Woahhhh. I had no idea the responses I would get when we started telling people we were having a home birth. I was confident in my decision, but sometimes people wondered if we were on the crazy train. We had a hospital birth with my first, and overall things went well. I was induced (10 days overdue) and was able to have a natural birth which I was thankful for. But there was something about the idea of having your baby at home that seemed so comforting to me. We decided to use a local birth center. Originally we were going to have the baby at their facility. We currently had an 18 month old that had not spent a night away. I hated the thought of her first night away being when her sister entered the world. After talking with the birth center, we found out they offer home births as well and decided to deliver at home.
The story goes a little something like this. My husband had been up for almost 24 hours. He was working swing shift at the time and had just come off night shift. He was up the whole following day. We were getting ready to go to bed around 11:00pm, and I started feeling something. I looked at my husband and said, “I think it’s happening.” He said, “Are you sure? Can it wait until morning?” I tried not to laugh but I know I did. I told him I don’t think it works like that and we should probably call the midwife. Poor guy was so tired. But I was also getting ready to birth a baby so I could only give so much grace in that moment.
We had a friend come stay with our toddler. She was in and out of sleep all night. So it was wonderful having our friend there to help keep her company. She also came in to say “hi” to Mommy and Daddy before things really got going. Those were some special moments.
I loved doing the “slow dance” motion during my contractions with my first birth, and I followed suit with the second as well. I just wanted to stand and sway. Things really got going around 3:00am. Intense contractions with small breaks in-between. Which I never got when I was induced. What a relief to have a break! Even if for just a few minutes. My water broke around 4:50am and I was ready to push right after that. Olivia was born at 5:05am. She was twelve days late, only to be born on Leap Day!
- I didn’t have to go anywhere. Being in the comfort of my home was incredible. I didn’t have to ask if I could do anything. My midwife was calm and gave me confidence that I was doing a great job. Also, not packing a hospital bag was the cherry on top.
- My toddler didn’t have to go anywhere. I remember finding out we were pregnant and immediately thinking about how she would adjust to this new addition. She was able to meet her little sister at home. Shortly after Olivia was born she came into our room and got to hug and kiss her for the first time. It was one of the sweetest moments I can remember. It’s a moment that will forever melt my heart.
- Comfort in knowing that if something were to go wrong, my midwife would be on top of it. The biggest question we received was, “What if something goes wrong?” Midwives are very well trained and are definitely aware of what to do if something does go wrong. They are not shy about that. We were well aware that if they think anything may be wrong in any way, they wouldn’t hesitate to get us where we need to be. Not once did I question if we were in good hands. My husband did just admit to me the other day that he was “freaking out” the whole time. But I was fine. Must’ve been his sleep deprivation.
- Sleep in my own bed. Y’all. After everything was said and done, we took the longest family nap ever. It was so needed. No one was waking us up. We just slept. I felt so much more rested this time around, and I credit it to the fact that we could sleep when we wanted to. Aside from the feedings every 2-3 hours of course.
- I could do whatever I wanted to do. I remember looking at my friend, who had also had a home birth, and asking her, “Is it ok to eat a banana?” She assured me I could do whatever I wanted to do. That was a good feeling. And that was one good banana.
I am thankful for the opportunity to have a baby at home. It was a beautiful experience and we hope to have all our future children at home as well.
Do you have any questions about home birth? Have you had a home birth yourself? Let me know in the comments below!