Mar 22, 2009

Home Birth Questions Answered--Logistics, Etc...

Part I; Part II; Part III; Part IV; Safety

At long last, the Q/A on the logistics of home birth (including, of course, a photo of His Highness cavorting with the cheerful aquatic sea creatures during the test inflation of the kiddie pool)...

Q-- What about His Highness?
A--He will be shuttled off with a friend.

Q--What if you wanted him to be at the birth?
A--Then we would do that. We get to choose who we want present.

Q--Who do you want present?
A--Our plan is for the midwife, her assistant (who will also function as a doula), the Cat Daddy, and myself to be there.

Q--What, are you trying to shut everyone else out?
A--Yes. It’s labor, not a garden party. I concentrate best with a minimal audience.

Q--Isn’t it messy?
A--Yes & no. Birth is pretty messy no matter how you do it, but we prepare things ahead of time to minimize the mess—with help from a supply list the midwife gave us. And then the midwife & her assistant do the clean-up, laundry included—nice!

Q--When will you set up the pool? Won’t it take forever to fill?
A--Early in labor. I’m guessing it’ll take an hour or two to inflate it, fill it, and get it to temperature.

Q--How will you get the pool warm and keep it there?
A--A combination of hot water from the washing machine hookup (via a brand new drinking-water-safe garden hose) and water boiled the old fashioned way (on the stove). As it cools we'll bail some cool water & add more hot. And we'll cover it when I'm not using it to hold in the heat better.

Q--What if the weight of all the water makes the pool fall through the floor to the basement?
A--I’m nerdy enough to have done the calculations, and confident that won’t happen.

Q--How will you empty the pool?
A--We’ll siphon it (to the back yard, toilet, or bathtub) with a hose. We even bought a $7 drill pump thingy so no one has to risk a mouthful of water to get it started.

A--I know. That’s why we bought the little thingy.

Q--If your labor slows or stalls will your midwife use herbal remedies to try to help it along?
A--I think so. She’s familiar with a lot of herbal stuff used throughout pregnancy and is all for herbal remedies that have been shown to be safe & effective.

Q--What about your baby’s vital stats, birth certificate, etc.?
A--The midwife brings everything she needs to take his measurements and so on, and sends in the paperwork for the birth certificate.

Q--Do you think placentas are totally beautiful now?
A--No. Not really at all. My midwife will properly dispose of the placenta for us. We won’t be saving it, or burying it under a freshly-planted tree, or anything like that.

Q--Um, people do that?
A--Some do. We won’t.

Q--I still wouldn't want to do a home birth.
A--That's cool, as long as you know what's available. Only you can decide how & where you prefer to give birth. Empowerment, and all that.

Q--This is the most fascinating series of posts I’ve ever read. Where can I find out more?
A--A good place to start is the Citizens for Midwifery FAQ’s page. For info specifically on waterbirth, start at Waterbirth International.

Then check out my midwife’s page of links and other stuff. Lotsa really good info there.

Well kids, this concludes my planned sharing on home birth. Thanks for all the positive feedback, and feel free to dialogue and ask questions. As you can probably tell, I will talk about it endlessly if provoked.

God-willing, I'll be posting in a few weeks to tell you that everything went great and it was all I dreamed and more. Here's hoping...


linda t said...

Thanks for the info. Very interesting. Very thought-provoking.
I am so excited to hear how it all comes down... umm, literally.
You have my blessing and my prayers.
You will do great!

prochaskas said...

The pool is much bigger than it looked in the previous picture. Wish I'd been able to have a pool for laboring! Darn induction...

Rebecca said...

love the garden party comment! you are a better woman than I am. I will be induced at the hospital though am praying for you, you brave soul! tell Richard hi!!

Skerrib said...

Aw shucks, Rebecca! Different preferences, that's all. Richard says hi back.

Helly said...

I love the Q&A format of your post. And I admit to being somewhat jealous-- I hadn't heard much about water births before I had my son.

Being in a tub of warm water sounds sooooo soothing, esp now that I look back on how much my back hurt during the contractions. If we were going to have another kid (we're not) I would definitely research aquatic options! :-)

Best of luck to you!

p.s. I followed your link from John Shore's blog, in case you're wondering who this strange woman is, intruding on your blog :)