As I am getting everything together this morning for our Push Party and getting excited for things to come for midwifery in our great state, I was thinking about my own reasons for wanting a homebirth. First and foremost, safety and better outcomes for mother and baby were my primary reasons. But after experiencing the birth of my first born child at home, the list greatly expanded and did so again after my second child was born.
Over the summer, Mississippi Friends of Midwives asked its members to submit a brief article about their reasons for choosing homebirth and midwifery care to Parents and Kids Magazine. One that really touched me was written by Melissa Barlow. Here is what she had to say:
As I sit here in the early morning watching my four month old daughter sleep, I recall wonderful moment I met her first. Surrounded by my husband, daughter, doula and midwife in my bedroom squatting beside the bed, I was being told “You are doing just amazing,” I looked up at my husband, who was supporting me from behind and said, “With this next one, we are going to do this. I CAN do this!”
And then I did.
My warm, wet baby was placed on my chest and dried, as I cried “My baby, I love you so much. I can’t believe we did this. It was such hard work, but we did it!” She took her first breaths and cried. I had waited for months to hear that cry and to hold this little person.
It really was a moment I was afraid I would never experience. My oldest daughter’s birth was not nearly so beautiful. In the hospital with bright lights, I saw her for the first time after she was cut from my belly. While I loved her just as greatly, it took nearly a decade for me to gather the courage to try again.
My midwife spent hours at appointments in my living room listening to my fears and concerns, all the while assuring me that I could birth my baby. I could trust my body to do what it was built to do. When this birth actually happened, I almost could not believe I actually did it. How empowering it was.
In my opinion, that is what midwives do.
They empower women to be strong, confident mothers.
Written by Melissa Barlow, consumer of midwife and homebirth services in the central Mississippi area.
What were your initial reasons for choosing a midwife-attended homebirth? Did your perspective and reasons change after the birth of your child?