I have always loved and found the long birth stories really inspiring and totally amazing during pregnancy so ‘Sorry not Sorry’ for the really really really long post… it will take a while to read so put your feet up!
Pregnancy overview; I found out 9DPO, burst ovarian cysts at 4 & 8 weeks, hyperemesis-gravidarum from 5 weeks, PGP, 2 lots of reduced movements and a history of surgery making me consultant led until after 20 weeks when I made my case and he made me midwife led.
After 2 weeks of latent labour preparations, once early labour started, things progressed quicker than we realised at the time, and almost without the midwife.
This is my home birth story. I wanted to make this; as whilst planning my own home birth, it surprised me how many women don’t know that this is an option for them too. My goal is not to belittle hospital births in any way, as I had a hospital birth of my own. If a woman wants or needs to have a hospital birth, then that is certainly the perfect place for her to be. My hope is just for women to know they have the capabilities of making the choices they wish. Every single pregnancy is different, so this is just my experience.
I am not promoting the act of going against medical advice, but rather listening to the advice given by your medical professionals, and understanding it is still your choice to make. It is always advised to do as much research as possible to support the decisions you make throughout your pregnancy.
On 24th August at 2.25am my second little boy was born into the world weighing 9lb 1oz. His birth was not what I had planned or envisioned in my head, however I feel it’s an important story on how to deal with changes to birth plans ‘in action’.
I had written a very simple birth plan with the following wishes:
Able to move around
Support & Reassurance that I can do this
No offer of pain relief unless I ask
Husband to cut cord & tell me the sex
Physiological delivery of the placenta
At 10 days overdue I was getting very fed up and trying not to focus on the impending induction I was booked in for. All week I had been getting lots of Braxton Hicks and twice thought I was in labour but things just stopped. Very frustrating! Especially when everyone is giving advice as to how I could ‘get things going’.
Birth story whilst it’s fresh in my mind …apologies for the length!!
Woke up on Friday morning and felt different. Had an urge to really deep clean the house (I’m clean-the-house obsessed anyway, but this was a whole new level!!), had eyebrows threaded, washed hair and painted nails, lovely meal with husband. I had mild cramps all day and felt a bit achy, but since Darcey was 12 days post dates, I had convinced myself this baby would be too.
We watched some Only Fools & Horses then went to bed about 10pm. John read me a hypnoscript for helping baby come out!
Then the drama started! Darcey (our 3 year old) started shouting for us. We went in and she had vomited everywhere. I then spent the next 4 hours changing sheets, washing mattress, getting us both showered and hair washed, into our bed…same thing happened so back up again. In the mist of all this, the cramping I had, disappeared.
I planned my home birth meticulously, right down to what snacks I would have on offer for our visiting midwives. An area that I did neglect when putting together my birth plan, however, was breastfeeding. Call me naive or maybe overly optimistic, but with my rose tinted glasses on I half expected our first breastfeed to be like a scene out of Snow White.
When my baby boy arrived in August 2015 at 38 weeks I was presented with the opposite, my beautiful baby just didn’t know what to do and I had very little knowledge to help guide him. The Midwives did their best to help me but nobody could get my baby to latch, and due to some minor concerns surrounding his blood sugars his first ever feed was not from me! Our breastfeeding journey definitely had a rough start but I am pleased to say we went onto breastfeed for over 2 years!
If I were to plan my home birth again, I would definitely dedicate an area on my birth plan to breastfeeding. I would also attend the one off breastfeeding session held at our local hospital (I attended this over a year later as a volunteer and found it so informative!). Another thing I would do is gather information on who can help if required. Looking at our local breastfeeding support there are 3 main types; NHS, Voluntary and Private.
New for 2019! Our monthly meetings are now held at Harrison Park, Hall Road, Hull. HU69DQ. On the 3rd Sunday of each month.
Our face to face meetings are an informal social meet up to discuss the option of giving birth at home. Meetings are often attended by; local families, Doulas, Midwives and other Practitioners related to pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding. Attendance numbers can vary.
Children are welcome to attend, the venue is child friendly, on one level and has some toys and changing facilities. There is also a cafe which is open to the public.