Planning a home birth but starting to get extremely nervous - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 10-28-2013, 05:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well I think the title sums it up, but my husband and I have been planning to have a home birth since before we were expecting and found a midwife we really like fairly quickly after finding out I was pregnant.

I am now 27 weeks pregnant and I am just starting to get so extremely nervous about it though. I know that a home birth is what I want, but I can't help feeling terrified that something could go wrong, I or my baby could die...and if something happened to her I don't know if I could live with myself.

I don't really know what I am asking here I guess I just wonder if anyone has felt this way and how did you handle it, what would you do...ect.

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#2 of 20 Old 10-30-2013, 11:32 PM
 
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What sorts of things are you concerned about? Have you talked to your midwife about how she handles specific emergencies, reasons for transport, etc?


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#3 of 20 Old 10-31-2013, 01:45 PM
 
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I would also recommend talking through some of your fears with your midwife. Our appointments are often like therapy sessions for my husband and me!

 

Also, I've found Ina May's Guide to Childbirth to be extremely helpful, especially the first part. That part is all stories of births from moms who delivered at home, The Farm birthing center, and a few who delivered in hospitals. I find myself pausing during these stories and envisioning my birth, what I want, and how I would react to the situations these women are in. It's so helpful!

 

Good luck mama!

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#4 of 20 Old 10-31-2013, 06:07 PM
 
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That's how I felt my first time around and I ended up transferring to hospital where they hurt me and the baby. For months after I'd feel so badly that I went to the hospital for nothing and put my baby and I at risk. I still feel that going there when it wasn't necessary is the biggest mistake I've made as a mother and it wouldn't have been violent and my baby wouldn't have been so stressed and covered in mecominum of it wasn't for that mistake. I'm 23 weeks pregnant now and I know that hospitals save lives and I would definitely go there if there was an issue but I would never again go there if there's nothing wrong. It's safer at home unless something goes wrong,
IMO
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#5 of 20 Old 10-31-2013, 06:10 PM
 
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Of you can drive there in 20 minutes you're fine. When there was an "emergency" in my case (which they created) it took them 30 minutes to prep, which I think is pretty standard. So as long as you can get there relatively fast and your mw calls it in you are no further ahead by being there
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#6 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 02:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Of you can drive there in 20 minutes you're fine. When there was an "emergency" in my case (which they created) it took them 30 minutes to prep, which I think is pretty standard. So as long as you can get there relatively fast and your mw calls it in you are no further ahead by being there

We can actually be there in 5 minutes or less. I always here about OBs who of course aren't exactly supportive saying things like "If anything goes wrong you only have five minutes to get the baby out...." ect. And I always think is that possible even in a hospital??

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What sorts of things are you concerned about? Have you talked to your midwife about how she handles specific emergencies, reasons for transport, etc?

Uhm specifically I do not know I am just a worrier. I am planning to bring it up to her at out next appointment, I know pretty much her protocols but I'm sure talking it out will help. She's been great thus far. 

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#7 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 02:56 PM
 
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We can actually be there in 5 minutes or less. I always here about OBs who of course aren't exactly supportive saying things like "If anything goes wrong you only have five minutes to get the baby out...." ect. And I always think is that possible even in a hospital??

 

 

They can have a baby out in less than 5 minutes once you are on the operating table and prepped for surgery. It generally takes at least 30 minutes for that to happen.


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#8 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 03:20 PM - Thread Starter
 
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They can have a baby out in less than 5 minutes once you are on the operating table and prepped for surgery. It generally takes at least 30 minutes for that to happen.

That makes a lot more sense to me...so basically the 5 minutes talk is fear mongering 

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#9 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 08:50 PM
 
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Yeah they can't prep for surgery and have a baby out in five minutes without defying the laws of time or throwing all caution out the window
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#10 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 09:34 PM
 
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I would also tour your backup hospital and get to know their policies and how they deal with transfers. You may find it reassuring to see the space and demystify it all.

However, this will only work if they are HB friendly. If not, they will just scare you probably.

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#11 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 09:56 PM
 
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Slap and dash c-section can happen in 10 minutes. However, the whole point of monitoring is to avoid that and have time for proper prep etc.

 

I believe that anxiety is way of you body telling you something. If you are worried, get a second opinion.  There hospitals that are friendly to natural birth as well

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#12 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 10:04 PM
 
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Yeah they can't prep for surgery and have a baby out in five minutes without defying the laws of time or throwing all caution out the window

In an absolutely emergent situation with the mom under general anesthesia this absolutely can happen.
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#13 of 20 Old 11-01-2013, 10:08 PM
 
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It depends on a lot of factors.  If the hospital has 24h anesthesiology, a stat c-section will happen faster than a hospital that has on-call anesthesia.  Are all the operating rooms in use or not?  Is there an OR prepped now or not?  Can the mother be safely put under general or will her airway be compromised?  Yes, there are stat c-sections where it has taken 6 minutes or less - usually in larger, better equipped hospitals.   Between 20 and 30 minutes is the standard time for decision to incision for a stat c-section. Remember that it takes time to ready the mother even if the OR is prepped ahead of time, so there will always be a further delay if you are transporting than if you are already in the hospital.  You will almost never be able to come in the door and have a c-section immediately, even if someone has called ahead because at the very least, you will usually be triaged, there will have to be a diagnosis, and you will have to be prepped.  You may have to go upstairs in an elevator.  There may be an ultrasound so the surgeon can safely visualize the baby.  Everything takes time.

 

Transporting in late labor - expect everything to take triple the amount of time it normally takes.  This is where your midwife's skill and readiness really matters, both in predicting major crises and transporting before something minor becomes major, and because in a crisis pre-hospital care can make all the difference between a happy outcome and a tragic one.   It actually might be a good idea, to set your mind at ease, to talk to an OB at the hospital to find out what the procedure is for a home birth transfer on their end, and then with your midwife to find out her procedure.  It might be much faster than what I have described or much slower.  You should have this information either way.


The absolute risk of these types of "every minute counts" emergencies is very low, but you do take on some additional risk the further away from the hospital you are, because unfortunately if it is that serious, the impact of those few extra minutes can be incredibly high.  

 

I live 2 minutes from my hospital and 7 minutes, with traffic, from the one with the NICU and the better ER.  I experienced a precipitous birth at home.  I was healthy and low risk and in fact on my way to the hospital to be checked.  My water broke and I couldn't walk down the stairs so we called 911, they arrived promptly, but as my daughter was crowning.  She had a complication around the time we called 911.  They were not able to transport me or my baby until she had finished being born.  It took 40 minutes to get to the hospital from the time my water broke/we called 911, and she was transported within moments of birth - they had her in the ER, met by a NICU team, within 8 minutes.  It wasn't fast enough.  If my water had broken two minutes later, I would have been in my car and at the door of my hospital, and my daughter might be alive today - because she could have had help getting out faster, and she would have had immediate respiratory assistance and a faster transfusion.  It is rare, but these kinds of things do happen, and when they happen minutes count.  For my daughter's complication the number one predictor of death is where it happens - in or out of the hospital.  

Again, I'm not saying this is a reason not to have a home birth.  You eliminate a majority of risk just by having good screening and a cautious midwife.  But it's real - complications happen, and babies die... sometimes being two minutes away might as well be an hour.  And yes they even die in hospitals, because childbirth is dangerous sometimes.  There are no guarantees.  It's not fear mongering, I promise.  You don't want to find out this sort of thing is possible the way I did.

 

Ultimately, though, the best way to make your decision is based on good information about your midwife and your hospital, your health history, your baby, and your own personal feelings of risk, and your needs in the birth, and not on my speculations or anyone else's about how quick a hospital transfer can be.  Hospitals do save lives, but you have to get there in time.


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#14 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 09:23 AM
 
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Cyclamen. I am so very sorry. Hugs.

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#15 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 10:11 AM
 
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Cyclamen. I am so very sorry. Hugs.

 

Thank you.  She's on my mind a lot today.


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#16 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 02:43 PM
 
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If it's not specific concerns but rather just general nervousness, have you looked into Hypnobabies? They have some great positive "affirmation" tracks that you listen to once or twice a day while relaxing to help you have faith in your body and the birth process. Just thought I would suggest that as it can help you feel more calm about the big event.

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#17 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 05:19 PM
 
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In an absolutely emergent situation with the mom under general anesthesia this absolutely can happen.
If the mom is under GA then there has already been considerable prep done. Getting the anesthesiologist there also takes time, someone could get lucky and have one right there but just last year a baby died at our local hospital while the mom waited 45 minutes for the GA.

It's probably possible in some theoretical world that all these things could line up and facilitate a proper job in record time, but it's highly unlikley
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#18 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 05:25 PM
 
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I agree with other posters that you have to make this decision for yourself. Probably it will be a mich easier decision if you have more children.
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#19 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 05:48 PM
 
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If the mom is under GA then there has already been considerable prep done. Getting the anesthesiologist there also takes time, someone could get lucky and have one right there but just last year a baby died at our local hospital while the mom waited 45 minutes for the GA.

It's probably possible in some theoretical world that all these things could line up and facilitate a proper job in record time, but it's highly unlikley

And that is definitely something to consider when looking at hospitals. Our local hospitals all have anesthesia in house 24/7 so an emergent (true life or death situation which is thankfully rare) can happen in a matter of minutes. A small community hospital may not be equipped to make this happen that quickly but it would be a situation that one could be aware of with a phone call to a hospital to inquire about anesthesia staffing. Hospitals that are trauma rated and contain a high level NICU are most likely prepared for this kind of scenario.
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#20 of 20 Old 11-02-2013, 05:50 PM
 
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At our hospital we have pre check in for hb,
Which means that the mw calls the hospital when you go into labour and you r checked in over the phone. But it is true that it must take a couple of extra minutes to prep a mom who's transferring in compared to one who isn't. So if everything else is ready to go and mom is what they're waiting on then it could be a couple minute difference, which is highly unlikely to matter but can matter unfortunately. There are also risks to giving birth in a hospital that aren't there at home, which is why hb is safer for low risk women. It's such a hard decision, unless it isnt
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