Hospital with #1

Our oldest is 6 years old. I was starting to get into more natural living when I was pregnant with her, so we decided to go with a midwife at a conventional hospital for her birth. I was in labor over 36 hours and ended up getting an epidural. Overall, it was a good experience at the hospital and with the midwife at the hospital, but I also knew I wanted my next birth to be different. I love privacy. I have a feeling if I had been at home for my first birth it might not have been as hard as it was. Not too long after she was born, someone recommend I watch, ‘The Business of Being Born documentary. Whoa! It’s a good documentary to give you a feel for home births versus hospital births. I loved it and knew that I wanted my next birth to be at home.

Home Birth for #2

I really wanted to do a home birth with my second, but my husband was unsure. He agreed to meet with a midwife though. Once he met her, he was sold. The midwife we went with was in her 60’s and had been doing home births for over 40 years. I can’t remember how many births she had attended, but it was well over 2,000. I LOVED how normal she treated everything, and how laid back she was. I actually felt so much safer with her than I had at the hospital. Everything went amazing, and after that, my husband became an evangelist for home births. It still makes me smile every time he talks with someone about it. He truly LOVED the experience and wants people to know how great it is.

Controversy

Home birth is sometimes still a touchy subject. I know it’s becoming more common now. I have lots of friends that do it, but oftentimes, I mention home births to people and they get a shocked expression on their face. They think I’m crazy for doing something so ‘risky.’ But there is plenty of research out there showing that for low-risk births, home births are just as safe as hospital births. I’m so thankful for hospitals, but I don’t agree with all they do. I’ve done quite a bit of research on birth, and I really feel comfortable doing it at home.

What I Chose This Time

After such a great experience with our first home birth, we wanted to do it for this child as well. We had a different midwife this time, because the one we had used for our second child sadly passed away. The midwife who helped us this time has been amazing. She’s a nutrition practitioner as well so she has been so helpful throughout my pregnancy.

Pregnant with #3

I am not one of those people that love pregnancy. It’s actually very hard on me. Let’s just say I was throwing up 2-4 times a day for 2 1/2 months, and I stay extremely nauseated until 40 weeks. I have to eat every 15-30 minutes the entire pregnancy, or I get nauseated and throw up. I am also only 5’3″ so towards the third trimester, I have a really hard time sleeping due to extreme pain in my ribs. All in all, pregnancy is something I am thankful for but do not enjoy (I wish I did!).

My midwife was amazing at helping me with nutrition. We tried lots and lots of things to help with my nausea. In the end, phosfood helped the most. I have no idea why, but if I took some when I felt nauseated, it would make it go away for about 30 more minutes. It made it so I could eat when I felt hungry and not because I simply felt nauseated and had to eat.

I also had low iron the entire pregnancy. If it gets too low, it’s too risky to do a home birth. My midwife first let me try eating certain foods to get my iron up (dark leafy greens, red meat, etc.) and when that didn’t work, we moved on to iron supplements. In the end, that didn’t work either. We ended up thinking my body didn’t process B12 correctly which means it can’t process iron correctly either. So, I was getting plenty of iron, but my body wasn’t able to process it (I think! It’s all a bit complicated to me). She got me on some supplements that helped me process B12 better and therefore my iron went up just enough to safely do a home birth.

Labor & Delivery with #3

I’ve always done decent during the contraction part of labor. This time I was in active labor about 4-5 hours which isn’t too bad. We set up a pool in my bedroom, and I did a lot of labor in there. But then came the pushing. Granted, I only pushed 10 minutes, but that was 9 minutes and 59 seconds too long in my mind. I do not like pushing at all. I stayed fairly peaceful until pushing. That’s when I panicked (and have on the birth of my other 2 children as well). I wish I could say I did the entire labor peacefully and without panic or fear, but I can’t. Pushing just does me in every single time. Our plan is that this is our last child, and I cannot express how thankful I am that this should be the last time I had to push a baby out. The pool helped so much though.

What I LOVE about home birth is how natural it all is. The midwives let you mostly do what you want. If you want the lights off, they put on their headlamps when they need to check you. If you want a pool, you can do a pool. And after the baby is out, there is so much more freedom. I immediately held Aero (our son’s name), and no one took him from me for over an hour and a half. There was plenty of cleaning up to do so after the midwife made sure he was okay on my chest, she went about cleaning and checking me while he peacefully rested on my chest. It’s such a wonderful feeling to sleep and recover in your own bed and to wake up the next morning at home. I am a home-body so home birth for me couldn’t be more perfect.

Your Choice

I 100% get that home birth isn’t for everyone. When people ask me about it, I try to let them know why I chose it for me. I have no regrets for doing two of my children at home. If anything, I am immensely grateful that I was able to. Midwives are superstars and such a blessing to work with. You aren’t a midwife unless you truly love your work. They know so much about what they do, and they have so much passion to see that women have the delivery they want. I’m so happy I got to work with two wonderful ones.

11 Responses to “Why I Chose Home Birth”

  1. Kirsten

    What a wonderful birth story! I’m sorry pushing feels so rough for you. That does not sound fun at all! I’m totally with you on loving home birth. We’ve had four of our five kids born at home, and it’s so nice to just curl up in your own bed with your new baby and not have to pack up and go anywhere. :) Many blessings on you and your sweet new son!

  2. I had all 3 of my boys at my midwifes birth center, which is basically her house, which was perfect for me as the places were we lived when we had all 3 wouldn’t have worked for home birth. Our experiences was great for all 3 but I agree with the pushing! So hard!! Nothing compares to when that baby finally comes out. Choosing our midwife was so easy and we have such trust in her because she was my mother in laws midwife for 7 of her 10 kids(including my husband!) it’s so amazing that now she gets help bring his kids into the world. Anyway, congratulations and blessings to your family! Your new baby boy is beautiful! :)

  3. Angela

    I had my daughter at home and it was the best choice I ever made! My husband was also not sure if it was the right thing at first (we had had our son I the hospital with a midwife). But once we did more research and talked with our midwife, we realized it was the right fit for us. In BC, Canada, where we live, you legally have to have two midwives assist you in a home birth. My midwifes were amazing! I loved the freedom to labour how I needed to. I knew that a water birth not the right fit for me but I loved being in my own space. I highly recommend a home birth if you have a low risk pregnancy.

  4. Louise

    This makes my heart sing! I never thought I’d be a home birth advocate. But I had the most amazing experience with our 5th birth at home. I say “i” and not “we” as hubby slept through while I labored and then he went downstairs to let the midwife in and they both came upstairs to find me holding our precious baby girl! There is something so empowering about that! I was also blessed with an amazing midwife. My first birth was an emergency c-section, my 2nd & 3rd required induction and I had epidurals. My 4th was my first intervention free birth, but still at hospital…just!! So it feels like we have come full circle having our 5th at home. And isn’t it funny how the husbands become such great advocates for home birth too. Congratulations again! You are a beautiful and blessed family. Thank you for being such a blessing to others in all you do. Big hugs from New Zealand x

  5. Brittany

    So wonderful to hear about your story! I have a very similar story with my kiddos. My girly who is 6 born at the hospital, my son 3 was born at home and my son 3mon also at home. Such an amazing and beautiful experience. Our midwife was also from Redding, Becka English. She was wonderful!

  6. How would you best go about educating your spouse to consider a home birth? I actually delivered my first almost a year ago with a midwife in a stand alone birth center. No drugs, not even the option for drugs, and I labored 4 hours at home, 2 at the birth center with 15 minutes pushing and- hello baby! That being said, it felt easy and I am do to be “low-risk” for subsequent pregnancies (at least that’s what my midwife says). We honestly at one point thought I might have to deliver at home because we couldn’t get my midwife or doula on the phone to open the birth center! I think he’s always going to be worried about the “what-if’s” but everything points to me being able to have an easy home birth with our next one. Any thoughts?

    • Hi Rachel, my husband was definitely hesitant. He agreed to meeting with the midwife though and seeing what he thought. It only took one meeting with her and him being able to ask his questions… he was sold. Now he tries to talk everyone he can into doing home births :) He loved that we did them.

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