I knew I wanted a home birth before I was even pregnant. This was my 3rd baby and number 2 had been 1.45 hours labour start to finish, we barely made it to the hospital in time.
So this time it made sense to be at home, especially as we’d moved to the country and were further from childcare and the hospital.
My husband took some convincing (his 1st baby) so I bought him a book which he found really helpful.
I really wanted our other children to be part of it (if they wanted to be) and not to be worried or scared, but also to be part of the bonding immediately after the birth. Their involvement in the labour process helped them to not be worried and also to bond with Finlay when he arrived. I bought them a book (hello baby) to help explain things which they loved. They were 4 and 7.
My labour began with my waters breaking at about 6.30am (waking me) and labour pains within about 15 mins of that. I rang the hospital and told them things had started and that I was fine to labour for now without the midwives.
We went downstairs and set up the bed I’d made. (Some decorators polythere sheeting, a layer of puppy pads taped together, a layer of old duvet, a layer if old towels. The idea was to take layers away as mess increased)
I put it on the floor and over the puff so I could lean or sit on it. Hubby made me a cuppa and the children came down. We told them today was the day! It was so calm and exciting!
Hubby made them breakfast while I contracted away, they kept all shouting “are you alright!” It was really funny. I’d put friends on the tv. Hubby also put a joint of pork in the slow cooker as family were due for Sunday lunch.
At about 8.30am I decided that things had ramped up enough to call the midwife to come and assess us. She arrived at about 9.15 and spent about 45 mins with us setting up her things and assessing me.
She asked if we’d like her to stay but I said I was happy for her to leave and come back later as things seemed steady.
She reassured me she’d stay local (on rounds) and come back as soon as we called.
So off she went and we all had lots of fun trying to remember to press the boost button on my tens machine and to time my contractions (the children’s jobs which they loved).
I went to the toilet between most contractions and they’d all sit on the stairs shouting through the door to make sure I was ok, which really was funny!
By about 10.30 contractions were running into eachother and we’d put maleficent on the tv. We called the midwife to come back and on her way she called the 2nd one to join us.
She got to us quickly and asked Martin how long I’d been pushing, which was when I realised I was. But not properly, I asked if I should stop but she said to do what my body told me to so I carried on but with more force now.
The kids by this point were watching the TV but kept asking the odd question and fetching biscuits for the midwife.
She got her gloves on and a quick check and my position, now kneeling against the puff pushing hard, told her the baby was coming.
She let me carry on and reminded me to breath a bit. Checking very now and again that baby was coming and not stuck. One of these checks highlighted that he was coming elbow 1st which felt very odd, the ring of fire bit didn’t happen that way!
Within 10 seconds of knowing that, he was here!
Hubby held my hands and and helped me focus through it all. He checked the baby’s sex and cut the cord (after 10mins) blinking back tears. It was beautiful to see him so happy. He was 39 and thought he’d never have kids but wanted them desperately. I was so happy I could give him the ultimate treasure in life!
The second midwife arrived.
The older 2 came over for a look and hugs with us all, before the cord was cut, the midwife aided all of this guiding the children carefully given that the placenta was yet to come.
It was a magical moment to watch them all meet each other, Jack and Belle were enthralled and they just beamed!! He bonded us all within seconds of being born, more than I ever thought possible!
It was 11.45am
Once the placenta had come and the kids had a quick lesson on placentas from the midwives, and we’d had skin to skin (all of us in turn). The midwife moved me to the sofa on puppy pads and she measured and weighed finlay and handed him back to snuggle for eternity.
They then cleared everything into a bin bag which they put out with the bins and did their final checks of me and Finlay and they left untill the early eve when they returned to check on how we were doing with feeding.
At around 12.30 hubbys sister and her family arrived for their scheduled Sunday dinner. It was amazing! They came in and spotted Finlay laying next to me and squealed quietly and came for a look and cuddles, a few mins later his mum came and the same happened with her, it was so lovely to surprise them like that!
Once they’d had cuddles and we’d all had a cuppa. We text the rest of the family and told them they were welcome to come and visit. By 2pm we had 24 people in the house, it was amazing! I got waited on hand and foot and everyone was gushing at us all, the kids loved being able to show off their shiny new brother to everyone!
Martin managed to get veg and roasties cooked and we all had a roast dinner together (all who were still here at about 6pm) which was just what I needed at that time since my tummy had dropped and I was starving!
People started leaving and we put the kids to bed (it was Sunday).
We had a relaxed evening and went to bed. It was amazing to not be restricted by visiting hours!
The next day we all did the school run together, Jack and Belle were so excited to show Finlay off. I cried from happiness so much those few days.
A birth is always beautiful but a homebirth, if you can have one, is the birth of a family in a deeper sense. I firmly believe that our bonds are far deeper because we were all in it together from start to finish.