Homebirth & Motherhood

10 Most Commonly Asked Questions by New Homebirthing Moms

Six years ago, I found myself planning my first ever homebirth. A little over six years prior to that, I was being induced with my firstborn that later resulted in a near-death emergency cesarean.

Talk about an eye-opening experience! Not only did it change my perception of giving birth, but it also left me with PTSD that I didn’t realize at the time. And after that, I didn’t want more children.

Of course as year passed my desires of having more children changed, but the fear of the unknown lingered. Once Bryan and I conceived and decided to have a home birth, the search began. There was a lot to navigate, understand, and weed out; hence, why I want to share the 10 most commonly asked questions by new homebirthing moms.

Is homebirthing legal?

Because homebirthing takes place worldwide, I will always tell mamas to check with their specific states, providence, and/or country laws first and foremost.

Living in America, I can tell you that giving birth at home is legal in all 50 states. Where legality comes in is if you plan to hire a midwife. Each state has their own midwife certification laws (or not).

Some states allow both direct entry and nurse midwives to practice and be licensed. Some states, like Alaska, allow Medicaid to be billed and give CNMs prescriptive authority. Other states like Connecticut do not have licensure available and direct entry midwives are not regulated by the state.

Unique states like Georgia actually have direct entry midwives that practice “illegally” because certification that is required by state law in not available. Adding to that (in GA), CNMs are only authorized to practice as advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs).

My advice: Check with the laws where you live IF you plan on hiring a midwife. Other than that, you are safe to deliver your baby at home. Click here for more state-by-state information regarding midwife laws.

Do I need assistance?

Simply answered, the preference is yours. In depth, there are a lot of factors to consider when choosing the route to have an unassisted homebirth (also know as freebirth).

Speaking from personal experience, the biggest determining factors are confidence, informed decisions, and planning. Whether you choose to have assistance or not, I highly recommend getting the aforementioned under control.

The midwife we had for our first homebirth helped me realize that I had PTSD that wasn’t dealt with from my first labor and delivery. I’m thankful for that breakthrough because I do believe it was a determining factor in how we have handled every pregnancy, labor, and delivery since that.

I also believe that assistance goes much further than the hiring of a midwife and/or doula. Assistance can be in the form of supportive family members, a support group, or even supplements.

My advice: Whatever assistance route you plan to take, be confident, informed, and secure in your choice(s).

Can I have a hombirth after having a cesarean?

This was one of my biggest questions because as I mentioned before, my first delivery resulted in an emergency cesarean. I even had to get put to sleep and receive a couple pints of blood due to the doctor’s cut.

The research I found was terrifying – at first. Once I navigated what “they” want you to see to keep you blind and dependent on “the system,” I started coming across non-biased information (puts tin foil hat away).

First and foremost, cesareans are considered a major surgery. The procedure in and of itself can be life-threatening to both mom and baby, but as with most things in the modern medical world, procedures become second-nature and the norm once performed a certain amount of times.

I say this next part very lightly because I don’t want to put possibilities in a box… however, there are some things to consider if you are planning to have a VBAC, especially an HBAC:

  • Have you had previous vaginal deliveries?
  • What type of incision did you have?
  • How many c-sections have you had?
  • When was your last c-section?
  • Are there any health concerns?

With those questions also comes understanding the huge difference between having a cesarean and vaginal birth. If you’re like me, I wasn’t sure what to expect pain wise (or healing wise). My firstborn was induced almost 2 weeks before his actual due date (doctor convenience), and I had the routine meds and epidural. The recovery pains were masked by prescribed drugs and all I had left were horror memories and a scar (and my baby, of course).

Having my first HBAC was a unique, scary, and empowering experience all wrapped up in one. The pain was there but bearable. The labor and delivery was new, but happened comfortably at home. Although I had to transport after this particular delivery, it was not due to any VBAC issues whatsoever.

My advice: Take into consideration the questions mentioned above. If you have any concerns, speak to a healthcare professional that is not biased and will genuinely share true information and suggestions.

Are health checks necessary?

I believe this is totally dependent upon your health history. It is probably not smart to not have a few checks if you have a history of health issues. However, for the mostly healthy mama, checks may not be necessary.

I’m an unassisted pregnancy and homebirther so my checks come from intuition. It may sound crazy but I’m super in tune with my body and can tell when it lacks something. I also have a history of low iron, so I take an herbal iron tincture to help with that.

During my first two homebirths we had a midwife who did the bare minimum. She would check iron levels (because of my history), blood pressure, and fetal growth. I never received vaginal checks unless it was show time.

My advice: The choice is yours if you prefer prenatal checkups. Consider your health history and listen to your intuition.

Do I need a certain birth space?

Take one look on Pinterest or Instagram and you can find everything from decked out birth spaces filled with candles, flower petals, and a bath of warm water to women giving birth in the bathroom or on the bed.

I personally and naturally navigate to the bathroom and end up birthing on all fours. This has been the case two births in a row. Environmentally speaking, nesting always kicks in a few days before birthing day so having everything clean is never an issue. As for creating a tranquil birthing experience, we play music and may diffuse an essential oil or two.

My advice: Plan for the birth space you’d like to have and do it!

Is there a certain method that makes it better?

Yes and no. Do another quick Google search and you can find all kinds of methods that women will swear by. Others will testify and say their method of choice went out the window when it was labor and birthing time.

Methods are certainly there for a reason and you may very well find one that works for you. If you’re like me, I have my own method, which is not really a method at all. I let nature take its course.

I stay in tune with my body… listening, watching, and feeling for any cues that need my attention and go from there. When labor starts, I remain calm and go with the flow. When its push time, I release and push!

My advice: Research the different methods women have tried, then decide if one of them is something you’d like to incorporate into your birthing experience.

What if something goes wrong?

This is another top question, although it’s further down on my list. Regardless if you’re giving birth at home, a birth center, or even a hospital – every birth is different. Some unexpectedly end in complications while others are anticipated.

In my honest opinion, this is a no-brainer. If you find yourself in a life-threatening emergency, seek medical attention and help immediately. If you have a midwife and/or doula on board, they should know what to do.

Taking the unassisted route? There are some great support groups (like this one for Unassisted Pregnancy/Birth moms) that give a wealth of advice for non-medical emergency situations. There are supplements, herbs, tinctures, and old school ways of handling non-life threatening issues that may arise.

My advice: Do your research. Become familiar with what’s available and how to handle non-life threatening situations. Have a plan in place in the event of a life-threatening emergency.

What if I get to the end and can’t do it?

That’s okay! It happens, and you certainly won’t be the first or last that this could happen to. The biggest obstacle to overcome if this happens is self-guilt, doubt, and depression.

As a mother who had not one, but two births not go quite as planned, I can tell you that the guilt, doubt, and depression are very real. If not dealt with, they can certainly lead to depression and a number of other issues that can affect having future children and/or current parenting.

My advice: Be okay with your choices. Get the necessary help you need to overcome and/or conquer anything that arises from things that may happen out of your control.

What supplies do I need?

This totally depends on your choice of assistance. Most midwives provide you with a supply list that can be purchased through them or their go-to resource.

If you’re choosing an unassisted route, there are a number of things you can have on hand. At first I thought I needed everything under the sun. When show time came, we used two towels, a bowl, some scissors, and an umbi-ring (cord clamp). That’s it.

Some moms feel more comfortable having extra things on hand like a plastic liner (if birthing on a bed or carpeted surface), mini pool for water births (if not using bath tub), extra towels, gauze pads, gloves, and more.

I have several blog posts that can help give you an idea of supplies and products to consider (yes, they open in a new window):

My advice: Get with your midwife about supplies she’d like to have on hand. If going unassisted, research and decide what products you’d prefer to have on hand.

Planning Your Homebirth

I know how overwhelming it can be when deciding to have your baby at home, especially if it’s your first. I’ve made it super easy to help you plan your special experience with my Homebirth Planning Pack. It’s absolutely free and you can snag it below!

Psst… if you would like help with planning your homebirth I’m available to serve you! Fill out this form and I’ll get back with you within 24 hours!

CHIME IN: Not your first homebirth rodeo? Tell me (and other mamas) about it in the comments below!

Holistic Health & Wellness, Homebirth & Motherhood

12 Must-Have Products for a Healthy, Holistic Pregnancy

Finding out you’re expecting a bundle of joy can be one of the most exciting times in life. Then, the thoughts of having a healthy pregnancy creep in along with the stresses of what to eat/what not to eat, what to put on your body/what not to, and so on.

I’m currently expecting our fifth child and I’m here to tell you that those thoughts don’t lighten up just because you have a house full of children. I’ll also admit that although I’m way more healthier now than when I had my first 12 child years, I still battle(d) with thoughts of having a healthy pregnancy.

There are several precautions we can take as expecting mothers, much of it being taking into consideration past and current health status, and the willingness to make the necessary changes. This is where my suggested list of must-have products for a healthy, holistic pregnancy comes in.

A Little Disclaimer

I want to give the disclaimer now, versus at the end of this blog post, because it should be noted that I am not claiming to have all the answer. I am not a licensed healthcare professional, and you should always seek your personal healthcare professional if you have any questions about products you’d like to use during pregnancy.

I’ll also admit that while there is certainly a place for Westernized medicine, most healthcare professionals beyond the naturopathic field are not quite “familiar” with nor do they primarily suggest products that are natural and pure. This is where your right and freedom to your own research and advocate for your own health kicks in.

Let me also share that I have been on both sides of the fence. I was a mainstream mama who went the traditional route of “do what the doctors say because they know best.” I also experienced trauma and unnecessary medical procedures during my first labor and delivery… resulting in an emergency c-section that almost claimed the life of me and my son.

The other side of the fence is where I’m currently building my house (LOL). I understand my right to research information, as well as my ability to take my healthcare (and that of my family’s) into my own hands. I am not afraid to seek assistance when necessary, but rarely are they ever needed (for my family personally).

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way… let’s look at some must-have products for a healthy, holistic pregnancy!

 Vitamins

The key to considering any type of vitamin is to know what’s in it. And believe it or not, knowing what’s in it is only half the battle. The other half involves understanding what the ingredients in them actually do for your body. Most “multivitamins” are synthetic with lots of additives (no bueno).  They also offer big doses of vitamins and minerals that cannot be wholly and properly absorbed. This ultimately throws off nutrient balance (the exact opposite of what we need, right?).

So what constitutes a good vitamin? They should include some form of:

  • organic herbs
  • vegan base
  • gluten-free
  • MTHFR-safe
  • natural and pure

Another rule of thumb is if you can pronounce the ingredients. If it has words that look like a foreign language, I suggest staying away from them. Vitamins I do recommend considering are:

  • Nourish Her Naturally (packed with nothing but herbs: nettle leaf, red raspberry leaf, dandelion leaf, catnip leaf, alfalfa leaf, and spearmint leaf all extracted in sustainable palm-derived glycerin)
  • Immune-Aid Vitamin C Powder (powder-based with: camu camu powder, acerola berry, orange peel, and stevia – and that’s it!)
  • Energy Plus – Herbal Iron (consists of: yellow dock, dandelion leaf, spearmint leaf, nettle leaf, and rosehips with organic palm-derived vegetable glycerin and filtered water) *I take this supplement daily!*

There are many other vitamins out there (especially those that claim “natural”) but the ones listed above are a few that I personally and highly recommend.

Teas & Other Beverages

It wasn’t until my first homebirth that I was awakened to the world of teas, especially those that are amazing for expecting mothers. I’m not sure if I’ve heard this anywhere, but it just came to mind – A cup of tea a day is the natural, holistic way!

Teas work much like vitamins, but that also means that they need to be natural and pure in ingredients as well. A few of my favorite go-to teas are:

  • Lemon-Ginger Pregnancy Tea (made with: lemon peel, ginger root, raspberry leaf, green rooibos, dandelion leaf, nettle leaf, and catnip)
  • Raspberry Leaf Tea (made with: raspberry leaf)
  • Birds & Bees Ripe & Ready Tea (made with: raspberry leaf, hibiscus petals, rose petals, cinnamon bark, allspice berries, and crystallized pinapple) *Should only be drank during 3rd trimester!*

Other beverages I recommend:

  • Smoothies (made with natural fruits and vegetables)
  • Super Foods Powder (made with: acai powder, blueberry powder, raspberry powder, strawberry powder, tart cherry powder, beet powder, cranberry powder, ginger root powder, burdock root powder, and chaga mushroom powder) *perfect for entire family and can be mixed in smoothies, yogurt, and apple sauce!*
  • Coconut Water
  • Vegetable Juices
  • Milk
  • WATER!!!

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The Body

Growing bellies and rapid weight gain (or loss) are definitely contributing factors to the dreaded stretch marks. However, no fear mama! Beyond embracing the beautiful changes our bodies endure, we can prepare our skin for all it may endure – from stretch marks to becoming increasingly dry and itchy!

Some go-to body creams, butters, and serums I suggest are:

  • Soothing Belly Butter (ingredients: mango butter, organic cocoa butter, organic comfrey leaves, grapeseed oil, and organic rosehip seed oil) *This one’s coming in my next order, woot woot!*
  • Vitamin D Cream (ingredients: cod liver oil, emu oil, avocado oil, organic mango butter, and candellila wax) *Can’t wait to try this one too, and for the hubby who has a Vitamin D deficiency!*

There aren’t many suggestions for this one because once you find something that’s good (and works), why look for more?!

Other Aids

I for one experience horrible sinuses while pregnant, not to mention a few rounds with morning sickness. These are no fun when trying to get used to the changing hormones, growing belly, and the physical feels of a baby (or two) growing within you. Below are a few products that can help with those other pregnancy side-effects:

  • Mama’s Tummy Relief (made with: organic fennel seed, organic ginger root, organic catnip, organic blackberry leaf, organic dandelion root, organic palm-derived vegetable glycerin, and filtered water + alcohol free!)
  • Sinus Saver (made with: organic nettle leaf, organic elderberries, organic turmeric root, organic black pepper, organic dandelion root, organic cane alcohol, filtered water)
  • Postpartum Balance (made with: organic herbs (turmeric, black pepper, dandelion root, catnip, alfalfa) organic alcohol, filtered water)
  • Natural Balance (made with: licorice root, dandelion root, shatavari root, catnip, ashwagandha, organic alcohol and filtered water)

And There Ya Have It Mama!

Of course there are numerous other vitamins, teas, body creams, and other aids you can find and incorporate into your pregnancy regimen, but be mindful of ingredients. The ones I’ve suggested above are those I’ve either tried and/or currently use or plan to use, but most importantly trust.

If you’ve taken the time to click on the suggestions, you’ll notice a trend with some (if not majority) of the products. They mostly come from a company called Earthley WellnessThis company has been an answered prayer and the end of an almost two-year journey of finding a company that is true to the calling of creating 100% pure, clean, and natural products.

If you’re interested in learning more about why I trust this company so much, and what sets them apart from the other hundreds of wellness businesses out there, click hereYou may also notice that I’m an Earthologist, too! That’s a fancy way of saying that I’m an Affiliate/Representative with them. But no worries, they are not an MLM and we only get a percentage of those who order using our link!

(Thanks in advance if you choose to order using my link! It helps this mama help her hubby pay bills!)

In the meantime, feel free to reach out to me with any questions you may have. If you’re interested in trying Earthley Wellness, I can hook you up with a complimentary consultation and product suggestion list! Simply click here and fill out our contact form!

Here’s to healthy, holistic pregnancies – and beyond!

CHIME IN: What are your go-to products for fostering a healthy, holistic pregnancy? Let me know in the comments below! I’d love to hear from you!

Homebirth & Motherhood, Spiritual

The Birth Story of Mordekai

The journey started early Spring with a faint-positive pregnancy test, and yet another surprise from Abba. My husband and I had mutually agreed that we would not prevent conception, although we are not planning either. It’s funny to see people’s faces when they ask how many children we plan on having, and we respond with however many God blesses us with! 🙂

From the conception of our daughter five years ago, our research to all-natural births started. This took us down the path to everything from homebirths and midwives to natural remedies and doulas (and everything in between). We are forever grateful for this journey because with each pregnancy, labor, and birth – it gets better and better! Not to mention, our faith grows stronger and stronger!

Most people think we are crazy. Others think we are being irresponsible. And there are those who actually express their deep desire in wanting to experience a natural childbirth, but couldn’t for whatever reason. Regardless of what others think, we know that our choice to do homebirths is for us. Our choice to have an educated, unassisted pregnancy and homebirth is for us.

Yes, you read that right… an educated, unassisted pregnancy and homebirth. It is not for everyone. Without going down the path of stating the obvious, there are many reasons why some women have to utilize modern medicine care (regardless of the reason), and that’s okay. You will not read any mom-shaming here. Quite frankly, this isn’t about anyone else but our family, and our choice to birth how we see fit.

Okay…. at this point you are probably wondering, “so how did the birth of Mordekai go?” It went like this….

Braxton Hick’s contractions were my best friend since the second trimester. They were nothing new and I knew they were prepping my body for the grand finale. As weeks went on, my body definitely showed it’s age (thirty-something LOL), but I attempted to embrace that as well. I must admit that I didn’t workout near as much as past pregnancies, and I actually enjoyed my late night cookies and milk snacks.

As the due date of December 4th approached, I grew more and more anxious at the thought of my bundle arriving “early, as expected, or late”. You see, my first born was a planned induction (I will NEVER do that again) at 38 weeks…. our daughter was a successful homebirth at 40+2 and actually ended in a transport that resulted in a DNC to get the rest of the placenta out that caused PPH (too much midwife intervention)…. and our second son was a successful and perfect unassisted homebirth at 39 weeks (the midwife didn’t make it to the birth in time)….

Thirty-nine weeks came and went. Then forty weeks came. It was 7ish in the morning on  Monday, December 4th when I started having contractions that seemed to stick around. Not like the prodromal labor I experienced last pregnancy, but more like the progressing “real thing” that I experienced with our daughter. One after the other, I was convinced that this would be the day that we would finally meet our baby.

I attempted to go about the day as normal but finally told my husband that I needed to be able to just labor. Instantly, he kicks into super Dad mode and takes over the kiddos. They were surprisingly AMAZING at watching me labor (as I needed Daddy to squeeze me hips with each contraction as they grew stronger). They took turns rubbing my back and talking to me, although my oldest (10 year old) was a little shocked and partly upset that he couldn’t understand the pain.

As contractions progressed, it actually worked perfectly because as I approached transition, the kiddos were laying down for their naps. At this time, it’s about 11ish AM and I had been relaxing and riding the waves in a bathtub full of warm water for about 30 minutes. This helped ease the contractions some, but I looked at my husband and told him to get the pillows and towels because I was getting out. In my mind, I was determined to start riding these waves with the thought of meeting our bundle sooner rather than later. In other words… I was going to start pushing.

And I did.

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The next wave came and I totally relaxed everything and “beared down” as most would say. From there, it was the point of no return. The next wave sent me into an army crawl position (which is funny because afterward, my husband asked where I was going, LOL). Then back up on all four’s I went with another couple of waves and pushes. That’s when Dr. Dad said he could see the baby coming and “it” (at the time we didn’t know gender) appeared to still be en caul. He tried to break the bag then but couldn’t get a grip. I reached back and instantly realized how slippery, but tough the sac actually was. I got a good grip of baby’s head and pulled while pushing the baby out into Daddy’s arms. By the time his body was out, the sac tore open.

“IT’S A BOY!!!” Bryan cried out. I sat back in instant relief and started to enjoy the fact that we just had our bundle of joy. Lots of questions went through my head about his color (which was normal), his size (which was normal), his lack of instant crying (which was normal), and so on…. but Bryan reassured me that everything was okay and went to get the things we needed to finish up (umbilical cord ring, scissors, bowl, etc.).

While waiting for the umbilical cord to stop pulsing, baby and I hopped back in the bathtub to relax and start the process of nursing. At this point, I was incredibly relieved but still knew that I had to deliver the placenta… which is something we had not done by ourselves before (yet). Sure enough, by the time the cord stopped pulsing and we got the ring on his umbilical cord, it was time to push again. I delivered the placenta with grace and ease into a bowl and felt even better.

The rest of the story consists of a shower, freshening up, and basking in the fact that we just had an amazing educated, unassisted pregnancy and homebirth!

It’s amazing how our bodies know exactly what to do. They are truly designed and made to function in ways that far exceed anything that can be understood at times, and I’m thankful for trusting YHWH to guide us during such an incredible experience.

It took us a few days to finally decide on a name and get stats, but here they are:

 

CHIME IN: I hope you have enjoyed reading the birth story of Mordekai. I’d love to hear your birth story too! If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! I’m not a doctor, and don’t claim to be; however, any credible info I have, I don’t mind passing along!

 

Special thanks to the Unassisted Pregnancy & Childbirth Facebook group, In His Hands Birth Supplies, and Herb Lore for your generous and gracious support throughout our journey!

 

Until next time, be blessed!

Homebirth & Motherhood

My Top 7 Must-Have’s for Labor & Delivery

You may have been able to deduce from previous posts that we are a homebirthing kinda family. So as we prepare for our third homebirth, I wanted to share my top seven must-have’s for labor and delivery.

Even if this labor and delivery goes just as fast as the last one (30 minutes from transition to holding baby), the items I talk about below will definitely come in handy!

Music

I love music, and I love what it has added to my last two labor and birthing experiences. I don’t necessarily make a special playlist; however, I do have a couple of apps ready with music that I listen to frequently.

Last baby, I actually went through two days of prodromal labor… so every time it kicked in, I kicked on the music and allowed it to help me relax through the intense waves. Something that is pretty funny, though, is after a certain point of labor, the music has to go! LOL! But up until that point, it is definitely a relaxing and comforting aid for me.

A Warm Bath

It’s so funny how you can plan things out, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will happen exactly how you plan it. Case in point…. last baby, hubby started to run the bath water, only to deter to get ready to catch the baby!

I didn’t actually get in the tub until after the birth, but it was nice to have it there waiting for me and baby! Not sure how it will happen this time, but best believe there will be a warm bath involved!

Essential Oils

My go-to essential oils are lavender, geranium, and frankincense. There are lots of others that some mothers choose to incorporate; however, these three are good enough for me. Again, it doesn’t mean that I’ll be able to use them like I want to but to have them on hand is awesome.

I use lavender to support a calming atmosphere. Geranium is used on my abdomen to support a nice transition from birthing baby to birthing the afterbirth. Frankincense is used to “anoint” baby.

If you are interested to learn about the essential oil brand we use here. Psst… save $10 on your first order (you’re welcome)!

Towels

For my first homebirth, three years ago, our  midwife gave us a list of things to have prepared for her. On that list was no less than 10 towels. I laugh about that now because two births later and we have still yet to use even more than two.

Last birth we only used one… the one my husband wrapped in the baby in after he delivered him. Towels aren’t too far out of reach, but once the action starts, I’ll definitely have at least one in arms reach.

Cord Clamp/Tie

Cord clamps are a must for us when cutting the umbilical cord. We like to leave the cord unclamped until it has turned white and stopped pulsating. This lets us know that our baby has received all the blood and nutrients the placenta had to give.

I am strongly considering going the homemade tie(s) route as many of my homebirth mama friends have said not only is it sentimental to make for baby, but it is also less likely to snag on diapers, be bulky, and cause infection issues.

Maternity Pads

These are a must for sure! Yes, they are bulky. Yes, they remind me of boats. Never the less, they are needed for several days (sometimes even weeks). I am opting in for a couple boxes of Natracare because they have organic cotton cover, are perfume and plastic free, biodegradable, and made of natural materials.

Stretch Briefs

These are LIFE! At first, I didn’t know that these were washable and reusable! This time, I know better and will hang on to these awesome briefs! Basically, these are mesh panties made from nylon material. I’ll have at least 3-5 pair of these on hand.

Where to Find These Must-Have’s

There are several places you can find these items; however, I like to do all my shopping in one place. In His Hands Birth Supply is where I conveniently shop online for everything I mentioned above (except for items I have on hand at home). Ordering these items at least 4-6 weeks out will guarantee that you’ll receive them before the birth of baby!

This about sums up my “in-arms-reach” list of items I like to have on hand for my labors and deliveries. Keep in mind that there is preparing for baby to arrive (click here for that post), and there will be postpartum things to do as well.

CHIME IN: What are some of your must-have items for labor and delivery? Where do you purchase them? And, how do you prepare for your labor and delivery?

New to homebirthing?

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Homebirth & Motherhood, Spiritual

Our Journey to Homebirthing

Mention the word homebirth, and you may catch a few side eyes. But in most recent days, I have found that more and more people are actually supportive of it!

Funny thing is, four years ago when we decided to have a homebirth with our precious baby girl, the resistance was through the roof. We were questioned from all angles – as if there wasn’t already enough doubt and wonder about the possibility.

Coming From Trauma

When my husband and I conceived, I knew I was ready to be a mother again. You see, almost seven years before, I had a very traumatic experience… one that left me scarred, damaged, and saying “hell no” to having more children.

The pregnancy of my firstborn was pure bliss. It was everything and more. I was healthy, taught gymnastics, and worked in the school system up until 3 weeks before having him. I was a happy preggo lady.

On the other end of that happiness were the “normal” doctor visits, all the tests, ultrasounds, and doctor-led coaching (so to speak). What I mean is that I didn’t know what I was doing, nor did I know what to expect… so naturally, I went with the flow.

If the doctor said I needed a test, I took the test. If he said yay, I said okay. When it came close to the end, the doctor laid the suggestion of having a “planned birth” on the table. I even remember him mentioning about being out of town around my due date and the possibility of another doctor delivering my baby.

I didn’t question it and actually found it cool (at the time) to be able to pick my son’s birthday. Since all but one of my nieces and nephews were born on the 3rd of a month, I thought “how cool would it be to plan for my son to be born on the 3rd of a month too?”

I didn’t know at the time that I was making the biggest mistake of my life. I chose November 3rd which meant he was going to be taken two weeks early.

I didn’t know that what was talked about as something normal, and that happens all the time, would end up in me being put to sleep, having an emergency c-section, bleeding severely from where he cut me open, and my 6lb 14oz son being put in the NICU with breathing trouble and a feeding tube.

I didn’t realize that it would be almost 20 hours before I’d hold my son for the first time because I was too doped up and weak to walk. I didn’t take into account the missed first moments, being able to breastfeed, and the natural flow of childbirth gracing my body… until four years ago.

From Traumatized to Empowered

Four years ago, I became empowered. I became educated. And I became aware.

First and foremost, I was empowered to understand the natural side of childbirth from a biblical point of view. Then I wanted to hear other success stories, and talk to midwives and doulas.

I became educated about the truth behind the statistics we are fed in hospitals by doctors who, let’s be honest, see a lot of dollar signs behind pregnancies, labors, and deliveries… especially the ones that put even more money on the table. For the record, I’m not saying that every doctor is like this… but I’d be a fool to think that most aren’t.

Then, I became aware of what my body could do. It’s a fact that my body could have a natural vaginal birth after a c-section. It’s a fact that my body knew exactly what to do during labor. And it’s also a fact that my baby knew what to do through the natural birthing process.

As with any journey, you live and you learn. With my first HBAC, it all didn’t quite go how we originally planned. We were new to this whole thing, and we trusted (and still do) the direction of our amazing midwife.

Yes, I was still hanging on to some fear from the first birth. Yes, I was nervous. Still, I got my homebirth. And I also got deliverance from the hidden emotions that were still holding me from the first traumatic birthing experience.

Second Homebirth Bliss & Third Homebirth Peace

My second homebirth was truly a piece of cake. I had prodromal labor for a couple days so by the time little man was coming for real, I didn’t have time to freak out. The midwife didn’t have time to get there, and my husband slipped into Dr. Dad without thinking twice. He delivered our son on our bathroom floor with no complications what so ever. It was beautiful. Simply beautiful.

This go around… I don’t have any plans. I don’t have a set way it needs to happen, and I’m not going to make any. If I learned anything from the last two homebirths its this: choosing the natural way means releasing everything you think should happen and go with the flow of how things will happen. I remind myself of that any time I feel like I need to dream up a way this labor and birth should happen.

Nope. Stop it. To choose natural means just that… let everything happen naturally. It’s all the intervention, preconceived notions of how something should be, and all the coaching of how it will happen a certain way that leads moms to freaking out about childbirth and seeing it as a medical procedure versus something that Yahweh blessed since before creation!

So… yeah… that’s our journey to homebirthing in a nutshell.

CHIME IN: what are your thoughts about homebirthing? Biased or not, I want to hear from you! What are your experiences with it? Do tell in the comments below!

Support for Your Journey

Are you embarking on the homebirth journey? Whether it’s your first, second, third (or more) time having a homebirth, support is key. I’m available to serve you in several capacities and would love to link arms with you!

If interested in my mentoring and consulting services, fill out the form below and I’ll contact you within 24 hours!