There are no options for home births or water births in my area. I am fortunate enough to have an excellent midwife who is all about natural birth, but I still have to go to the hospital. I am so scared of being pushed into interventions that I don't want at the hospital and I fear that my being a bit of a hypochondriac and not being very confrontational, I won't be able to stand up for what I want in the midst of it. I am also worried about birthing naturally without water to help with managing the contractions. Are there any others who have had natural hospital births? What was your experience? Does anyone have any advise?
I'm sorry to hear this. You should be able to stand up for what you want out of your birth experience. Have you done your research well in looking at midwives or birthing centers, not just in your immediate area but perhaps in nearby areas that are at a reasonable distance?? With my first I considered a waterbirth at a birthing center, but there were none in my area (in fact there's only one free standing birthing center, an excellent one actually, in my whole state that's 4 hrs away. There is another one trying to open next spring). With time running out & uncertainity being my first pregnancy, I went the hospital route. For my 2nd sometime in the future I now know it is what I really want & I have done my research (and continue to) and so I am hoping for a natural home waterbirth & I am so excited!! : ) Again no birthing centers near by, but that's okay because I'm skipping right to a home birth and I have looked at various midwives that do homebirths. This is all for future planning for my next pregnancy, it is great to do the research. So I can only hope that it all works out for you & that you get the birthing experience you desire and just keep researching, perhaps you will come across something. And women do have natural child births all the time in hospitals. Yes as time ticks they will probably try to intervene here or there, but you have the right to say "No". Also waiting to go to the hospital, laboring at home, will help prevent them from intervening due to being admitted for a long time at the hospital. As long as you have a wonderful midwife/or doctor and nurses that are willing to work with you and give you the time to labor out your birth plan than it should all be fine. Good luck!!
I had a natural hospital birth. I didn't have the opportunity to be in the water and I handled contractions just fine. I did use Hypnobabies to help cope with the pain of early labor but had no interest in listening to the tracks during active labor. I still think it did help me to relax more, even if I didn't use the hypnosis at the hospital.
I also have no back bone. However when the time came I was definitely in no mood for nurses to push me around and was very vocal about my wishes. Your body knows what you need and I strongly believe it will empower you to take a stand for what you want when the time comes. The biggest thing for me was having support that knew what my wishes were and having lots of copies of my birth plan available. I made sure my husband knew through an through what we wanted and what I needed so that when I couldn't speak for myself I could trust that he would make the right decisions.
Also, research research research! Have reasons for your choices and be firm. This not only includes labor and delivery but also what they will and will not do with the baby when he/she is born. We decided not to do the Erythromycin gel in the eyes at birth because I have an allergy to Erythromycin and I didn't want to risk it. I knew he did not need it because of my sexual history. The hospital fought me and tried to guilt trip me into it but I stuck to my guns. I had reasons for my decisions and have no regrets.
And try not to worry about the birth. I know it's hard but it will not be the worst day of your life it will be the best day of your life. Even with intentions of having an unmedicated birth I was still afraid it would be too intense to handle without medication. I usually don't even suffer through a headache without taking an aspirin. In the end my body really did know what to do. It is intense but it is totally manageable and the pain is gone immediately after the baby comes out. I was ready to do it again the next day :-)
Make sure you talk to your midwife about all this stuff. If she's a huge proponent of natural birth, then she probably has some tricks up her sleeve.
If you really don't think you'll be able to speak up for yourself, hire a doula. Preferably someone full of "piss and vinegar" (as they say). Your midwife will unfortunately be in the position of having to yield at least somewhat to hospital procedures because she's part of their system. I imagine they can likely end her privileges at the hospital if she doth protest too much. But a doula doesn't have to care about that stuff. Interview plenty, and find someone who will be your voice.
Also, remember that you might be on their turf, but it's still your body. They still have to ask your permission before they do anything. Ask lots of questions. If a doctor or nurse offers you "help," clarify what they mean before you say yes. Find out what the alternatives are. Ask them what will happen if you do nothing.