Megan shares her experience of having a home birth and why it appealed to her.
I had my first little boy in hospital in 2012 and had a really positive experience, but I just knew that I would have been more relaxed and comfy if I’d have stayed at home to give birth. The worst part of the whole labour was travelling to hospital and having contractions in the lift! When I got pregnant again in 2015 I started reading about homebirths and the idea of not having to go anywhere to give birth really appealed to me. I got referred to the Homebirth Team and they were so incredibly supportive about birthing at home and birth in general that I felt totally reassured.
When I was a week overdue I felt I was probably going to be the first person to be pregnant forever! I went to bed feeling pretty despondent and when I woke in the morning not having gone into labour (again) I was very annoyed. As I got up I felt a little trickle of water and noticed that my waters had started leaking. I made my little boy his breakfast and as I was doing so I started getting quite mild contractions. My husband was still in bed and as I went to wake him up the contractions started getting stronger so that I couldn’t think while they were happening. I called the midwife and said that I thought I was in labour but it was still early and she probably didn’t need to come out. The midwife said that as my waters were leaking she would come out and see me anyway, and I’m really glad she did! I thought I’d better start recording the time between my contractions and I was really confused when they seemed to be about 3 minutes apart, I’d only been in labour for about 30 mins, surely that couldn’t be right!
I went upstairs as I couldn’t cope with anyone being around me and just needed peace and quiet. Soon the midwife arrived and when she saw me she said she was going to call for the second midwife and that I wouldn’t be long. My husband asked if he had time to take my little boy swimming as we’d planned, and the midwife said, best not to.
My husband started setting up the birth pool with my little boy’s help, while he arranged for him to be collected by a family friend. I knew he would be too much of a distraction for me if he was in the house. My contractions were getting stronger and closer together and the midwife stayed with me upstairs.
Once my little boy had been collected, I went downstairs to where the birth pool was. Unfortunately it wasn’t ready in time and as I suddenly needed to push the midwife made me a little spot next the pool and I got down on my knees and started pushing. The second midwife arrived in the middle of my pushes and she knelt down in front of me and was so lovely and calming, I just held onto her.
After a couple of minutes Toby’s head was born and then one push later his body came out and I scooped him up to my chest. It was absolutely incredible. I don’t think you ever forget that feeling of catching your own baby. After a couple of minutes we both got into the pool to deliver the placenta which was still attached to Toby.
Once we were all sorted I went upstairs and found the midwives had made up my bed with a waterproof mat and an old duvet for us to sit on. As I needed some stitches, the midwife did them for me on the bed and it was such a lovely relaxed and chatty atmosphere. The whole labour was about 2.5 hours from start to finish and my favourite bit was the fact we were just at home and relaxed for the whole thing. I think if I’d planned for a hospital birth I would have given birth in the car!