I am 34 weeks pregnant today. As we approach "due date" more and more people have inquired about the birth of our daughter. To those who don't know I'm planning a home birth in the water they are surprised and inquisitive, for the people who already know of this plan they just have questions about the hows, whys and wheres. So here are some of the details.
I am planning a home birth in the water. My midwife will start seeing me at home at week 36.
Supplies: I ordered a birth kit online through my midwife. It includes the "piddle pads" used at the hospital, that blue mucous suker outtie thing, a paper measuring tape, the ohhh so sexy mesh underwear, a cord clamp and my favorite items 2 bendy straws (I don't think I want to know what those are for!) and a bunch of other items that the midwife includes in her personalized kit. It arrived last week and waiting to join the rest of the supplies.
Can I use my bathtub? Well I could, it's deep enough but not wide enough and the bathroom as a whole isn't big enough to accommodate Phillip, me, the midwife and birth assistant. So we are renting a tub. You can buy what are essentially kiddie pools but they can't take hot water. The next step up are more durable kiddie pools that you can put hot water in and cover with a sleeping bag or quilt until ready to use to maintain the water temperature. We have chosen to go with the next higher grade tub that plugs in and has a heater to keep the water warm. It is 5' in diameter, 24" high and rents for $250.
Where is the hospital? In case of the need to be transferred the hospital is literally around the corner. I clocked it on the way home tonight and it is 1/2 a mile from our driveway. The firehouse is across the street. I'm not worried about needing their services or being caught in a precarious situation that hampers us from getting there quickly.
Where will Sophia be during all of this? I have no problem with Sophie witnessing this miracle of birth, Phillip is a bit more hesitant. So our rough plan is that if I am in labor during daycare hours she'll be there. If it's the middle of the night, we'll let her sleep. If it is a weekend she can hopefully play with the neighbor's kids for a bit or my mom, sister, or good friend can occupy her or take her somewhere else for a bit. The midwife suggested if she is around while I'm in labor and she is okay with it, not stressed, not causing me stress let it ride. Some kids get freaked out, some kids are cool with it. We'll just play it by ear.
Won't she hear you? I confirmed with Phillip that when giving birth to Sophie, I never screamed or moaned in agony. I think this time around may be even less vocal. We'll see.
Where will Dolly (the beagle) be during all of this? Probably where she is most all of the time, day or night. Asleep, on the couch.
Do you actually give birth to the baby in the water? Yes, if I want. The water is great for labor-it's relaxing, calming, and can help ease some of the pain associated with labor. Additionally, you can actually birth the baby directly into the water. Since the baby is still breathing via umbilical cord it doesn't need the air right away to breathe. So you can let the baby gently come through the water and then out of the water before it will take it's first breath.
What questions do you have about home birth or water birth?