From the moment I found out I was pregnant with my daughter I knew I wanted a ‘home birth.’ But this was my first pregnancy and I wasn’t sure if I would be allowed one. I remember asking the midwife on my very first appointment with her if I could have a home birth (even though the birth was a long way off, that didn’t stop me firing the questions at her). I was put at ease straight away and told that if the pregnancy went smoothly then they would do everything they could to help me get the birth I wanted.
I remember leaving that first appointment relieved and really happy that this might actually happen. This might sound weird but I never thought for one minute that I would have my baby in hospital, mainly because I do not like hospitals and will avoid them at all costs if I can. I was lucky that my pregnancy went very well, I was fortunate to have no morning sickness and only suffered with tiredness which it pretty good in my books. So from early on everyone was encouraging and putting everything in place for my ‘Home Birth.’ I was over the moon.
My Home Birth
My due date arrived and I remember sending my husband out to get me a pineapple, I had heard that it was meant to encourage labour to start. So that night I went to bed and ate a massive bowl of pineapple. Within a few hours I started to feel and hear popping under my rib cage and I remember saying to my husband, “I think it will happen tonight.” So I went to bed and had a good nights sleep, I woke up at 5.15am by my waters breaking. I started having mild contractions straight away and knew this was the day I had been waiting for.
By lunchtime a midwife came round and examined me, I was 3cms dilated and my contractions throughout the whole labour were all over the place. I remember whilst I was out walking we were timing them, some were 2 mins then 6minutes then 10minutes, when they hit 1 minute I thought I was about to have her. But no they soon went back up to 4minutes.
So there I was having crazy contractions on a really hot summers day in August 2005. It was a lovely day I had my husband and mum with me the whole time, aswell as an amazing midwife. We all sat in the garden and had a drink and waited for each contraction to pass. Its funny because I actually got sunburnt that day, something I wouldn’t have got in a hospital. Things were progressing well but the midwife was keen to speed things up and recommended that I got into the bath. I fought it at first because I felt I needed to stand and move around, it was my way of keeping comfortable but in the end I gave in and had a nice soak. I thought I was in the bath about 20mins but it was actually an hour and a half.
When I got out of the bath, I made my way downstairs were I was met by my mum and my midwife. Whilst I was in the bath my mum asked the midwife when she thought I would have the baby and she guessed around 10pm. WRONG….. not long after I walked into the lounge my body started pushing. I told the midwife who was shocked and said she would examine me, she then announced I was 10cms dilated. We were all really pleased and amazed as we thought I had a lot longer to go. There was a rush to cover the sofa and get everything ready.
Not long after that first urge to push came, my beautiful daughter was born. I had her in my lounge on the sofa on a beautiful summers day at 5.18pm (almost 12hours after my waters broke). It was the perfect birth without a doubt, I was very lucky because after a few good pushes it was all over and my little princess was handed to me. I remember the moment she came into the world like it was yesterday her eyes were wide open and looking around as if to say “whats going on?” She was full alert and the most beautiful thing I had ever seen.
The only pain relief I used was a Tens Machine, it was really good and worked so well for me. Gas and air did arrive at my house late, but I never used it. At the end, it all happened so quick. I know some of you must be wondering if I ruined my sofa, the answer is no….. The midwives covered everywhere really well in plastic sheets and old bed covers, but they were amazed because there was hardly any mess, it really was a fantastic experience and one I will never forget.
After I had fed my princess I had some toast and a bath and I was in my own bed with my baby girl in the crib next to me, ready for sleep. Although like most mums I don’t think that first night anyone sleeps, I was awake all night staring at this amazing little person, wondering how I made her. The adrenaline in my body kept me up all night but I didn’t care I was at home and I had had the best day.
My ‘Home Birth’ was amazing, everyone was really supportive of it and helped me to have the birth I really wanted. If you would like a Home Birth and are not sure where to start, talk to your midwife they are there to help you.