothie? Or are you doing OK?"

3. Falling asleep in my own bed with the family when it was over . . . then waking up to a SPOTLESS house. Are midwives required to work as hotel maids before they get certified?

In God we trust; all others must show data. selectivevax.gifsurf.gifteapot2.GIFintactivist.gif
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#24 of 45 Old 02-07-2010, 09:54 PM
 
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Not having to worry about timing or traveling in the car during labor. My first labor, a hospital birth was 41 hours. My second, a homebirth, was 3 hours and 15 minutes. When I felt like pushing with my first they said, no you are only at 9.5 cm you can't push yet. And then much later, ok, well try but you might damage your cervix (just what I needed to hear to really try...). At the SAME point in my second labor, I got the same feeling and was so scared to go through that again. When I told my midwife (she had just arrived and hadn't checked me at all) she said in a loud voice, "well push woman, push" I was nearly crying in relief and DD2 was out very quickly after that!

It was fast and quick and overpowering. I was lost in the moment which never happened at the hospital. My DD2 didn't cry at birth just made a few noises to say hello and latched on. Then my own mom and DD1 held her and stroked her while my midwife and DH cleaned me up. Then we all crawled into bed together

The best part of it all - DD2 was 10 lbs 15 ounces! I would have been a mandatated C-section and instead she was born in our bathroom tub in just over 3 hours. She is ALWAYS calm when we are in the tub together now

, , , , , to DD1 (4.5 years old) and DD2 (7 months) and 2
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#25 of 45 Old 02-07-2010, 10:17 PM
 
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Loved that I didn't have to think about getting in the car in labor, but what I liked the best was not having life punctuated with a hospital visit/stay. We didn't have to figure out who would take our daughter for the day or several days while I was in the hospital. I don't sleep well anywhere but my own bed, so when I was in the hospital when I had my daughter, I barely slept... not really a good start to motherhood! It was just such a ... smooth transition for us. We didn't have to pack anything up or unpack anything when we came home, the whole hospital routine. As I said, our lives weren't, sort of, punctuated with this stay outside the home... life just went on and it felt so organic being able to incorporate baby into our daily "normal" routine, sort of. The day after he was born just felt like a "normal" saturday (b/c dh was home - it was actually a thursday, I think), and we hung out like we normally did on saturday mornings, except I was nursing/holding the little guy instead of being still pregnant.

Not sure if I'm really explaining this well... it just made a wonderfully smooth transition to having a second child, I guess. Hoping this one goes as smoothly!

Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise idea.gif  (1/06), Oliver Matthew  blahblah.gif (7/07) and Avery Michael fly-by-nursing1.gif(3/10)

 

dizzy.gif Wading slowly and nervously into this homeschooling thing.

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#26 of 45 Old 02-08-2010, 03:24 PM
 
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For me, it was the moment when DD came into the world and I reached down and scooped her into my own hands, and rested her on my belly. All that hard work, all that pain -- this was what it was for. This is what it was all about. The laughter, the tears, and the happiness that flooded the room -- it was absolutely amazing to think about what I had just done.

And it was mine and my husband's to own. Nobody to intrude on that moment, nobody to doubt us or judge. Nobody to really witness it. It was our event.

Carrie SAHM to Nora Caitlyn (5) and Finnley Dax (2) homebirthing, breastfeeding, babywearing, intactivist, doula mama!         
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#27 of 45 Old 02-08-2010, 05:38 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by naupakamama View Post
When I told my midwife (she had just arrived and hadn't checked me at all) she said in a loud voice, "well push woman, push"
Another thing I loved about homebirth was the elimination of the nurses telling you when, how and how long to push.

"Wait, wait, you're not quite to 10 cm!"

"Okay, push into your bottom, like you're having a bowel movement!" (oh to equivocate having a child to taking a sh@t)

"Now, push when I count... 1... 2... 3... [all the way to ten].. now, deep breath and let's go again, 1.. 2.. 3..[repeat three times]... alright, now rest a moment. [Even if you feel like still pushing, at this time the nurse is not only pushing your legs back to the vicinity of your ears, she is staring intently at the monitor because, of course, the machine dictates your body's needs ].)

And my favorite, when I was in labor with my first, the doctor said, "Now darlin, I need you to not push, no matter what. Don't care what you feel like, since you shouldn't feel anything, but I have to go on a smoke break. So you just hang tight, and I will be back in about ten."

(The nurse, with a totally disgusted look on her face, delivered my daughter. I'd already had a completely enormous and unnecessary episiotomy, and my baby was all but falling out of me. She pulled up a stool when he walked out and sat down, then said, "Honey, this ain't gonna work. You push now, only one should do it, and we gonna get this little one born." Seriously, even WITH an epidural, you try NOT pushing when all the muscles in your uterus are saying go-for-it.)

With my last homebirth, the pain was BAD and the only thing that made it feel better was pushing. That is a totally instinctive feeling. You bear down and it is worlds better. The MW said I was only 5 cm, but oddly enough the babe was born 17 minutes later, so apparently my body knew exactly what it was doing.

)O(   Far-away Mama to: Pooka (16)...Alex (14)...Mickie-Lamb (13)...Solo Mama to: Punkin' Seed (8)...Tootsie Pop (6)...Lil' Man (3) and a yikes2.gif due February 2012

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#28 of 45 Old 03-09-2010, 10:44 PM
 
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Just wanted to say thank you to everybody who replied to this thread. I am 12 weeks into my second pregnancy and looking forward to my first home birth. I started tearing up at some points just thinking about how excited I am to experience a similar situation, and thinking about how amazing it was to hold my son for the first time.

Thank you so much!
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#29 of 45 Old 03-10-2010, 01:59 PM
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Knowing my baby was safe with his daddy afterwards and no one was going to mess with him. I got to take shower, get dressed, and eat dinner, without worrying about him.
Then, sleeping that night in my own bed with my husband, my toddler, and my new baby.
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#30 of 45 Old 03-10-2010, 02:15 PM
 
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Yeah, it felt really normal. Hospitals cause me such anxiety, that i think it would not have felt normal and comfortable there.

I liked being in my house with only people that I love and have the utmost respect for. DH and my mother were there. My mother started out not okay with HB, but she had the decency to hold her tongue. She came around about the time I started pushing and I think she is a convert. She got to see her first two grandchildren being born. The MW and her two assistants were here. I had come to know them and think them absolutely wonderful women in the 5 months before the birth.

I am thankful for not having had a c-section. I would have almost been guaranteed one in the hospital. I interacted with several groups of OBs and CNMs along the way. It is almost standard with twins to get a c/s in this part of the country. And Baby B was breech. They would have cut me open so fast! The irony is that she was so easy to deliver after Baby A. It appalls me to think that I would have had a c/s without a second thought when vaginal delivery was so easy.
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