Thank you to home birth dad, Jared, who shared these thoughts on our Facebook page in December 2014.
My wife is asleep with our newest daughter who is now over two weeks old and in perfect health, and I wanted to take time to praise home births and specifically midwives. Now – word of warning- my wife does all my proofreading, so with her asleep who knows what kind of mistakes you will find! But, I felt compelled to write this story on your page tonight. I hope that you enjoy, both the story and correcting my grammar if that’s your bag 🙂
Home birth, and birthing in general, should and must always be the parents’ decision and more importantly must be an option for them. I would say that this is the most wise decision I feel one could make for themselves and their child. Let me take a moment to explain from where I draw this conclusion, but first let me tell a small bit about how I see birth. Though please note that I am not in anyway anti hospital birth.
As a father, I have had the pleasure of being present at all 3 of my beautiful daughters’ births and could not imagine who would not want to watch their child being born and drawing their first breath. Or miss the symbolic moment of cutting the cord and claiming responsibility for the child’s life from that moment forward. My heart breaks for those who have to miss this changing of the guard or passing of the torch moment. This is a magical and unforgettable experience rivaled by nothing I know. Life at it very first moment. Wow!
Now, here is the road to our home birth. We started at what was to end up as a horrible experience at the hospital with our first daughter. To say it was a nightmare does not fully grasp how utterly horrible it was: the Doctor who was ‘attending’ ended up completely disregarding our birth plan and threatening a c section or to give direct quotes, “I’ll have them put you under and you wont get to see your baby when she is born,” and, “your body doesn’t know what it is doing.” Sure, you are as shocked as we were, though you probably are in no way surprised at these word being spoken to a laboring first time mother. Needless to say this prompted an immediate hallway ‘chat’ with me about how we would and would not be speaking to my wife going forward; however, damage was done at that time. Our daughter was born and it was still very special. However much was taken away from the beauty of the experience. Fortunately not all hospital births are this way, but sadly many are this same story.
My second daughter was born at a hospital that allowed certified nurse midwife to deliver. This was an amazing experience from prenatal visits up to the actual birth where I ended up catching my daughter since the midwife didn’t make into the room in time. Mark that amazing experience off my bucket list! Having a staff and hospital with an understanding of natural birth and familiarity with birth plans like ours was a huge advantage and blessing.
With our latest edition, we chose a home birth. At first this made me slightly a bit nervous due to the fact that it was an ‘unknown’ for us. Also, during the pregnancy I was unable to attend the majority of the prenatal midwife appointments and did most of my attendance via Facetime. However, being present at the birth was amazing in many ways, and I find that it would take me far to many words to explain. The level of care, love and encouragement provide by our midwife, floored me. Never before had I seen such compassion during a birth, nor been given so much attention and information.
So I’ll sum up this long story by saying this: I am very pro home birth and have the utmost respect for midwives. I believe wholeheartedly that this should be a legal and commonplace option for pregnant families. A home birth is birth in its most pure, natural, and beautiful form which every family should have the chance to experience. Furthermore, midwives embody this same essence and showcase the magnificent ability, strength, and fortitude that women possess in the completion of making, caring for, and birthing a life. Our midwife changed my life, and I found myself falling deeper in love with incredible woman I call my wife (Genevieve) all because one woman encouraged and loved my wife.
To anyone who says you can receive this same care in a hospital I would publicly say, ‘you are a fool!’ I am a father and husband and support home birth and midwifery, and it is time that Kentucky steps forward and gives healthier options and choices to expecting families.