Who doesn't love a good birth story? When Gemma started my course she was 50/50 on having a homebirth, she had been told by her booking hospital they couldn't accommodate it. But after looking at the birth place study, which shows that for a low risk pregnancy your chances of a natural birth with no medical intervention is 88% at home compared with 58% on the labour ward, then learning about how your body works in labour she knew she wanted to push for it. The good news is that her baby boy arrived in the living room as planned, but he was in a rush only just making it past the 37week, full term mark.
Here she shares her story:
I was due on 18 June & hoped that with this being my first the arrival would be late. We spent Bank holiday weekend alone, assuming that this would be our last we went for a picnic where we walked across fields & then went home to watch a funny movie before an early night. I think it was this day that helped my baby decide to be born.
On 28th May at 37 weeks pregnant, I woke at 2.30 with a need to go to the toilet, I popped to the loo & noticed a cramping feeling, which I assumed was Braxton Hicks. I went back to bed but found the cramps were getting quite intense (though not too uncomfortable). I needed to wee again & when I stood up from the loo a trickle of water ran down my leg. Realising that my waters had broken I woke Dan to tell him it was happening. I stayed in the ensuite in the dark & lent against the heater to work through the surges, Dan set my relaxations to play & brought me an ice lolly, then went back to bed, as I wanted to be on my own. I did up breathing with visualisations & I was encouraged to find that it made the surges very manageable. Every time I had a moment of doubt I would use affirmations to remind myself I was ready for this. At about 3.00 Dan woke to check on me & started timing surges which were roughly 2 mins 40 seconds apart. We then called the midwife & I decided to move into the living room, so Dan prepped the it by opening the doors, closing the curtains, lighting candles & putting lavender oil in the diffuser. By 6am my surges were every 90 seconds & the feeling became much more intense with cramping at the bottom of my spine. I found myself making deep mooing sounds as I breathed out. The midwife arrived at 7am & she discreetly listened to the baby which was reassuring, then offered an internal examination which I declined. As the surges progressed I could feel the need to start pushing. The midwife asked me to get into different positions to push. I tried this approach with one leg up on a chair, then swapped legs & lying back with my legs up. I didn’t feel comfortable being on my back, so I changed to lying on my left-hand side on the sofa with my feet pushing against her & Dan’s hands. By 9.40am, after a few more pushes, my baby came, in the excitement of the moment Dan forgot he was announcing the sex, but he finally composed himself & said we had a baby boy!
Looking back I have such lovely memories of the birth, my advice to others would be to enjoy the process & remember your body was made for this so trust it to take you through the stages, it’s all worth it!