Home delivery

I finally got around to watching the Home Delivery programme that was on ITV the other night and I have to say that it was so nice to see such a balanced view of home birth on tv for once. (I think it is still available on ITV Player if you missed it. Well worth a watch!) It brought back so many lovely memories of my own home birth five years ago though.

When I had my first baby almost fifteen years ago, I don’t think that a home birth was even given to me as an option. It’s amazing how much attitudes have changed in such a relatively short time. To be honest though I don’t think that it even occurred to me that I could have him at home, it just wasn’t the done thing. Besides which, I ended up being terribly overdue and had to be admitted into hospital to be induced so I wouldn’t have been able to go down that route anyway.

My second baby was born just fourteen months later and again, I didn’t consider a home birth. My labour progressed stupidly fast and I was taken to hospital in an ambulance with a paramedic who was too busy talking to Mr Mostly about golf to realise that I was about to give birth there and then. After a forty minute labour, I ended up giving birth in the lift of the hospital which was traumatic to say the least.

It was almost seven years before my third baby came along and I had an amazing community midwife during my pregnancy who happened to be my first and only male midwife too! He was really pro home birth, especially given my previous history of having stupidly fast labours but Mr Mostly wasn’t quite as keen and I had to respect that. There was no way that I could have a home birth without his support. I ended up having yet another soap opera worthy labour though that saw us being locked out of the hospital in the middle of the night and if it hadn’t been for a patient sneaking outside for a cigarette and letting us in, I would have ended up giving birth right there in the car park. Lovely.

When did my babies go and get so big?!

When did my babies go and get so big?!

So when I was preparing to have my fourth baby, there was no question that I wanted to have her at home if I could. My previous labours had been terrifyingly fast but without any real complications. The trauma of being moved when I was so far into labour was not an experience that I wanted to repeat so in many ways, it seemed more risky to me to have her in hospital than it did to have a planned home birth. It wasn’t a decision that I took lightly but it felt like such a relief to take positive control of how my baby would come into the world. Of course, these things can never be planned and I think the best way to approach giving birth is with a very open mind as things can literally change in a heartbeat. I think having a fixed plan in mind can only lead to disappointment as these things are never quite that simple unfortunately. I have to say though that luckily for me, it couldn’t have been more perfect in the end.

True to form, my fourth baby was born very quickly. My labour started in the middle of the night and I didn’t waste any time in calling for the NHS midwives who soon arrived. It was all very calm and I felt so relaxed being in my own home. It is amazing what a difference this made. I know that the midwives examined me when they first arrived but other than that, I don’t really remember much about their presence as they pretty much left me to it. Or at least made it feel that way. They actually commented afterwards that it was the quietest and calmest birth that they had ever attended! Being able to sink into my own bed within minutes of giving birth was just bliss and my baby happily nursed while the midwives left me and Mr Mostly to enjoy those precious first moments. They slipped downstairs to make us a cup of tea and fill out their paperwork then ran me a bath as they tidied up. There is actually much less mess than you might expect though if I’m being honest. But oh the joy of my own lovely bed, Earl Grey in my favourite cup and saucer and my very own bath!

But best of all, while I had been busy giving birth my other three children were of course fast asleep in their beds across the landing. I will never ever forget that morning when they awoke to the news that their new sister was here. All being there at home together felt like the most natural thing in the whole wide world. The midwives had already gone at this point and so it was just the six of us snuggled up in my bed. That was without doubt the happiest moment of my life.

I know that a home birth isn’t the right choice for everyone and I know that not everyone has such straightforward labours. But for me, it was perfect. Absolutely perfect.

love-mostly

About (Mostly) Yummy Mummy

Blissfully happy (mostly) yummy mummy to four children and (occasional) domestic goddess. Aspiring author and blogger extraordinaire.
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20 Responses to Home delivery

  1. Mummy Zen says:

    Wow, sounds like a perfect experience! I did think about it with our second but went with the birth centre in the end. If we have a third, I may bite the bullet! A friend of mine, like you, had hers at home at night time while their other child slept – it’s great if it can work out like that :-)

  2. alysonsblog says:

    see that there made me have little cry – how absolutely wonderful to be able to have that experience – Ive had pretty rubbish births apart from my middle daughter’s which was much nicer but still a long way from what you just described x

  3. Moved to tears at this lovely, positive story. I would have loved a home birth. I’d have even settled for low intervention at a midwife-led unit, but it didn’t work out for me either time and I had two emergency sections.

    How amazing for your older children to just wake up to their younger sister.

  4. tracytid says:

    I had my first daughter in hospital, I was induced and it was all very quick in the end and I spent my first night with her in a busy ward feeling shell shocked, while the nurses tried to persuade me to let them put her in the nursery with the other bundles.
    When it came to my second daughter I knew I didn’t want that experience. The second time around you have more confidence in what your body can do. I was also worried about my eldest, I didn’t want to be away from her and also didn’t want her to meet her new sister in a sterile hospital ward.
    The midwives seemed quite excited about me having a home birth, they said it was what they trained for and when the time came it was all very calm. I remember my midwife sitting on my bedroom floor with a cup of tea and a biscuit and afterwards they ran me a bath while I introduced my two girls to each other. My mother in law had been staying so she could deal with my other daughter but they’d all slept through most of it.
    I’m lucky as I’ve had two babies with no complications and I know that home birth isn’t for everyone, but I do resent how many people tell me how brave I am for having a home birth, like I was taking a risk.
    Both births were really special experiences, looking back I think it’s funny how I spent so much of each pregnancy worrying about the birth when that was just a miniscule part of having a baby.
    My youngest is now 8 and says that her friends don’t believe she was born at home as apparently ‘you have to be born in a hospital’ :-D

  5. Your story is very similar to mine with quick labours etc. I had my last and 5th baby at home in the living room exactly 3 years ago while my older children were sitting in the kitchen eating SuperNoodle sandwiches! :D

  6. Hannah Ruth says:

    I just love hearing about other women’s birth stories, and amazing that all yours were so fast. My son was born in hospital but the idea of a future home birth does appeal in many ways. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

    • Yes all of my labours were stupidly fast – who knows why! Afterwards it is quite nice that it was over so quickly of course but during the labour, it can be quite scary that things are happening so fast! My longest labour was actually my home birth – a whopping 2 hours 10 minutes ;-)

  7. kbmanc says:

    What a fabulous, positive post.

    Like you I have 4 children. The 2 older ones born in hospital and the 2 younger ones born at home. I’m very lucky in that my longest labour has been 4 hours, my shortest 90 mins, all very straight forward with no complications.
    My 2nd hospital birth was a water birth so when I was planning my home birth for my 3rd I knew it was to be in water. Luckily we have a huge corner bath so my midwife saw no reason to hire a pool. Charlie was born in the bath 7yrs ago tomorrow with Paul and my 2 older girls present. It was the best experience of my life. That evening we all snuggled up in our bed with takeaway pizza :)
    Harrison was born in a similar fashion 4 years ago, at home in our bath with his big sisters present too along with Paul. I’m very lucky to have such wonderful memories but I don’t think I can ever get rid of my bath :)

  8. Errr the biggest goosepimples ever reading this!! so so lovely! i had easy births with both mine but never thought of a homebirth…but that bit about you all snuggled in bed makes me want one right now and i’m not even pregnant!!

  9. Michelle says:

    After so many rushed labours, having your 4th at home sounds marvelous, and I cant imagine how wonderful it must have been all 6 of you in bed. If we do have a 3rd I’d love to do as you did but I’m guessing due to my complications it wont be possible but I will definitely look into it if it does happen!

    I missed the show, so off to ITV player I’ll go once the girls are in bed.

    Thanks so much for sharing x

    • I think it’s a case of knowledge is power in these circumstances and I did an awful lot of research. You should definitely look into it just in case, you never know ;-)

  10. TheMadHouse says:

    Wonderful story and I have been and watched that program since reading this. I often wished that I could have had a home bitrth, b ut in the end a hospital birth was right for me (Crash section), however, I do believe that home births should be the norm rather than the exception.

    • It’s funny isn’t it how in such a short space of time that hospital births have become the norm when only a generation ago, nearly everyone had their baby at home. I’m glad you enjoyed the programme too :-D

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