My son was proudly born at home, in water. The suggested birth tub by our midwife is a kiddie pool that our local home hardware stocks specifically for this! Apparently an actual birth tub is bigger and a hot water tank can’t always fill it. Also, a birthing tub costs $150+, where as ours was $40!
And we got a sweet pool our of the deal.
When it came time to decide where our son would be born, I said HOSPITAL! Our hospital has a birthing tub, and was 15 minutes away from home, we felt good about it. Then we got into pre-natal classes and they pointed out that our small town hospital has the same amenities as you would have at home. And your risk of infection or sickness is lower because you’re not exposed to all the hospital bugs.
This really got us thinking. You mean Us, the homebodies of all time, could have our baby without having to leave our house? Right on! My Mom, who was our Doula, (A woman who helps the parents, not the birthing process) was nervous at first, but soon realized how great it would be. She says she never thought that a baby would be born in her basement!
In British Columbia, where we live, a homebirth is completely covered by our medical! It cost us the tub, thats it. We had a midwife and a nurse, and they had two tables set up. One was a baby resusitation table (It was on the green change table in the back) in case anything went wrong, and the other was any tools they may need. They bring along oxygen in case Mom or Babe needs it. Also, they bring Oxytocin, in case I started to bleed (from you know where) a shot of it would clamp my uterus and stop the bleeding.
A mandatory item is to have a sign at the bottom of your driveway. A big sign. One time, a couple didn’t, and the midwife was on her cellphone with the Dad, driving back and forth trying to find the driveway, while she could hear the Mom pushing in the background. She had instructions along the lines of “just past the arbutus tree, down and two farther on the left”. Why yes, that is day/night glow orange spray paint! Our neighbours probably thought we were tacky.We weren’t leaving anything up to chance.
The best part for us, was that it was relaxed, there was no stress, no checking into a hospital, and we were in our own environment. I must point out that we have friends who start out at home, with all intentions of staying there, and end up in a bigger city hospital to have their baby. It doesn’t work out well for everyone, but for us, it was perfect.
I went into labour just before 1 am, and by 5 am , the midwife was there and I was well along. We went outside, checked on our animals and took in the sunrise. Of course every couple minutes was a contraction, but it was so natural. It made you truly feel the naturalness of birth, not the hospitalized version. We were not ‘patients’, nothing was wrong with us, we were ‘clients’ of the midwives.
Our son was born at 9:27 am weighing 8lbs 12 oz of perfection!
And I was wiped. By the grace of God, we were allowed a beautiful home birth to bring our healthy son into the world, and I promptly fell asleep in bed about 1 1/2 hrs later. I was pooped. Luckily, my Mom was our Doula, and now our babysitter. She spent 2 lovely hours cuddling her new grandbaby while we slept! After, I went upstairs while Cowboy cuddled his new baby and I searched out a snack. I bugged the heck out of my sister (who rushed over to the island as soon as she could!) by walking from fridge to cupboard and back looking for something to eat. She said “SIT DOWN! You JUST had a baby! We will get you a snack!” I responded with my usual “But I don’t know what I want to eeeeat”.
To me, it was amazing that I could be in my regular surroundings and not itching to get out of the hospital and back home. I pray we will be lucky enough to do this will all of our children.
Think about it if you have the option, you won’t regret it.