What kind of "home" do you have for homebirth? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 41 Old 11-18-2002, 11:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Maybe that isn't the right phrasing but.....

DH and I are talking about TTC again, we had Ds in a hospital and it was really a very good experience, but we are both intrested in homebirth, but here is the thing, we live in a small apartment. Did anyone give birth in an apartment, with all the neibors and everything? How big was your house, anything would be helpful. I just can't imagine being all that comfortable since the apartment is small.

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#2 of 41 Old 11-18-2002, 11:49 PM
 
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I have not done a homebirth, but the midwife I talked to the other day said she has done homebirths in apts., student housing and trailers.

So, I say GO FOR IT!
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#3 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 12:34 AM
 
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We're planning a homebirth for our new baby and live in an apartment. It isn't small, really, 1100 sq. ft., but if we had a smaller place we'd still want this - we just wouldn't have invited as many people to celebrate it with us. Really, how much room do you need to birth a baby? (Rhetorical question!) In hospitals they do it quite compactly - if you think about it. :P
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#4 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 02:16 AM
 
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We had Starbaby at home, and we rent the top half of a duplex. It was wonderful! Next door was all surprised I'd had her because it was pretty quick and they didn't notice a thing...but then I delivered her in the bedroom, which is on the other side of the house to them, and when I was pushing I was LOUD! The mum downstairs came home sometime around when I was pushing and heard me bellowing away (err, I mean vocalizing ). She said she just thought 'yep, sounds like she's having the baby,' and didn't mind at all. Later that day all the neighbours came around for champagne and birthday cake, courtesy of dh!

I was worried about our place not being huge, but it SO didn't matter: I didn't even make it to the living room, just the bathroom and the bedroom. I can't imagine what it would have been like actually having to get in a car and make it all the way to the hospital!

A mum up the street just had her new babe at home, in the basement because contractors were putting a new story on their house, so the family was living downstairs while upstairs was a construction zone!

so, go for it
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#5 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 02:30 AM
 
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Tiny two bedroom upstairs apt for our homebirth. It was fine- don't worry about the space issue.
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#6 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 11:31 AM
 
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We just had our baby 11 days ago. We have a 2 bedroom apartment on the bottom floor. As far as I know, the neighbors didn't hear a thing. Then again, we were in our bedroom, which is on the outside corner of the building and doesn't share a wall with the neighbors.

To tell you the truth though, I would have given birth in a closet with the whole world outside the door listening if it would have kept me out of the hospital.
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#7 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 03:53 PM
 
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We have lots of neighbors very nearby, both in our building and in the one nextdoor - our windows even line up pretty well to the next building and it isn't far - but to tell you the truth, I don't care at all if they hear my "birth music." We've heard lots of awful noises far scarier than birthing women. If our neighbors don't care if we hear them swearing at each other, screaming at their kids, playing video games all night, and leaving their car alarms blaring all evening (just a few examples) then I can't see how a little healthy vocalizing will be a big deal around here at least!
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#8 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 05:05 PM
 
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Bonnie was born in our apartment in VA. I actually went out and walked around through most of my labor, because it felt good. And yeah, once things got really rolling it was just the bedroom, the bathroom and the short stretch of hallway between. I expect it would have been the same had we lived in a 12 room mansion. The homebirth thing, for me, is being in MY space where I am comfortable. Size isn't really important. I just recall my midwife asking us to shift the bed a bit (I slept right up close to the wall) and to make sure there was a decent sized surface clear for her to lay out her stuff. Top of the dresser was all she needed.
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#9 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 05:15 PM
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So nobody had *any* problems with neighbors?? We have a party-girl neighbor on the side of the loft where our bedroom is who we have had to complain about repeatedly for noise and waking us up at 3am (loud music and I swear they are horsing around 'cause they hit the wall so hard) and now she won't even speak to us in passing. I just *know* that were we to do a homebirth she would complain about the noise... is there some way that we could get around that? Right now I am planning a birth center birth because of it, but if I don't have to ride in the car in labor I will be a very happy camper...
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#10 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 05:57 PM
 
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Worst case scenario with noise: she calls the cops. I can only imagine that a police officer shows up for a disturbing the peace call and sees a woman in labor is *not* going to do much. Where we live it takes a second call to even get a ticket.
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#11 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 11:15 PM
 
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Plus I just don't think that groans, moans and noises of effort carry in quite the same way as booming bass or video game blasts... It just isn't something we're worried about at this point.
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#12 of 41 Old 11-19-2002, 11:23 PM
 
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Don't let a bitchy neighbour stop you from having the birth you want, where you want. If you are going to have others around, try and have on assertive person who will deal with knocks at the door, whether police (highly unlikely) or the neighbour.

How loud were you the first time? I didn't vocalize at all (or at least not loudly!!!).
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#13 of 41 Old 11-20-2002, 05:12 PM
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Well, we've never called the cops on her, but we have had to complain to the management so many times that at one point they issued her a 10 day cease or vacate notice, which is a permanent black mark on her rental history. We have been apartment dwellers for several years, even had some pretty good parties, and have *never* had a complaint (knock on wood). So I doubt she would call the police, and if she did then oh well! I too doubt that we'd get ticketed, I would just say that things were going too fast to go to the BC and we had to do it here. Seattle's a pretty progressive city... and I think taking my newborn down to the leasing office the next day would clear things up...

I am totally in love with the birthing center, but I would just like it to be an option for me, when I am in labor, to call the MW and say, "come here instead". I have this 'feeling' that this next baby is going to come quick, and I am not going anywhere once I get to about 3cm! we left for the hospital last time at 4cm, and the travel essentially stalled my labor for several hours. When I subtract the time wasted in transit and settling in (3-4 hrs), and the time wasted at the end when the nurse would'nt get my doc to help me with a cervical lip (3 hrs), that makes my 12-hour first-baby labor closer to 5 or 6 (doubt I'll be able to shave much off the 10 minutes it took to push out dd#1). So this time I want to either leave for the BC when I am just starting, or if I wait too long I want to do it here. I guess I just want choices... is that too much for a birthing woman to ask? :

Oh, but ladies, the BC has a *jacuzzi tub*!!! and we don't!!!
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#14 of 41 Old 11-21-2002, 01:59 AM
 
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In the book that my homebirth doctor wrote,( Dr. Ettinghausen), it said that he delivered a child in a tent one time on an open lot around a camp fire.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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#15 of 41 Old 11-21-2002, 02:04 AM
 
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This thread makes me remember one person's take on the Christmas story one time. I think it was Paul Harvey one Christmas was retelling the Christmas story from the view point of the couple checking in to the inn, but "being great with child", it was an act of kindness to put her out and away from the ears of the crowded inn where she could birth her babe in a warm place that was also quiet and private.

Sorry about the O.T., but I just wanted to share.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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#16 of 41 Old 11-21-2002, 10:46 AM
 
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Cool applejuice- I hadn't ever thought of it that way!! WOW!
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#17 of 41 Old 11-21-2002, 10:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Very true applejuice.

I guess I'm concerned that I will feel cramped. With Dh, ds, a support person for ds, midwife and probably an assistant, we'll be bumping into each other. Also our tub is small, we could inflate a tub in the living room.

I was basically quiet during labor, some low moans such, but pushing was totally different. I was screaming my head off. I guess I should relax our "wallmates" are loud all the time this would be just one day.

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#18 of 41 Old 11-22-2002, 11:03 PM
 
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Anywhere a woman lives is a place for a homebirth! Get yourself a copy of Spiritual Midwife by Ina May Gaskin (editor of Midwifery Today) and read about the births in buses and be inspired!! Nest and make your home all cozy and warm. Get out your candles, music, and plan a lovely birth!
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#19 of 41 Old 11-22-2002, 11:06 PM
 
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I meant to add that I have a whole house, but I gave birth to my last baby on the floor of the kids bathroom. It's a small bathroom, but it was perfect. The humidity from the hot water in the tub made it very cozy and warm. I can't imagine a cold & big hospital room would have been anything less than yucky.
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#20 of 41 Old 11-22-2002, 11:09 PM
 
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I agree Uumom.

Any where a woman feels comfortable and safe to birth her babe is the right place.

Like everything, you have to plan intelligently.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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#21 of 41 Old 11-22-2002, 11:19 PM
 
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I realize too, that Xiola's mum is looking at a nice birthing center, and not a big old cold hospital room, so sorry for my egocentric view of things. I have never had a babe in a hospital so I am terribly biased towards being at home and all cozy. But I know a birth center can be lovely, I just can't imagine going anywhere while in labor and I can't imgaine having to leave my cozy bed to pack my newborn nursling in a carseat, drive in a car and go home. Homebirths are just so...homey. lol Mine were blessed and I am beyond thankful. Good luck with your decision!
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#22 of 41 Old 11-22-2002, 11:38 PM
 
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we have a one bedroom apt in a ranch style condo complex.
the guys downstairs said they didn't here me.
also most people are understanding and know you wont be making a lot of noise on a reg basis
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#23 of 41 Old 11-23-2002, 10:53 AM
 
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I had four home births.

I could not imagine anything else.

I want to add to this thread something alittle off topic, but when my dh and I sold a home that I had birthed in, I felt VERY SAD! Depressed even. I then realized that I had bonded not only w/ my beautiful offspring, but with the home as well.

This made me realize why some women who may have the time, may do LOADS of volunteer work in a hospital or hospital charity when their children were born there.

The Mothering webpage a few weeks ago had a short article about concepts of time "chronos" chronological time and "kraonos" a unique moment of time in which something happens which has never happened before and will never happen again.

My "homes", in which I had birthed, had a sense of Kraonos.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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#24 of 41 Old 11-23-2002, 11:31 AM
 
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*
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#25 of 41 Old 11-26-2002, 02:03 AM
 
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Applejuice, I think it is so sweet that you became so attached to the house where you birthed your babies! I can relate a little bit even though our situations are totally different! I had dd1 in a hospital, by C section at 34.5 weeks gestation. She was in the NICU for a day and a half and in the special care nursery for the remainder of the 5 days before they "allowed" her to come home. It was a completely disappointing and shocking end to her pregnancy, pretty much the opposite of the birth I had hoped for. We had planned to be at a very small, community hospital near our home but were sent to the big hospital in a nearby city because we weren't 35 weeks yet. Anyway, I really felt attached to that big hospital for a while. When I returned the breast pump we rented for the first month (didn't end up using it much but seemed like a good idea at the time) I took Cymbre back to the NICU and the nursery to "show" my one month old baby where we'd been together. I actually went there several times with her to retrace our steps... and the saddest thing about it was that the connection that you speak of with your old house - well, of course, it just wasn't there for me at the hospital. It does make me sad that we plan to have this baby in our little apartment and we plan to move when the baby is just 3 months old or so. But I know that connection is more than just a place. And with Cymbre's birth, I was searching for something I will never find, something I'll never get back - the first day of her life when I saw her only twice, and briefly at that. The fact that although she was born, I did not birth her. How the policies and red tape of the hospital went right over my head and behind my back in caring for my child THEIR way and wouldn't even give me a straight answer about her - even though she was JUST FINE! What happened to us is something that I'll surely be sorting out for years to come.

Sorry to rant and vent so long - what I mean to say is that it makes me SO happy that there are people like you, applejuice, and so many of you other mamas, who are having birth experiences that you can look back on wistfully. I have been so excited about planning a homebirth for this new baby and now that it is getting so close (only nine weeks, give or take) I realize that I am so very scared that our plans will go down the toitey again. I long deeply for the first day of Cymbre's life and all the time she spent in her "box" instead of in my arms in those first days.

So I am praying that this little baby will come to us at home, as planned. And even if we won't live here forever, and even if it isn't huge and the kitchen cabinets look like they were cut out with a chainsaw - there is no place I would rather welcome my baby than here - in MY place into MY arms surrounded only by people who love us. It occurs to me that it might just be hard for me to let this baby go for those first days... I hope everyone who is coming to our birth will understand that!
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#26 of 41 Old 11-26-2002, 02:25 AM
 
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Hi SerenityScott and applejuice -- this is a major digression, but your comments really resonate with me. We will be moving in the spring from this city, and from the warm, wonderful home where Starbaby was born (and we were married on the front steps, when I was 7 months pregnant!). It is really heart-wrenching, and I actually had a nightmare a while back, about begging the landlords to let us choose the new tenants!! I hope they are kind to the little fig tree we planted in the backyard for her first birthday, and that they care for the home as we have. I'm such a control freak...but I want to take her back here one day when she's older, and show her where she was born. I want her to see it as the happy, cozy home it was when she lived in it, and to be able to remember it that way myself.

Getting all maudlin now, AND I hijacked a thread! Apologies...
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#27 of 41 Old 11-26-2002, 07:17 AM
 
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TO: Serenityscott and mammascott -

The home in which dd and ds#1 were born is up for sale and I always hoped they would be old and prosperous enough to buy it themselves.

I guess you can't have everything.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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#28 of 41 Old 11-26-2002, 08:16 AM
 
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I've never homebirthed myself, but I can't imagine anyone feeling else than awestruck when "witnessing" (and hearing is witnessing) a baby being born next door.

And people who wouldn't feel like that are really not worth worrying about. I say, go for it!
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#29 of 41 Old 11-26-2002, 12:35 PM
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Hmmm... well, if I progress faster then expected, I won't hesitate to have my midwife come here then! I honestly can't say how loud I was... I vocalized a lot last time but kept it pretty low. I guess Party Girl can cope... and who knows, she may be partying over there and not hear us anyway:

But the birth center has a *jacuzzi tub*! We'll see how it goes

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#30 of 41 Old 11-26-2002, 01:05 PM
 
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I just thought I'd share my story (so far). I wanted a birthing center birth because I though dh would never go for home birth. After being sent to collection for my dd's hospital birth TWO YEARS ago when the insurance was supposed to cover me 100% I put my foot down. Home birth it is!

The birthing center would have been a great option, but it was 1 1/2 hours away! All the driving and it would have cost us $1900 (our max out of pocket costs). The homebirth is going to cost us about $1350 (midwife fees are $1250 for care from 20wks on, birthing pool is $40, birthing kit is $30 and air pump for pool is $22). I'm going to have to work until about 32 week so we can pay for it more easily, but it will be so worth it! And you never know, I can pray that perhaps Anthem will reimburse us!

A birthing center birth sounds great, but I love the idea of not having to leave the house until I'm ready AFTER the birth!

Our house is very small. We'll hvae to push the dining room table against the wall and if anyone wants to get to another area of the house, they'll have to walk around the pool. I'll be more than comfortable though- it's my house!
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