When we went for our first scan I was told that my due date was 22nd February. We were suprised as we had thought it would be March. I remember we asked the sonographer if the scan dates could be wrong and she said no. As first time parents we just accepted this, since we weren’t completely sure about our own dates. Continue reading
My first pregnancy was a challenge – unexpected, at a stressful time. I didn’t realise what short supply independent midwives were in, and missed the chance to get one. Initially was too far out for a Domino home birth, so ended up with Holles Street MLU, then Domino. That was ok (apart from the hospital visits) til my (contested) due date arrived, and they menaced me with the spectre of induction. I called Philomena and she gave me advice on how to negotiate – also offered to come out to the birth if she became free. Continue reading
Our third pregnancy surprised us. My youngest was only 10 months and was still breastfeeding. We had always planned a third child, and were ecstatic. From the start I was considering making this our first home birth. Our first birth in February 2010 took place in the consultant-led unit of Our Lady of Lourdes. It was an induction at 42 weeks, and I had found it quite tough. We felt railroaded into purple pushing, assuming the doctor’s preferred position (on my back) and then ended up with episiotomy and ventouse. We were quite shocked for days after that birth, as we had spent the pregnancy preparing for birth in the MLU and using GentleBirth techniques. Our second birth was in December 2011 in the MLU in Cavan. A very different story – I awoke a little after 1:30am thinking I might be feeling something. Arrived at the MLU fully dilated at 3:30am and baby was in my arms by 4am. Continue reading
As soon as I found out I was pregnant I knew I wanted a homebirth. I’m no fan of hospitals (who is?) and felt it made much more sense to bring my first baby into this world in the safety and comfort of my own home. My partner, Conan, felt the same. We were relieved and delighted to find independent midwife Sue Cole living and working near where we lived in West Clare. We had trouble finding a GP to take us on, so Sue suggested one a little further afield who had already done antenatal care for one of her homebirthers. The reaction from the local GPs was disappointing but expected and further concreted my wishes to stay as far away from the medicalised world of doctors and hospitals as possible. I wasn’t sick after all. In fact after the tiredness of the first trimester had gone I don’t think I’d ever felt healthier or happier. Continue reading
I was due on 27 December 2012 and waited for my so much wanted home birth. On my due date everybody was asking if anything started and really annoyed as it was putting more pressure on me and reminded me of 14 days countdown. I had absolutely no signs of upcoming labour. I started losing any hope for home birth with days passing. On 3 days overdue I woke up full of energy and ridden with period cramps but irregular. They were gone by night time. Next day passed really quietly, no cramps, no energy. Continue reading
On Monday, 42 weeks shared a birth story of a VBAC mum who was able to negotiate DOMINO care with a midwife in an Irish maternity unit. Her story is a must-read and is very popular. This second story, from the same woman, explains their birth journey and how they were able to negotiate the DOMINO care option.
Our Birthing Journey
Life & Death
Fighting for respect;
My right to choose how and where I birth my baby. Continue reading
A succession of events in my previous pregnancies and births, led me to realise the importance of continuity of care. I entered into my 6th pregnancy (4th birth) with much hindsight and was extremely determined to give this birth the best I could offer. My belief is birth is a special event. Our bodies and babies have a profound instinctual ability to orchestrate a cycle of events that gives rise to new life in the world. To enhance and protect this wonderful cycle of events, it was essential I create a support team (ie husband, midwife, doctor) and establish a positive natural birthing environment. I had total trust in my body and baby (much credit to Ina May Gaskin’s books), it was my support network and environment that required planning. Continue reading
It’s hard to believe it’s 3 weeks to the day (now just over 4 as it’s taken me a week to finish this!) since Lorcan arrived – just like with Aoife it’s almost like he was never not here, yet I can’t quite figure out where he came from! Every now and then I find myself looking at him thinking “where did you come from!” Funny, how we have 9 months to prepare and it still seems to take us
unawares. Continue reading
Aoife’s “due date” according to the hospital scan was 23rd November so by the time we got to 42 weeks we suspected that maybe the dates of the first scan done at Mount Carmel giving us the estimated due date of 2nd December might be more accurate. Coincidently both dates matched my own “possible dates”, which didn’t help! As I had been planning a homebirth from the beginning I was anxious to avoid induction, especially after successfully having her turned from breech by ECV (external cephalic version) at 38 weeks (or rather 36 weeks retrospectively). Continue reading
Lots of people (all of whom have never had a home birth or attended one) are very fond of telling the world that women are not “allowed” have their first baby at home. Has someone said this to you? I am sure that many people said it to me before I ever got pregnant, and some still quote it now.
Reasons people give are usually fairly random but often centre on some kind of notion that a woman’s body is akin to an untested, untried machine. The same people are usually eager to concede that once a woman s body has been “tested” in a pregnancy and birth and performed (one presumes) to appropriate standards, its fine to have a homebirth on baby two. Continue reading
Krysia Lynch, Coordinator, Home Birth Association of Ireland home birth blogger at homebirthireland.com and home birth mum gives us her top ten reasons why home birth rocks!
- You get to know your carer and you get continuity of care from the first visit in early pregnancy to the last visit up to six weeks after your baby is born. Most visits from your midwife will last over an hour and maybe as much as two hours. Most midwives include your other children in the antenatal visits and like to get to know you as a family. Continue reading