Thursday, December 22, 2011

Why we chose a home birth...

First of all let me say, I am not a hippie.  A lot of my choices for our birth seem very hippie-esque, but again I’ll say: I am not a hippie. I just like to be informed, and I felt that researching every aspect of birth was important before we simply made a decision just because it's "normal". 

When we found out we were pregnant, we had already discussed the option of having a home birth.  My mother is a doula and her experiences have given me an inside view on hospital births in our country and I truly couldn't see having our baby in a hospital.  Vince didn’t really have an opinion yet, so we watched a few documentaries and did some research.  After watching “the business of being born” he looked at me and said, “forget hospitals, lets have our baby at home”.  From then on we were sure of our decision.  

I searched for a home birth midwife, and found Charlotte Sanchez.  I liked how knowledgeable she was about birth and health for mom and baby. I was comforted by how experienced she was, having delivered hundreds of babies over the past 18 years.  After meeting with her I knew we were in great hands.  we were also great candidates for a home birth.  I was very healthy and my levels were all text book, so there was no reason I couldn’t deliver our baby at home.  Our appointments were so different from what I’d experienced in doctors offices over the years. they were calm, inviting and we never felt rushed.

So many people have asked us why we chose a home birth.  People seem to think it’s risky, dangerous, or even irresponsible.  I find this almost funny, because the majority of hospital births I’ve seen or heard of sound a WHOLE lot scarier than home births.  In a hospital, you are on their clock.  You are on a schedule, and your baby coming isn’t solely up to you and your body.  There are nurses and doctors, most of whom you’ve never met, coming in and out of your room constantly.  You have to adhere to the hospitals policies, most of which are in place to protect them from law suits. I wish women would do more research and ask more questions when having hospital births.  Most women don’t know that pitocin makes contractions harder, stronger, and can put your baby in distress.  Most women don’t ask what the side effects are when the doctor flippantly recommends interventions.  In my case, if I had had an epidural-my delivery would have ended in a cesarean.  A doctor would have told me that "my birth canal wasn't big enough" and that's what I would have walked away believing.  As I tell our birth story, I’ll explain how different things would have been if we’d been in a hospital.

I know and trust my body, and I know it's capable of doing amazing things.  I also know that God made it to give birth-and I believed that the less we interfered with that, the better chance we'd have for a wonderful birth.  I was right.  

I don’t judge those who feel safer delivering in a hospital.  I understand that home birth isn’t for everyone, and while I’m so incredibly thankful and happy I delivered our baby at home, I know not every woman can or should do it.

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