The Fifth Home Birth
I was blessed to be a witness of a birth that is the most thought provoking one for me so far. First, the parents were planning another hospital birth after their first born, a son, was born there. However mom had a feeling she wanted to do things a different way. She got in touch with a childbirth educator, who brought her to a talk featuring Midwife; Selena Green from Hale Kealaula.
From her first words of introduction she had tears. Tears for what she knew she wanted for her baby and for herself with this birth and the feeling of not having an option or support brought the tears.
Luckily she continued to go back to learn more about cloth diapering and took a childbirth education class, which only empowered her thoughts of birthing out of the hospital.
She connected with Selena again and she and her husband decided to birth with her and at Hale Kealaula. They came to their first Centering Pregnancy group, which brings together all the families birthing with Selena and talking about their experiences and thoughts/questions. At their second, it branched into a father’s group and a moms group, so both got more information and confirmation they were doing what was right for them.
Mom and dad were a little nervous when they first arrived and anxious too. He did well listening when we let him know he could rest and provided her with comfort measures and reassuring words when she needed them. There came a time when mom needed to let go and surrender but her fear and desire for it to be over NOW made progress slow for a little while. But Selena let her know that she would have to be patient and that she was safe and cared for her in that place where she felt vulnerable. She got to the place of being in the trance and pushed her baby girl out in the caul in only 30 minutes, with dad there to catch his first daughter on Father’s day.
As soon as baby girl was born, her grandfather called (the only call that came in) from the continent asking to see how mom was doing. He was greeted by the first cries of his first grand-daughter.
A little while later, dad shared his thoughts about the differences he noticed between having had his son in the hospital and his daughter at the birth home. He first mentioned that of course the drugs were not there, so the availability of them to be brought up and used was not an issue (nor would it be offered several times throughout the birth). This made him think about the differences in the way his babies were treated when they first arrived. His son, was limp and didn’t respond right away and had to be taken to the warmer immediately after birth. We know this is in large part due to the epidural and pitocin given to mom and not only that but the handling of his babies was VERY different. He understood now that giving baby to mom right away makes the most sense, after all she had been in her mother for nine months and would be comforted by her smell, heartbeat and breathing sounds. Where as his son was jostled and handled like a piece of meat and not given to his wife until much later after he was born. Even the temperament difference in his two babies at birth, he saw that his daughter was much more content, where his son was crying more and seemed under stress…dad had been a skeptic from the beginning and it wasn’t until he saw and felt with his own two eyes and heart, that they had made a great decision and the one that made them both feel more content.
Mom got to speak with her mother after the birth, who also happens to be a NICU nurse. Of course most of her fear and anxiety came from her mother telling her the horror stories she sees in the NICU every day and just the shear number of them. After the birth however, her mother shared that she was glad she had chosen to have baby at the birth home, where the hospital couldn’t interfere. For that week at the hospital she worked at, she had seen a few babies who had been so mishandled by the hospital that they ended up going to the NICU because of it.
A few hours after baby was born, the family slept, mom showered and ate and they packed up their belongings and went home to share their new baby with the family and big brother (who wouldn’t eat breakfast cause he was worried about mommy).
This may not sound like an epic saga to you
When I think about that place they came from in their thoughts and fears and how mom persevered and dad trusted his wife, how beliefs were changed and molded, trust was built and strengthened, a family gained a member and the world stepped ONE BIRTH closer to LOVE, PEACE and normalizing nature, can’t think of a greater story.