My Homebirth story in Melbourne
Prior to my pregnancy with Van my beautiful little boy, I miscarried at 13 weeks pregnant. Only 6 weeks later we were lucky enough to fall pregnant again. However, it wasn’t until well into the 2nd trimester I realized I hadn’t let go of the fear around losing another baby. Up until I was 24 weeks pregnant, I had hidden this pregnancy from many people, out of pure fear something would happen to my baby. Once I realized what I had been unconsciously doing and that me and my baby were safe, I really started to surround myself with positive stories, I focused on letting go of fear through meditation and would dream and manifest of meeting my baby and having the most positive birth outcome I could.
I had always entertained the idea of having a homebirth. For me, the thought of a homebirth felt like my safe space.
But, after many conversations with my husband, we decided that for our first baby we would find a happy medium where we both felt comfortable and that was to do shared care, meaning we would labour at home with our midwives and then go to the hospital to give birth.
Our midwives were absolutely beautiful and the knowledge they shared gave us great comfort. We felt so safe with them after just a few appointments and, I had so much trust in my body that at 20 weeks pregnant both my husband and I decided we would have a home birth.
On the night of my due date I started experiencing contractions. They were far apart and very manageable. Not knowing what my birth would entail I decided to layout on the couch and let me hubby Macca go to bed to get some much-needed sleep before the real fun began. At 4 am the contraction pains had started ramping up, they were all in my lower back, so I woke Macca and he put the tens machine on me which I absolutely loved as a natural pain relief option.
By 7 am the midwives were around to check on me. I was told I was in early labour and still had a long way to go so rest up and stay well hydrated.
I started sipping on herbal teas and tinctures I had to help support my contractions, increase my stamina and provide calming effects.
At 11 am I rang my chiropractor and asked if she had time for an adjustment. My chiro had seen me throughout my entire pregnancy and when I walked in at 11 am she asked, “are you ok?” I replied “I’m great, I’m in labour” she laughed because she couldn’t believe how calm I was at this point. My contractions were still quite far apart but after an adjustment with Kirby, they almost instantly became 5 minutes apart. At this point, my midwives came back as the said my labour had begun. We had decided that as well as the midwives we would have my mum as another support person, so she had arrived after a 3-hour drive with a boot full of food and was ready to support me and Macca and anticipate the wait of the newest little addition to our family.
We live in an old Victorian house in inner Melbourne. We have creaky floors, thin walls, and an outside toilet. It was a cold and raining winters day which made for fun every time I needed to go to the toilet. I would come back inside dripping wet, only to need to go back out half an hour later to tackle the weather again. I had a blew up pool set up in the loungeroom, birthing affirmations pinned up around the room, candles burning, my salt lamp on and my ‘labour playlist’ on repeat. My dog Kevin laid by the pool the entire labour and birth, while my mum happily made cups of tea and fed the midwives. It was the most blissful set up I could have asked for.
I was in labour for 11 hours still using the tens machine as my pain relief and when I needed a break I would hop in the pool and let the warm water wash over me as I reset my mind and continued to labour. At 11 pm I felt the need to poop, I trekked out in the rain to the outside toilet with Macca guiding me and within an instant of sitting down, I heard a pop and my waters had broken. I went back inside to cheering midwives as the pushing phase had begun. Little to my knowledge our next-door neighbours were sitting up with the popcorn, timing my contractions, waiting for baby Mac to arrive. I wasn’t kidding when I said we had thin walls haha. I hoped in the pool and for the next hour I pushed. One of my midwives guided my breath and helped me focus while the other continued to monitor bubs heartbeat. After 45 minutes bub was crowning. My midwives told me to place my hands down on my vagina and feel the top of my baby’s head. And, with the touch of his head I had the instant motivation to push through my exhaustion to meet my baby.
With one more big push my baby entered the water and was swept up onto my chest. The feeling and emotions that flooded over me were like nothing I had ever experienced.
5 or so minutes had passed and finally someone said, “is it a boy or a girl?” we turned our baby over to be delighted with a baby boy. He was the most perfect thing I had ever seen. I was then popped up onto the couch with my baby on my chest still attached to the placenta. My husband cuddling us both in amazement. We remained there until my cord stopped beating and it was time to cut the cord and birth my placenta. I handed my husband our baby and he continued skin on skin contact while I stood up and in a bucket the midwives were holding under me, I birthed my placenta.
I had manifested my birth for months leading up to it.
My husband would often look over and laugh at me as I sat on the couch crying with happiness at the thought of holding our baby. I went into my birth dreaming of my ideal birth outcome but being opened to adapt to whatever was thrown our way.
I truly believe our babies will enter the world however they need to begin their life too and I never let this thought escape me. But, never in my wildest dreams did I expect it to be everything I had visualised and so much more.
To my midwives at Mama in Kensington Melbourne, you were a blessing. Our experience was everything we could have dreamed of and so much more. With baby number two on the way, we are so excited to do it all over again.