Monday, October 24

on why home birth is not for me

i have been known to talk about my love for natural childbirth a bit. the business of being born? one of my favorite flicks, for sure. i am excited to go into labor, i am excited for the opportunity to labor naturally again. some people think i'm crazy. and some people wonder why i'm not doing, what they may call, the even more naturally way? at home.

first things first, i wouldn't say i'm an advocate for a natural, unmedicated birth. i would say i'm an advocate for what you feel is best for you and your baby. i felt this way was best with both the boys. if all goes as i would love it to, i would love to take that journey on the out-of-body-experience-of-wonder road again, but it's not really up to me. i could need an emergency c-section. my baby could be breech. you never know, really. there are many women who long for the opportunity to have a vaginal birth and aren't able to. i don't take my two birthing experiences for granted. i think they have changed me, and made me stronger.

baby brody and his sweet daddy

it's hard for me to describe what labor and delivery is truly like. i love talking with women who have gone drug-free as well. we can laugh about it now, but we weren't laughing then, were we? it is sort of this spiraling into a complete surrender to the pain that brings me to a place i have only visited twice. a place i am praying to go to again. has there ever been such a gripping (and ripping…ahem.), changing, becoming, surreal, twisting, turning experience other than childbirth? i crave to do it again, i crave the natural-ness of it, the wholeness of it, the empowerment of it, the thrill of it.

so why not at home? isn't that the most natural way to go? i am asked by many in the midwife lovin', natural birth having, medicine free paths i cross. i think home birth is such an awesome option and opportunity for birth, it's just not for me.

here's my reasons.

first up, let me tell you about my amazing, wonderful, heavenly, friend when i am in labor. the birthing tub. this massive pool of warm water that is jetting out at me and bringing relief to those radiating contractions. i do not have a bath tub of this nature in my home, or one even close. i realize you can buy or rent these, but i also don't have $350 laying around to go to a birthing tub. nor the space for it. i am pretty sure most people in america have a standard size bathtub…except the burkleos. i don't even get in my tub to take a bath, let alone to labor in. the thought of me laboring in it actually makes me mildly nauseas, along with providing me a hysterical mental image. and to not labor in the water is seriously not even an option.

foster's first moments

my husband just ain't as good as the midwife and nurses at pushing on that pressure point above my butt. you do know about that pressure point, don't you? your life will be changed, my friends. changed, i tell you. when the nurse was pushing on that pressure point my contraction was literally taken away. is there a better gift for a woman in labor? i think not. then she has caleb try, i peer over my shoulder and look at him like the frazzled naked woman that i am and tell him to move on over, he's not even close. fact of the matter is, my husband isn't trained to do that. mmmkay?

next up, i need help from various individuals. help walking to the bathroom, help getting in and out of the shower, help from the nurses if i have a question, help from the lactation consultant, who is the only one who can get the babe to latch at that time. help, help, help. you name it, i need it.

the large cups filled with crushed ice and cranberry juice cocktail. i'm addicted.

space! our house is little, just over 1000 square feet and two kiddos already in it. it's their happy place, our home. where they sleep and play the best. transporting them somewhere else would have to happen. some people like their children them watch them give birth, i however do not. gimme my own space, puhlease.

the nasty, bloody truth is that i don't want to clean up after i give birth. i don't want to have our house become a hot mess when i could come home to a clean and orderly place. i don't want to be bleeding the next 48 hours in my own bed. i just don't. i don't want to provide and prepare the hose, the tub, the clean up, the tucks pads, and the granny mesh underwear. i want it all handed to me. and i want to swipe as many pampers swaddles diapers from the hospital as i can. not to mention, it's the big bucks to buy all the supplies we need for birthing at home.

can i tell you a gross funny story? okay, good.

after i had foster i was so frightened to get up and go the bathroom because of how awful it was the first time around. when i first stood up after giving birth to brody i just about collapsed and it's a darn good thing two nurses and my husband were there to catch me and give me smelling salts. i had to pee so bad but couldn't figure out how to. that is a true story. so, after i gave birth to foster i kept exclaiming, i have to pee! to which the nurses said, we can help you to the bathroom and i said, standing up is not an option in my life right now. so they told me to just pee. just pee right there, danielle. we'll clean it up, it's totally fine. i'm all, for realz!? i love you and i love that you just said that. so, after a little work to get things going, i did just that. peed all over the bed, and then the nurses cleaned me and my bed up, got me some nice clean, fresh sheets and i relaxed with my baby boy. that right there? that's why i love my birthing center so much.

all this being said, if i didn't have the midwife services, support, and amazing childbirth center that i have, i might think differently about home birth for me.

but, because i have that…bring on the labor…. in 18 weeks that is.


  1. Thanks for the post! I had an awful, traumatic delivery 5 months ago and I'm spending lots of time on the internets trying to figure out a better plan for next time. I love the honesty and stories you're willing to share. Thank you!

  2. having done a home birth and a hospital birth i totally get what you're saying. though, i do MUCH prefer the home experience, you have to do what feels best for you.

    p.s. to anyone who is curious about home birth supplies.... all of our birthing supplies were provided for us for $100.00 they came in a kit that we ordered and they included the sweet mesh undies. and, thankfully, my midwife and doula cleaned everything up for us. that helps so much!

  3. love this! You describe natural childbirth so beautifully. I decided just a few weeks before I delivered my little girl that I wanted to go natural. It was the most incredible, indescribable experience and I can TOTALLY relate to the strange but true desire to do it again. I recently told someone that motherhood has given me a new confidence- it's like I'm a better version of myself. I think of conquering childbirth with grit and ice chips alone as my entry fee into this fabulous little world I've found :)

    Thanks for sharing! Best of luck in 18 weeks!

  4. I love this!! And can relate to soo much of it! My two natural births absolutely changed me...they were hard and amazing :) Birthing at home is appealing to me, but out hospital is 45 minutes away and if there were complications that's just too long for me to feel comfortable with. I passed out completely (woke up in a wheel chair in the bathroom) because I had to go to the bathroom shortly after giving birth to my second! That kind of freaked me out!!
    Wow, this is long...sorry!! I love your stories and your honesty. So, thanks for sharing ;)

  5. Love this post!!! you are hilarious and not to mention- totally convincing!!!

  6. I loved reading this post. It had me grinning from ear to ear. I have experienced au natural childbirth for my first child and I loved every minute of it and felt completely robbed with a breeched second child diagnosed with Spina Bifida and born c-section.

    I love helping women feel empowered to try as long as they can to let their body do the work it is intended to do and then choose some drugs if needed. I'm not against them either, but love a women to feel empowered to try first.

    And, I'm with you on the whole home birth thing too for your exact same reasons....except in our 1300 small square foot home, I do have a large jetted tub...still don't want to clean up the mess though! haha

  7. Loved this post. I was disappointed that I needed a C-section for a breech baby, but we do what we have to. And I passed out during my first trip to the bathroom too. After BOTH deliveries.

  8. Great and awesome post!! After 5 children I have done it with medicine and with none. my births are fast!! I push for like 5 mins and out they come!! Also I had to be wheeled out of bathroom because of fainting:/ It is the worst feeling:(

  9. i love reading all this stuff BEFORE i get pregnant and have babies.

  10. I had my two, naturally, in the hospital. My mom is a nurse and has seen too many things go wrong in labor and delivery. I wanted to be in the hospital so that if I needed help, I would have it fast and not have to call an ambulance. I wish our hospital had a birthing center, but I did get to use a birthing ball and stool, etc. I agree with the needing help part too. I passed out when I stood up to go to the bathroom and my husband and nurse caught me before I hit the floor! And someone cleaned up the nasty blood trail that I left from the bed to the bathroom. I hear you about not having to clean it all up yourself!

    Best of luck to you and your family in this very exciting time!

  11. I'm all for natural birth if that's what you want but I do get tired of people treating those who don't want "natural" birth like they are freaks or sinners. I mean, hey, if you want to get a root canal with no pain meds that's up to you but shoot me full of drugs! Lol! My child was breech and I ended up getting the c-section I WANTED. Yes, I wanted a c-section and I was thrilled with my daughter's birth! And I was obsessed with the crushed ice and grape juice at the hospital! I could have drank gallons of it!

  12. Honesty is the best policy. You are seriously wonderful. Thanks for sharing the awesome stories!... Although hearing them definitely makes me want to never go into labor. haha

  13. Great post. Thanks for sharing & being real. I laughed a lot :)

  14. ha! 4 months ago I would have been so confused and kind of grossed out by this... now I TOTALLY get it :) You describe it so well!

  15. i can relate to sooo much of this! excited for ya....

  16. ahhhh, good to know! I'm gearing up for a hospital birth soon w/ a midwife:-) Cups of ice and pressure points, got it! xoxo

  17. I love this! I have contemplated homebirth/hospital birth. I am all about the natural way, but for some reason I think I would feel more comfortable at the hospital! I know several of the ladies who work there, and the birthing rooms are supposed to be really nice at our hospital. Thanks for this post! I feel much better about my decision! :) I will also look into the midwife services! :)
    Have a blessed day!
    Megan Jenelle @ A Blossoming Homestead

  18. This post had me laughing. I was so dependent on my nurses the two weeks after Lincoln's birth it's so embarrassing thinking about it now. I threw up all over myself in bed and they successfully changed me and my bedding without me getting out of bed or even sitting up. The first time I showered, I had to sit the whole time and have the nurse wash my hair and everything. She was a God send. Nurses are pretty much amazing :)

  19. Bwahahahaa..Im with you on everything in this post: each woman's choice(and those who try to talk down on you for differing decisions...get outta my way), the natural birth(if I thought God wanted us to have more children Id be excited about the birthing part again), and the cleanup. Dont even get me started.
    I was laughing so hard at your descriptions...the medicated pads(GLORY HALLELUJAH!) and the free diapers. Bring it on.
    My sister had her baby girl 2 weeks ago already. Can you believe her hospital didnt have a nursery? Once she had the baby, she was on her own. Id have walked out, in labor. Well, maybe.

  20. i love everything about this post.. i feel like i wrote it! i'm cracking up and nodding my head all along the way. thanks for sharing and looking forward to seeing pictures of your baby girl before long. :)


  21. AHAHAHAHAHA you are so rad. I have nothing but respect for everything you have written. to each her own! I had my 1st in the hospital w/an epidural and my 2nd at home in a giant kiddie pool - I loved being at home and honestly hope to never have to do it any other way - but I know it isn't for everyone. you go girl - you should never feel the need to apologize for your birthing choices!

  22. love this! i am all for natural childbirth and a persons choice to do what is best for them. i had my four drug free in a hospital. i have to TOTALLY agree with you on the cleanup. i just wanna come home to a clean house and not have to worry about all that! :) 18 weeks is gonna fly by! praying for you.
    mary :)

  23. love this and love you and looove all your points. Im with ya girl. Cant wait to hear your birth story in 18 weeks! im just ahead of you, have about 11 weeks left myself. oh, and yay for peeing in the bed. holla. :)

  24. homebirth isn't for everyone... but have you considered a doula? you say you need things all the time during labor that couldn't be done at home... but that is what a doula is for.. and homebirth midwives have usually a couple assistants with them at births as well... i'd say get a doula and do a homebirth! haha. no but really homebirth isn't for everybody... good luckkkkkkkk :)

  25. LOVE this post!
    my mama had me in a hospital, over thirty years ago.
    it was a horrifying experience for her.
    then she found a champion midwife and had her other three babies at home! (my sister was 10lb 12oz!)

    i would choose your way;)

    love you, to the moon!

  26. 18 weeks? that's all the time you have left? where have i been? i love this post so much. you are awesome!! eeee!

  27. Love everything you said.
    Never really thought about the clean-up.
    I had one of my babies at home. Not planned- totally a surprise, no time to get to the hospital type of deal.

    You can read it here:

    But my mom cleaned up- God bless her.
    Can't wait to read about your little girl being born.
    I love the hospital.
    I love circling what I want to eat for my meals with a little pencil.
    And I have a TV that comes off the wall with a remote.
    And having peace and quiet while I think, what am I going to do with a newborn and have I really done this before?
    I think I would stay a week if I could.

  28. I don't even like cranberry juice normally, but the hospital cranberry juice with the crushed ice is the bomb, seriously talked non stop about during my third pregnancy.

  29. I attempted homebirth and ended up (due to complications) at the hospital to finish the natural delivery. I felt as though I had the best of both worlds and ended up LOVING my hospital experience! Next baby I'm totally going back to the hospital! I LOVED having someone clean up and having your meals brought to you-everything you need right there...loved it all =) I was totally a homebirth advocate but now I truly can say I am thankful for the hospital and can recommend BOTH!

  30. ohh man.
    you guys have a birthing center near you?
    i want a birthing center! or home. i dunno.
    gosh, this post was awesome.
    and yeah...i totally would rather have everyone else cleaning up, and not have the mess in my house. hah.

  31. Hey, I wanted to leave a comment on your last blog about your headbands, but it looks like the comments are closed?

    I am having a baby shower next month and I wanted to put your bands on my registry- since you don't have an Etsy, where can I link up a page so my friends know where to go and purchase?? You can email me -


  32. your post was great! it made me laugh and made me as a nurse feel appreciated. Its amazing the we (nurses)have the opportunity to be a part of such a great memory.


  33. girl.

    i totally respect your perspective! but if, for some reason, you think about trying it, i wanted to tell you this:

    i only do water birth. my fishie pool was like $26. inflatable bottom and all. totally comfortable.

    my house was only 1,000 sq. ft, too. we had grandparents take the kids, because i'm not down with my kids being at the birth either.

    the midwives clean up! you've def done your share of work! no mess for you!

    like i said, i don't think that home birth is for everyone, and i respect that you do what is best for you...i just wanted to tell you in case you thought about it but were hindered by those things. =)

    can't wait to see that little girl!

  34. Your pee story is just funny, not gross.

    I'm going to print this post and frame it, and use it when my friends/coworkers/random strangers ask about what kind of birth I'll have. You hit everything I want to say.

  35. You made me laugh and cry and smile and amen! I had three of my four naturally (having twins naturally kind of traumatized me) so baby no. 4 had me takin' those drugs :) lol. I do love natural birth, it's amazing and I definitely prefer it.

  36. How did I miss this post. I am totally cracking up because I definitely get it.
    Birth is crazy beautiful.
    Hooray for midwifes who know super awesome tricks.

  37. oh that is hilarious about the bed.
    i get it.
    i soooo get it.

    and i completely understand the excitement of labor.
    i loved it.
    i didn't....but i did.
    it's sad i can't do it again.
    i would do it again in a heartbeat.

    and i don't think i could do it at home either.
    unless it was an emergency!

  38. I agree with every.single.reason! I feel like I could have written this post (PS I'm commenting on this old post because I'm catching up on your blog after having my 2nd babe).