Advanced search

Pregnant? See how your baby develops, your body changes, and what you can expect during each week of your pregnancy with the Mumsnet Pregnancy Calendar.

Homebirth booked, come join me in the wait for baby! Ooo, and a couple of questions for those who have...

(44 Posts)
NatzCNL Thu 25-Aug-11 18:19:59

As title suggests, I have just had my home visit from the midwife and am now officially booked for my first home birth grin

Very excited as this is baby number 3 so the fear of not knowing is not there (although the dread of knowing what is going to happen is begining to creep in). I am 36 weeks pregnant and so pleased to be able to have a home birth. My two older daughters are also very excited that they will get to see the baby as soon as they want - they are 3 and 4.

My only concern is what to do with the kids if they are home when it all kicks off. Should I keep them indoors down stairs or send them to the neighbours? What did any other home birth mummies do with their older children? According to my DP and my mum, I was very quiet during my labours with my other children only really making any noise as baby was being born, but not screaming, more like a deep moan. I dont want to scare my girls and have already told them that mummy will be uncomfortable and have a very bad belly ache so not to worry if mummy sounds unwell.

We aren't using a birthing pool as there is no space to have it in our house, but will be using the bath for pain relief. Did anyone try showers? Were they as effective as being submerged? Ive never used water for pain relief before and am slightly concerned about not being able to get out of the bath if in too much pain.

Is there anyone who is also planning/booked in for a home birth? Please come share experiences/fears/excitement etc x

Misty9 Thu 25-Aug-11 20:02:47

Hi there smile

I'm also booked for a homebirth - a waterbirth hopefully. I'm 38+3 so technically could be any day...and it's my first. The hired birthpool is sitting in the dining room and I still can't quite believe I'll be giving birth soon!
Reading a book on homebirthing which is very informative and addresses lots of fears about what might/could go wrong, and what to do about it smile

Not feeling scared about labour as don't have any idea what to expect - I imagine for my next one (if there is one grin) I'll be more apprehensive! Chose a homebirth as wanted to feel as relaxed as poss - and wanted DH to feel as relaxed as poss too. Also, I've heard that the longer you can ignore a first baby labour the better...and taking away the whole 'shall we go into hospital or wait?' question can only help.

I have read/heard that running water on your back during contractions (so, in the shower) can be blissful, so def worth a go. Are you hiring/getting a TENS machine?? I can't decide - although have poss left it a bit late!

Not long now! smile

Secondtimelucky Thu 25-Aug-11 20:53:23

A lot of second and subsequent baby home births seem not to kick off until the evening. With mine, I was having niggling but minor contractions all through the day (about four an hour). As the day wore on, I could manage to keep talking to my toddler, but would make DH wait until a contraction passed. A friend who saw me that day asked if I'd been in labour as she'd noticed me periodically doing some deep breathing!

Once DD was in bed, things got going in earnest. I was loud, loud and DD woke up a couple of times (v small house), but DH just went up and settled her. DD2 was born at 6:30am, so was there when DD1 woke up. The only thing that was a bit awkward was all the follow up (placenta took ages, then stitches) and keeping DD1 occupied upstairs .She watched a lot of DVDs on the computer and ate chocolate chip cookies for breakfast!

How old are your children? I've heard that for slightly older ones, it can be good preparation to play a game of the funny noises mummy might make and practice it a few times. I didn't really know as I'd had an epidural and forceps last time (and DD1 is only 2), but it might help for you?

I'd keep them there as long as all of you are comfortable, but be aware that, for some women, they find they can only let go and go into themselves once the children are out of the way.

nannyl Thu 25-Aug-11 21:18:22


Im 37+4 with my first and homebirth is finally all booked smile, pool is ready (+ a millions sheets etc) in the corner of the lounge, i collected pethidine today (that i dont plan to use) and will collect my home-birth pack from midwife unit tomorrow.

it all very exciting, but for me, its my 1st baby so i have no dilemmas about what to do with other DC (this time!)

We sterilised the hose at the weekend, the nursery and new bathroom were finished at 36+6 (deadline to myself was 37 weeks) and im planning on using natal hypnotherapy too.

Am so pleased to have booked a home birth (which was my plan from before i was even pregnant) as in the early days i had so many -ve comments about how stupid the idea was........ GRRRR

Good Luck to us all smile

ArlingtonStringham Fri 26-Aug-11 10:07:13

I'm 38 + 2 and have planned one too for my first. Not having a pool as we have no room for it and I've never been a massive relaxing bath sort of person - but we have a good shower and separate bath so I guess I could use those. I've had nothing but support and reassuring stories from anyone I've mentioned it to so that has been nice. My colleague said the worst thing about her home birth was that her husband kept leaving her in the middle of a contraction to offer more tea to the midwives so she got annoyed with him!! I'm in Wales and home births are really encouraged here. I think they even have targets to meet.

Also - My midwife said not once in her 25 year career has she had to give pethidine at a home birth as everyone has managed fine on gas & air! That was very good to hear!

Been listening to my natal hypo cd daily ever since I stopped work 3 weeks ago. Never used to fall asleep when I listened to it, but now every time I wake up drooling into my pillow by the end so hopefully it's working!

Good luck to you all!

ArlingtonStringham Fri 26-Aug-11 10:10:51

Ooh and I hired a tens machine from because they were the cheapest!! Looks fine and it's now waiting on my huge pile of old ratty towels I've been collecting from family members! I'm sure it's not too late to get one. My nan used to swear by one for back pain so I have anecdata that it is effective!

NoNoNoMYDoIt Fri 26-Aug-11 10:13:26

i shipped my DS (aged 2.6 at the time) to some neighbours at about 9.30 am and DD was born at 11.15am. DS was back for lunch at 12.30 and i was building a trainset with him (that DD had kindly brought with her when she was born - how kind!) by 1pm...

i wouldn't have wanted to have him around in the house, as it was only my (now X)H who was with me. if i had had my mum around too, she could have taken DS out for the morning while i got on with it.

if it had been the middle of the night, we had neighbours on standby and a bag packed with DS overnight stuff and we were going to leave him sleeping and only if i needed to be transferred were we going to call our neighbours. if possible, one of them was going to come to the house and sleep at ours so we didn't have to wake DS up. otherwise, we would have dropped him off drowsy at their house on the way to the hospital.

as it was DD was born on saturday morning, so everyone was off work anyway and it was no hassle. 2nd babies often have a habit of turning up at a convenient time - your body knows when is a good time to labour ;-)

good luck and ENJOY! it is a magical thing.

eaglewings Fri 26-Aug-11 10:17:22

DS went to neighbours for home birth of his sister. He was 3. He joined us as soon as she was born and before I got out of the pool.

ballstoit Fri 26-Aug-11 10:23:49

I had niggly cramps all day with DC3. Extended family were all round for BBQ, so my parents took DC1 & 2 home with them. I had planned for them to be at parents or my brothers, as I didnt want there to be no one to care for them if I had to go in to hospital for any reason. I suppose it depends how well you know your neighbours.

DD2 was born at just gone 9pm on the Sunday night (DC had gone with my parents at 7.30!), and the other DC came back on the Tuesday. I had a lovely day with nb, snuggling, feeding when she wanted and could enjoy her for that day without risk of other DC feeling jealous.

morethemerrier Fri 26-Aug-11 13:31:20

I had a planned home water birth for my 3rd baby, my other two DS aged 10 and 2.5 stayed at home with my MIL on hand. She put them to bed, and actually was present to see her grandaughter born in the pool!

And I did the usual moaning and groaning but they didnt wake up, my eldest did say later he vaguley remembers hearing something like a cow blush but wasnt bothered by it enough to wake or investigate!

DD was born at 1.40am and everything was cleaned away and we woke my eldest at around 4am to meet his sister which was lovely,then we all went up to bed and my other DS face when he came into the bedroom in the morning was like seeing his face on xmas morning! Magical!

Now planning DC4 due 4/12 again homebirth but without the pool this time as for me I only got in towards the end and it was more the ease of changing positions rather than pain relief that I found it useful for, and its quite a task filling/emptying/keeping the right temp etc. Still glad I got my waterbirth though!

Highly recommend using a tens from early on, thats all the pain relief apart from few puffs of G&A during pushing stage that I used.

At the end of the day its whatever suits you and your family, Im no earth mother it was more the practical aspects of when to send them to stay elsewhere etc it just seemed easier to go with the flow and take it as it came,MIL could have taken them to her house if they became upset. Im just glad they were there and involved as much as was possible.

It wasn't in the plan to have MIL see me in all my glory but it just panned out that way and we all have a shared special bond between us,she has no daughters of her own so probably would not have had the opportunity to experience the birth of a grandchild!

It was by far my most relaxed and enjoyable (really!) birth as I tend to have a slow start then very fast when things kick off! My second hospital birth nearly ended up in the car park as they were not convinced I was in labour and tried to send me home! My three labours were 11 hours, 3 hours and the last 1hr40mins!

Good luck,and another tip having read about the offering of refreshments, is to point the midwives in the direction of the kitchen have everything set out and biscuits so they can help themselves!

And if anything is not going the way you want be vocal! I had prepared a playlist of songs I wanted to listen to but as there were two midwives, my OH and MIL all watching TV I didnt put it on and eventually gave birth listening to Jim Bowen's Bullseye TV Programme as "BULLYS SPECIAL PRIZE" was being announced! (tv left on in the background!grin) funny now but I did feel a bit under pressure to accomodate everyone else!!!

Wont happen this time lol!!! wink

lovemysleep Fri 26-Aug-11 13:33:11

I've got the mw coming round soon to book mine - we've just finished the decorating and have now got to shove everything in place!

Got a pool in the garage waiting to be set up, and am planning to use natal hypnotherapy, and have been reading Juju Sundins "Birth Skills" book. Did get Ina May Gaskins too, but she's so negative about anything other that a HB that it irritated me - it was a bit away with the fairies too!

DD was born in the hospital - they were great but the postnatal ward was horrible. She was back to back too, so it was a very long labour, and I had to have an epidural, with a ventouse delivery. Am hoping that this one won't be back to back - could do without the extra discomfort/pain if I want to be at home.

I haven't decided what to do with DD, as I'm one of those people who tend to go into themselves when in pain - I can't stand people touching me, or asking me questions. DD is 6, and very inquisitive! We will see how we progress, and then we have relatives on stand-by to come and collect her if we need to. Part of me would love for her to be there, but we'll just have to see.

Love the idea of being at home for the birth, but I'm also prepared to consider a hospital transfer if I can't hack it. I haven't had many positive comments when I mention a HB too - the one that really gets me is "What about the mess??" - I am tired of telling people that the MW's clear up. As if they'd just bugger off, leaving it all - they have to clear up after you've given birth in a hospital too!!!!

msbuggywinkle Fri 26-Aug-11 14:18:52

If your DC are likely to be around, try watching birth videos with them. The women make a huge range of noises, so they will be prepared!

I've laboured over night both times before, with DD2 contractions didn't get strong until DD1 was asleep! I really felt a 'now I can get on with it' kind of feeling.

DD1 was upstairs while DD2 was born in the living room, she watched DVDs with my Mum as she was too excited to go back to sleep! The noise didn't bother her, helped by my Mum acting very underwhelmed and saying 'Mummy is just having a baby, we'll go down and see her in a bit' as though it was all perfectly normal and not very interesting.

Planning to have both DDs in the house when DD3 is born in Dec, they are both very chilled about it all, DD1 wants to be woken up when the baby arrives so she can hold the baby, if DD2 is asleep we'll leave her until the morning.

nannyl Fri 26-Aug-11 15:31:58

I have just collected my home-birth pack from the hospital and pethidine from the chemist smile

i am now all set and ready to go..... (it hit me like a ton of bricks when maternity unit hadnt made my homebirth pack but had made someone elses (that they gave me) I said i could come back and he said "No, you could go into labour this evening... you need one now" shock, though i guess at 37+5 he does have a point!!!!

tellyaddict Fri 26-Aug-11 16:00:06

Hi - I had a HB for my third child, my other 2 were 8 and 10 at the time. No family close by so we made no plans for what to do with older kids when I was giving birth, there was also a strong possibility that my family would be staying here when baby arrived, so decided to take it as it comes. I ended up giving birth while the older 2 were at school, so they left in the morning knowing I was in labour and came home to a new baby. All tidied away before kids got home, and 2 weeks before my family came to stay. I was VERY glad the kids weren't here in the end as I didn't want to be talked to or touched whilst in labour and they would've driven me mad!! HB was a wonderful experience, especially when we could all do things together straightaway like have dinner, snuggle up in bed etc. Good luck to all, and enjoy!!

Milliebow Fri 26-Aug-11 16:11:39

Really interesting reading everyone's posts. I decided on a HB only this week. MW's have been fantastic though at setting it up really quickly, I'm 36+6 with DC1 today and we can have hb from 37 weeks in our area. Mw brought around birth kit box last night and birth pool in a box arrived today. Just waiting for drugs and entonox to arrive now, although looks like it is going to be after the bank holiday now. Apparently have to leave pool for 72 hours to warm up to room temp before unfolding so no great shakes waiting for the drugs to come. Don't really expect to go so soon with my first either although nannyl it all seemed more real when the mw's came around last night and said she was so glad that she got the box of stuff to me before 37 weeks just in case!

Not sure about the making cups of tea for everyone - think the birth pool may have to be in our kitchen-dinner!

Milliebow Fri 26-Aug-11 16:12:17

Really interesting reading everyone's posts. I decided on a HB only this week. MW's have been fantastic though at setting it up really quickly, I'm 36+6 with DC1 today and we can have hb from 37 weeks in our area. Mw brought around birth kit box last night and birth pool in a box arrived today. Just waiting for drugs and entonox to arrive now, although looks like it is going to be after the bank holiday now. Apparently have to leave pool for 72 hours to warm up to room temp before unfolding so no great shakes waiting for the drugs to come. Don't really expect to go so soon with my first either although nannyl it all seemed more real when the mw's came around last night and said she was so glad that she got the box of stuff to me before 37 weeks just in case!

Not sure about the making cups of tea for everyone - think the birth pool may have to be in our kitchen-dinner!

Milliebow Fri 26-Aug-11 16:12:46

sorry for double post - computer playing up.

camdancer Fri 26-Aug-11 16:27:56

For DD1's birth DS (then 2) was downstairs with my mum while I gave birth upstairs. Mum was a bit freaked out but DS didn't seem to notice. She was born at 2:30pm and it was raining hard so Mum didn't want to take DS out.

For DD2's birth, DS (4) and DD1 (2) slept through the whole thing. She was born at 4:15am and I wasn't quiet whileI was in labour. We had called my Mum as we thought I might have to go to hospital but she arrived after DD2 was born. We had watched a couple of births on youtube so it wouldn't be too scary for DD1 and DS. We had also talked about how it does hurt but that is ok. They seemed ok with it all but then slept through, so the best outcome really.

iskra Fri 26-Aug-11 16:33:37

I'm 37 weeks & booked in for a homebirth too. We planned a homebirth with Dd1 too, & laboured at home for 12 hours in the pool before we had to transfer to hospital - it was great at home & I hope we get to birth at home this time too!

DD is very interested in babies being born etc - she's three - & I dont know what we will do with her during the birth. My mum is on standby to either take her away or entertain her at home. Hopefully it will be nicely timed! My mum had both of my younger brothers at home during the night - I can remember waking up in the morning & them being there.

The midwife dropped off the pack yesterday, & the student midwife with her was very cooing about how excited I must be... actually we just moved house on Sun & I feel like I have a million things to do before having this baby...

NatzCNL Sun 28-Aug-11 09:48:40

Sorry Ive not responded before, my lap top decided to give up on me 2 days ago and we have only just got the PC back out of the loft! Thanks for all the responses!

What is the HB pack? I got some guide notes, a bit like hospital notes which are for use at home only. No drugs or anything as the midwife said they would bring everything with them on the day. She also said that they would only support a HB from 37 weeks, could this be why Ive only got notes?

Im a bit aprehensive about showing my girls a birth video, they are 3 & 4 (5 next month), and I only told DD1 how babies are born last week. Is it a bit too graphic to show a birth video, or does it keep away from the business end?

My mum uses a TENS machine for ongoing back pain, and has kindly lent me her spare one, so have spoken to the midwife about how to use it as Ive never tried it before. She did tell me that they will not give pethadine at home where I live, which I dont mind as I had it with DD1 and really didn't like it.

Im planning on delivering in our bedroom so hoping my mum or MIL will keep the kids downstairs and be on tea/coffee duty for me. Saying that, DD2 was a 5am delivery so with any luck the kids will sleep through it all. I do think its a good idea to have the refreshments set out so the midwives can help themselves. Only thing that my MW requested was for there to be a large supply of tea, coffee and biscuits.

I bought a water proof mattress protector for the bed, but the midwife suggested having bin bags ready to cover the pillows and blankets and floor. I dont really remember as the midwives were cleaning up throughout my hospital births, but does it really get that messy? Am tempted to buy water proof protectors for the duvet and pillows rather than use bin bags.

Best of luck to all the impending births, and thank you for all the HB experienced mummies coming on to share their experiences x smile

Secondtimelucky Mon 29-Aug-11 18:03:00

You won't get the home birth pack until 37 weeks, or shortly before. It has glamorous things like disposable sick bowls, clamps, dressings, etc in it! Plus the birth notes, red book, etc.

If you show your daughters a birth video, find one on youtube and vet it first!!

Just be aware that not all TENS are suitable for birth. You need one with a background setting and a boost button really. The normal back pain ones aren't really recommended.

Can't really help on the mess. Mine wasn't too bad during labour because my waters didn't go until I was in the pool. Think that there was a fair amount of blood afterwards, but only because I traipsed around from room to room in various attempts to get a stubborn placenta to budge. Didn't see it though. Between my DH, my doula and the midwife, they must have cleaned up after me.

nannyl Mon 29-Aug-11 18:40:01

disposable sick bowls?

I havent got any of those in mine... (have been told to provide my own sick bowl, lol!)

I have also seen one of those instruments to break waters, quite a few inco pads, a whole 2 maternity pads, which look thicker and bigger than any i have bought, and i have a tube of saline and what looks like a babies oxygen mask.
+ quite a few "hospital" bin liners for different types of waste.

i also have 2 blue parcels that are sealed so not sure whats in them

i got my GP to prescribe me pethidine as midwifes cant carry it. I dont plan to use it, but its there just in case

Secondtimelucky Mon 29-Aug-11 19:13:03

Erm, well I'm not sure that they were meant for sick but you know what I mean, the disposable papier mache things. Fairly sure the placenta went in one. I think one of the blue parcels might be the suture kit.

AFAIK not all midwives will administer pethedine at a home birth. Others have the system you describe where the GP prescribes it in advance.

Secondtimelucky Mon 29-Aug-11 19:13:37

Sorry, that wasn't clear. Not all areas have the system where midwives will administer pre-prescribed pethedine.

knitterati Mon 29-Aug-11 22:27:02

I'm 11+4 and thinking about a home (water) birth, so this thread with everyones' experiences really helpful & interesting even though it's early days for me. This is DC1 so no need to worry about other DC. Really hopeful for a HB!

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: