We had this discussion at our local homebirth meetup group, and I thought it would be interesting to hear from you ladies as well.

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My fist child was born at the hospital 7 years ago and I felt like I was just a machine. I was young and niave to the whole experiance and I was in the military at the time. I just did what I was told. I really have not every felt right about the experiance and this time around I decided this was going to be my way. I started doing alot of research when after 2 HBA1C's that came out great- I was "diagnosed" with GDB from the OB I was seeing. I became once again the product of the medical world with very restricted eatting, monitoring, blood tests, and many other things including getting me on insulin AND that was just very stressful. I decided that the hospital way was not may way- especially since I stopped gaining weight. I found a midwife that was willing to take me as I was labeled a "gestional diabetic" and her and I went through my records. She concluded that if I eat from the Glucose Index and eat anything under 50, I would not get a sugar spike. And sure enough- I have not and I started gaining weight again and feel much better!
I also am not a fan of medications. I had them with my first son and I really didnt like it. I didnt like that I was unable to do anything in the hospital. At the hospital here there is a 40% CS rate, 90% epidural rate, and not children are not aloud on the ward without an H1N1 Flu shot! I do not think I should have to subject my family to that just to be there to welcome a new family member to the world.
After reading and researching everything I could about alternative birthing methods, home birth was for me. I want to know the experiance and know the pain and know that I am a woman that was made to do this. Pain is what one makes of it and I know it is going to hurt, but there is always a prize at the finish line that is worth the pain 10 times over. So there it is. I have about 5-6 weeks left and I cannot wait to announce my success story!
And I cannot wait to hear all about it!
For us, I wanted to do a home birth, and my husband was totally fine with it. If at all possible, I did not want to be in the hospital setting with all its drugs, interventions, lack of privacy, pressure and strangers around when I gave birth. It was the natural thing to do as my mom had the four youngest of my siblings at home, my husband's mom had his youngest sister at home, and his married sister had given birth to most of her children at home. So we were both accustomed to it, had the support of our families and wanted to try that route when we married and started a family of our own! And it is the way I hope to have all our babies. :) It is so nice to have the freedom and privacy of your own home to labor and birth in. I would highly recommend it to every low-risk mother-to-be who can find a good midwife!
When I left the hospital after having my son I told the nurses I will never be back. They will never see me having another child. They laughed and said they'd see me in a few years. They were only 1/2 right. Despite the awful hospital experience I had, I did decide to have another baby but vowed it would not be at the hospital. I'm due tomorrow and hoping for a gentle natural home birth and can't wait to post the story!
Emily,
We can't wait to hear your birth story! Hoping you'll have a gentle and wonderful natural home birth. I just had my baby at home 2 wks ago, and it was the best decision I have ever made.
~Doris
We are pregnant with our fourth boy- due in three weeks! In fact, our midwife is due for her home-visit this Friday.

After three hospital deliveries, all of which were just "ok"- but all done by my induction-happy OB, we just knew we wanted something different. We experienced the cascading interventions from the inductions, the whole pit-epi-pit-epi cycle, and I just don't want the hassle again. My second was born with out an epi, and aside from the hellacious pit-intensified contractions the labor wasn't too bad. Don't want the well-intentioned nurses offering me drugs every twenty minutes due to a grimace on my face, or tethered to an IV, or relegated to ice chips, etc.

Additionally, with the last couple years spent in/out of a hospital while my husband was treated for cancer, I think we have all had our fill of the hospital atmosphere. I can recall thinking with all of our births "can I go home now?!" To me, birth is not a paperwork process, its a body process one that should be enjoyed on our own terms when deemed not high risk.

We did explore birthing center options but came to the conclusion we liked the idea of being home, comfortable and in a familiar place, with no "get up and go" -unless medically necessary. Our food at the ready, our laundry at the ready... no packing, or worrying...sometimes worrying about what you're going to do with the kids and dogs for a couple days is just not worth the hassle and you find your mind wandering when you should be focused on birthing.

We've had both medical and social reasons for choosing a home-birth... we want minimal-to-no interventions, we really liked having the option to pick a midwife that would be on board with this. We also liked knowing exactly who is going to be at our birth. Even with our first choice in midwife, she was on an OB staff, delivered at the hospital and was one of 6 midwives. You get who is on call for the day. So we decided to pay out of pocket, get the midwife we want, and deliver at home.

With a home birth, our boys can stay put, participate or not, and just "hang out" - our kids are a bit older, 13. 10 and 6. Plus, they have provided me with a wealth of humor during this pregnancy. Out of all three, this one has been the most taxing on me. My oldest cheering me on in the voice of Chef Ramsay- "push that baby out you cow!" (if you don't watch Hells Kitchen you wont get the joke). I can't imagine not having them around to help me keep my sense of humor, and focused on an enjoyable family birth.

We like the idea of just hanging here, having my sis drive over (she lives less than a mile away) and hang with the boys if needed. No crazy rush to deal with food, dinners or school.

Since having our three boys, we've moved away from our home-base of SF -so that means we're limited on family help (which is a blessing and a curse). I've got just one sister here in Portland. So keeping the birthing process at home, with only the people we wanted was important. The hospitals here are very rigid. We're a pretty low-key family, relaxed and tight-knit.

As I said, its a blessing and a curse being away from "home"- so we are quietly reveling in the fact that we are 600 miles from our very well-intentioned family (a family that could populate a small metro area) and we will not have a swarm of well meaning family around during delivery (no feelings will be hurt about who is allowed at the delivery) or just after at our home. We set up a Ustream link so that when we feel like sharing Jonah (baby on the way) with the fam, we can simply turn the web cam on. Whether that is during the delivery, or after baby is all cleaned up and we're settled... something tells me a hospital would not really be on board with that! ha!

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