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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know that I can waterbirth at home, but my husband is nervous about that so I've been trying to find a birthing center with a waterbirth option. In Monterey county, you can't waterbirth in a hospital, only at home. But in Santa Cruz the birthing center has jacuzzi tubs to birth in. Santa Cruz is 35 miles away, and at least 45-55 minutes away.

This is my first birth. Am I naive to think that I can make it 45 minutes in labor? Will I still be relaxed? Experienced mamas please help! There aren't any birthing centers that I have found in my county, nor can midwives deliver in hospitals here. I already know in my heart that I want to waterbirth, I just need some reassurance that I'm not crazy to want to be in a car when I'm in labor. Thanks!
 

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There are always women who birth a baby after an extremely short labor (less than an hour)--and some of them are even first-timers. But, I think that the likelihood of that happening is very low. If I were you and in your sitiation (as described) I'd go ahead and plan to drive to the waterbirth. I would just go when I was fairly sure that things were moving along, but not labor at home for any amount of time. Talking to the midwives that work at the birthing center should give you a good idea of what they would expect and be comfortable with--and they'd sure know more than me! But I'd at least check into it.
 

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I couldn't do it (drive to the birth center, that is). For most people I know, the drive to the birth place is the most excruciating part of labor. My birth center was 10 mn away, and it was horrible.

If it makes your DH feel any better, there is nothing at a birth center that a qualified midwife would not bring with her to your home. Oxygen, emergency rescusitation equipment and meds, etc.
 

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Okay- you asked...
I'd work on DH to stay home. We had a homebirth (waterbirth) and LOVED it. No way you could have gotten me in a car. My labor was long (31.5 hours) so I would have had plenty of time, but yuck- a car was NOT where I wanted to be.

Figure out a way to stay home is my vote


-Angela
 

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my hospital is almost an hour away.. Kay & David where both born there (different hospitals within 5 mins of each other tho) & I had no trouble riding either time..
not even with Kay.. who I delivered 35 mins after pulling in the parking lot.. it was AFTER i got out the car that things got rough
 

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With my second child we drove to the hospital when I was at 6cm and it was indeed excrutiating. It was only a 10 minute drive but it was so uncomfortable trying to find a position that wasn't awful and the movement and speed of the car and the brightness of the outside light was really intolerable.

If it were me I would either plan on going to the birth center early on in labor when contractions are 5 minutes apart and somewhat manageable (meaning you can talk in between them and joke, etc.) or work on educating dh on the safety of homebirth.
 

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I don't actually have ADVICE... but I'll be having a water birth at a hospital that is about 45 minutes away. It's the only place around here that does them. We don't have any birth centers here, and no other hospitals have a tub for it.
 

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It is possible, you just need to leave EARLY! Trust me, you don't want to be in the car an hour in intense labor. It would suck.

Have you explained to your DH that there is no increase in safety being in a birthing center? They don't have any more equipment there than what your midwife can bring to your house. You would be transported to the hospital for the same emergencies.

Edited to add that unless the birthing center you are talking about is different than the ones I'm thinking of, maybe the one you are going to has more of the hospital type equipment and staff. In that case nevermind what I said, but the birthing centers I have read about don't have facilities for emergencies like epdurals or c-sections or any other major stuff.
 

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I could easily travel in the first part of my labors.

The first 2, I sat on a couch talking to everybody without them thinking I was in labor.
My third I cleaned house and moved cars in our yard so we'd have more room for the mw and her helper.

After transition though forget moving I am where I am going to give birth. From transition to birth is a very short period of time for me. My first 2 labor where each around 5 hours my second was 2.

I would do it if its something I really wanted like you wanting a water birth.

I'd say go for it, but dont delay going once you are in labor.
 

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Hey! I had my first baby at a birth center that was exactly as far away as yours. It was the most wondeful experience in the world and I just wasn't ready for a homebirth yet. (For lots of reasons including midwife issues and the fact that we were in a teeny four-plex with thin walls :eyeroll) It is so worth it to go to a birth center even if you have to drive far. It is so much better than a hospital and even if you don't actually birth in the water, i am 100% convinced that having a tub is what made labor easier for me (as well as the fabulous birth environment etc. that comes with a good birth center.) You're not crazy! If it is what you want, go for it!
Aprilynne
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you all for responding!! My husband and I are going to go look at the hospital here in town and the birthing center in Santa Cruz. I am feeling like I will probably go the distance for the waterbirth. We aren't ready for a homebirth yet, and I can't imagine settling for a hospital birth that I have to labor on a bed in stirrups. I just hope when I go into labor it's not a false alarm. That's an awful long way to drive.

I'm reading The Birth Book, by Dr. Sears to help me figure out exactly what I want. It's good because it's focused on what's best for mother and baby, not the hospital. Thanks again for all of your advice!!
 

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Hi Danielle! I am just curious what makes you ready for a birthing center birth but not a homebirth? I am genuinely curious. The only birthing center in my area is called a birthing center but I think of it as an extention of a hospital, you need your OB to come there or a CNM, they don't allow "lay" midwives there, so I could never go there. The other birthing centers I have looked into in the past, not in this area, where I have lived before, were more like homes, they had "lay" midwives and didn't go by typical hospital protocols. In those birthing centers, the only benefit that I ever found was that you didn't have to worry about cleaning up any messes but safety wise they were equivallent to homebirths, same stuff would happen there than would happen at home and they were no better equipt to handle an emergency at the center as they would be if they came to your house. What kind of birthing center are you looking into? I am sorry I'm asking this again but I am so curious what makes one ready for a birth at a freestanding birthing center but not home when safety wise I don't think there is a difference. Unless it's like the one by my house that is staffed by more hospital types (which I suppose in some eyes calls the true safety of it into question if they are going to be treating you as you are bound by hospital type protocols- which they do at the one by my home) . I love understanding peoples reasonings and comfort views. Sorry if that sounds confusing. If we had a birthing center run by lay midwives, like the birthing center my midwife works in in Alaska, I don't know that I would go if the drive were that far, if it were a block away I might, but I am just trying to understand all the emotion surrounding this issue. I think whatever you choose will be a fine choice because you are picking between all safe gentle options, the curiousity is just getting me. This being your first birth you most likely have time to get there comfortably and safely.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The emotion comes from not knowing what to expect, yet knowing certain things that I want. I don't take any offense to your post, I'm kind of working through this as I go. I'm sure it's obvious that I'm confused.

The birthing center is affiliated with the hospital, but the hospital rules are much more relaxed in Santa Cruz, then it is is my hospital. They have CNM's that work there. They have tubs that you can birth in. I know that I could do all of this at home, but I guess I don't trust myself yet as a mother to do this myself. Does that make sense? My husband and I talked about it last night, and he isn't against a homebirth, which surprised me. He was before. And after I have given birth once, maybe I will feel more comfortable in my home. I might even regret my choice to not trust my body more. Hopefully not. I hope that by doing what feels comfortable for me at this point in my life, my baby will be more relaxed coming into this world.

Thanks for asking me for more info. It has really helped me to be able to talk about this with you all. And who knows, I could become more at ease with a home birth as June nears.
 

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For my first birth I drove 45 mins to the closest hospital, so yeah, it's doable.

For my second, I had a homebirth. (It was planned as waterbirth, but I changed my mind at the last min). I much preferred staying at home and letting everyone come to me,
. If you really want a homebirth, I'd work hard to DH to accept it as well. My DH thought I was crazy when I wanted to have baby 2 at a birth center, he accepted it though. THen around 30 weeks, I said "Oh honey, I think I really want a homebirth." By that time he already knew the safety and went with it just fine.
 
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