Midwives Make a House Call
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Sweet Peas, Pods & Papas: All About Birth, B@@bs & Babies

Midwives Make a House Call

Oh my gosh – our baby is really almost here!!  The reality hit home when one of our midwives and one of her students visited our home Wednesday morning.
Some reasons for the home visit:
~It’s a test run to make sure they can find the home and can plan for alternate routes if necessary.
~It gets them familiar with the “lay of the land” so that they know their way around the home during the birth.
~It gives them an opportunity to check in with the family in their own space.
~They encourage the family to invite whomever else they have invited to the birth to meet them and have the family get a sense of the “crowd”.
~It gave us the chance to talk a little more about our birth plan and any concerns we have about our birth. 
It was a little rushed since we had another appointment afterwards, and I could have kicked myself that I forgot to take pictures…ah, well.
I realized through the course of the visit that I have yet to accept that this baby is going to be born here.  That we really and truly will not have to go to the hospital this time still seems so surreal!!
It was so nice to have our former Bradley® teacher and friend Andrea here with us during the visit.  She has attended several homebirths and is very familiar with the process.  I am going to lean on her confidence since she was there at our last birth, and I know she knows that we know how to birth.  I just have to get there myself and believe that we can do this.
Here are some of the things we talked about:
What our vision is for our birth?
Peaceful and uninterrupted by a transfer
Where do we picture ourselves laboring and birthing?
As long as the weather breaks (we are still over 100° F in AZ), I envision spending a lot of time outside enjoying our beautiful courtyard and in the backyard watching the kiddos play.  Otherwise we will take comfort in the sanctuary of our bedroom.
Do we think we are going to use the tub? 
I want to just because I have never been able to use it before.  Since my bag of waters has ruptured before contractions started with our first three births, our previous doctor and the hospitals would not sign off on submersion for fear of infection.  Henci Goer addresses this in her book, The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth and she offers study-based evidence that these are unrealistic concerns.
What are our expectations from our care providers?
Open lines of communication.  Bruss emphasized that he is looking forward to not having to go to the hospital and seeing our labor stall.  By the same token, he wanted reassurance from our midwife that if they do see any signs of concern, that they will let us know in plenty of time to make a Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby decision.
They wanted to know where they could set up their supplies, and where we would be laying out our supplies.
They also checked in to make sure that we had plans for our children:  who would be keeping an eye on them so we could focus on the birth, and how were they feeling about the homebirth.  I can honestly say that when we were under traditional OB care, we were never asked about how our children were being prepared for the upcoming birth.  Even though most children are not going to attend a hospital birth, they are still important people in the family that need to be considered in the planning and welcoming of the newest family member.
Who will be at our birth?
So far, we have Andrea as an Assistant Coach to help Coach Bruss, and our photographer to capture this momentous occasion with her artistic eye.  We are still going back and forth on a videographer. I would love to have a well-filmed video to submit to the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth so that other students could benefit from a birth filmed in the 21 century!  There is no question that it would be neat to capture the kiddos reactions on film and watch it on baby’s birthday; and maybe someday have the courage to show to our own students.
It became apparent why they encourage families to invite anyone who is going to be at the birth to the home visit.  The midwife, her student and our friend Andrea were here with Bruss and I…not present were my aunt who is helping with the kiddos and the photographer.  With just the five of us, I am already feeling like there are too many people and we still haven’t counted the potential videographer and the possibility that some of my other aunts will come over to help with the kiddos, too.  If the baby comes on a Monday, our cleaning ladies will be here…if she comes on a Friday, the landscape crew will be around…noise and people and distractions that we hadn’t thought about!!
Here is the info they shared with us:
Many people are surprised at how “hands-off” the midwives are at a homebirth.  If they see that a couple is working well together, they try to be unobtrusive and do their monitoring discreetly.  They will step in and be more active as needed, but for the most part they want to allow the families to work together and allow labor to progress without interruption.  Their responsibility is to make sure mom and baby are well through the process, and of course they get involved as the time to push arrives and during the postpartum period to make sure mom and baby continue to do well.
My favorite part of the visit was having the kiddos join us on the bed when we did our prenatal exam.  It was so neat to have them around me as we checked on the baby.  They got to hear her heartbeat and ask questions.  They were touching my belly and giving me kisses.  They sang a song for the baby.  If this is an indication of our family birth, it’s going to be awesome.
One of our midwives speaks Spanish, so she was talking to the kiddos about the baby and asking them question in Spanish during the exam.  I would love it if the first language our baby hears is Spanish welcoming her into the world!!
The material included on this site is for informational purposes only.  It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation. This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.


1 Comment to Midwives Make a House Call:

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Yolanda on Friday, September 9, 2011 4:39 PM
Wow! This is getting really exciting! I so wish I could be there! I know I'll be there soon after, so I am trying to focus on that and appreciate it. I believe, I believe, I believe, LORD, help my unbelief. As mother/grandmother, I'm trying not to worry.
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