Category : Birth

Birth Home Birth Personal Posts

Birth Story of My Third Child & First Homebirth

Translation: DH=dear husband, DD=dear daughter, DS=dear son

My “due date” was anywhere from 12/4/11-12/6/11 depending on what date you use. The first “due date” I got using the suspected ovulation date & an online calculator was 12/7/11.

Around 1 A.M. on 12/7 I woke up with cramps & back pain. I’d been having Braxton Hicks Contractions for weeks upon weeks, and they had gone from annoying, to uncomfortable, to painful, and I’d had a few with some cramping. I thought to myself that I might want to tell DH to stay close to a phone that day in case this was “it.” After I was awoken by “cramps” and back pain every few minutes, I realized that this was, in fact, “it.”

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Birth Co-sleeping Home Birth Motherhood Personal Posts

I Wasn’t Born Yesterday!!


But I know someone who was!!


Hopefully I will have time to write the birth story soon. (Birth story here!) It was amazing and I feel fantastic. I still haven’t shared my other birth stories.

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Birth Motherhood Personal Posts

I’m an Obsessive Planner, but This Doesn’t Bother Me

I’ve mentioned before that I’m an organizer, a planner, a worrier and an obsessor. I know I drive my husband totally nuts by not resting until I’ve worked out minute details of even hypothetical situations.

So, it seems kind of funny that someone with my personality doesn’t schedule a c-section as soon as the lines show up on the pregnancy test and/or have repeated ultrasounds until I can see the gender.

In fact, not only am I not bothered by not knowing the gender or baby’s birthday, but I actually enjoy it. Weird, huh?

We didn’t found out the gender of any of our children, so I have boy clothes (though they are the wrong season) girl clothes, and some gender neutral clothes. As it turns out, I didn’t have as much gender neutral clothing as I thought I did, so we did buy a few outfits. Clothes are ready, diapers and blankets are ready…they just aren’t pink or blue. 🙂

It is a little weird wondering if this weekend was our last as a family of four, and not knowing when the baby will decide to arrive. As of the date I’m posting this, I’m either 40 weeks 1 day, or 40 weeks 3 days, depending on what date you use. I’m not gonna lie, I’m on the edge of my seat waiting and wondering. It doesn’t help that I’ve had Braxton Hicks contractions for the past two months, that have recently gone from annoying, to uncomfortable, to somewhat painful.

I’ve had people comment that they couldn’t stand to know know the gender etc. since they couldn’t plan. I guess I feel like I did plan, and we are prepared. *shrug* Really, I think this feels less like something to plan and more like a big gift! More of a surprise than a project. 😀

I’ll be honest that I am starting to feel like a watched pot though, hee hee!

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Birth Home Birth Mailbox Mondays

Mailbox Mondays 11/14/11 – Considering Homebirth

considering home birth via @chgdiapers

Yay! Mailbox Mondays! If you need cloth diaper advice, or have another question for me, please ask. Every Monday, I will answer a reader submitted question, and ask my readers to help too!

Questions don’t have to be cloth diaper related, just email maria at with “Mailbox Mondays” in the subject, or fill out my contact form for readers, which you will always be able to find on my Contact Page.

Stephanie says:

I know this time around you are planning a home birth. The idea intrigues me, but scares me at the same time. If my husband and I decide to have another little one (our newest just turned 5 months old), what would you say to convince my husband and I it is a good idea? Well, more so my husband than me. 🙂 What type of preparations do you need to do at home to get ready for this? Do you need anything special?

Hi Stephanie! I’m excited that you’re considering home birth!

Before I answer you, I have to say that while I’m sharing this information, I absolutely do not judge anyone who births in the hospital, no matter why they choose it.

If you missed my post about my journey to homebirth, please do read it. My path to home birth was a long one, and it really wasn’t a single thing that pushed me to it. I spent literally years reading and researching. I read books, medical studies, you name it. This may sound corny, but no one can really convince you. It’s hard to explain but as your views on birth change, it changes you. It’s really a process. Or, it was for me anyway. So, you have to take that journey for yourself!!

Luckily, you have plenty of time, and I suggest you begin by reading about birth as a normal physiological process. I suppose I’m really not a good homebirth advocate (or advocate for anything else for that matter) because while I feel it is the right choice for me, I don’t push my views on anyone, and I tend to not mention it unless asked. While I really do feel that normal, uncomplicated childbirth doesn’t belong in the hospital, I respect the choice to have a hospital birth.

So first off, I’d suggest that you read a few books like Born in the USA: How a Broken Maternity System Must Be Fixed to Put Women and Children First, Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth and just about any other books on my list that you can get from your local library. If you haven’t already, watch The Business of Being Born with your husband. As you start to learn about the history of childbirth in America and how birth operates when it is unhindered, I think your mind will start to open.

I’d suggest that you and your husband both write down what intrigues you about home birth, and what scares you. If you continue to read and do research, you might find that the things that once scared you, no longer do. A lot of the things that are thrown out about why birth belongs in a hospital really aren’t true when you read the (scientific/unbiased) studies. Many of the issues and complications with birth are caused by a doctor’s inability to wait for labor to progress, their desire to interfere and “fix,” and the fact that many really have no idea what a normal birth looks like. After reading several of the books I read, you may start seeing that some of the things that you think of as being childbirth dangers are in fact iatrogenic (doctor caused) and rarely present in an unhindered birth.

If possible, join a birth circle, or home birth group. Read home birth stories and watch as many home birth videos as you can find.

Find out what the laws are in your state, what your insurance will cover, and start interviewing midwives. Some states license only Certified Nurse Midwives, some have “rules” on when they are no longer allowed to attend a home birth (after 41 weeks etc.) Educate yourself on possible complications, and the steps to take in each situation. Take charge of your body and your birth. Figure out how far you are from the hospital, and how long it would take you to get into an operating room. (I’m talking in case of a true emergency such as cord prolapse when birth is not imminent, which is actually quite rare when membranes are not artificially ruptured.) Often times, you would be able to get to the hospital with an OR waiting for you, in the same amount of time it would take to have one ready if you were already there. Find out where your nearest responding EMS is, and how long it would take them to get to you.

I don’t feel that replacing an OB with a CNM and a hospital with a bedroom is necessarily any different or better, unless your only goal is to give birth at home. Ask the midwife how long she’s been practicing, how she was trained, if she is licensed, how many births she has attended, what complications she’s encountered and how she’s handled them. How often does she do cervical checks, break water, what is her transfer rate (and the reasons for transfer.) How does she feel about breech births and how does she handle them, what steps does she take for postpartum hemorrhage (and what does she consider a hemorrhage), what steps does she take for shoulder dystocia, does she test for group b strep (and how does she treat it), does she place a time limit on placenta delivery (if so, what steps does she take?) and so on. Also important is how many clients she will take on in the same time period, if she has assistants and/or partners etc. Also ask around and find out what the midwife you’re considering is actually like, how interventive she is, how happy prior clients were with their births etc. The old “bait and switch” can happen with any medical provider!

As far as what supplies and things you need, that’s intertwined with your midwife interrogation interview. Is she certified in neonatal resusciation? Does she carry oxygen, vitamin K and pitocin with her? Does she carry any herbs with her? Typically, a midwife will give you a “birth kit” to order and hang on to (chux pads, umbilical cord clamp, sterile gloves etc.) along with a short list of other items, like an extra set of sheets, a clean towel, a large trash bag, a bowl for the placenta and such.

While I definitely recommend looking for a midwife that you are in line with and wholly trust, I also recommend taking full responsibility for your own care and researching everything for yourself. When you’ve fully educated yourself, you may find hospital birth to be a little scary.

I hope that this has helped you a little bit, and even if you do all the research and decide to go with hospital birth, you will be fully informed! 🙂

If you have had a home birth, what resources would you suggest to someone considering it?

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Birth Motherhood Personal Posts Pregnancy

Making Babies is Wacky & Weird (Don’t Worry, I Don’t Mean the Actual “Making”)

Given the fact that I’m in my thirties, 35ish+ weeks along with my third child, and have taken biology, you’d think this would be old hat to me by now. But it’s not. I still find human reproduction to be wacky and amazing. Whether you believe in evolution or intelligent design (or whatever the kids are calling it these days) you have to admit, it’s pretty darn miraculous.

Two “cooks,” two “ingredients,” one “oven” and 40 weeks (give or take) and you’ve baked an actual, honest to goodness, bona fide human person. From scratch.

I swear I’m not completely stupid. I had ultrasounds with my first two, so I was actually able to see them moving all around in my uterus. All 3 have had hiccups, done somersaults, and caused alien-like ripples and weird corners on my abdomen. Towards the end of my pregnancy with my son, I could feel his rhythmic practice “breathing.”

Still, the enormity didn’t hit me until I was holding my babies in my arms. In fact, I think my first thought after giving birth the first two times was “holy sh&^, I had a baby.” You’d think yeah well, duh. What exactly did you think was happening? I don’t know, I really don’t. I guess the reality just didn’t hit me until then!

I still look at my kids sometimes in wonder & amazement. I can’t imagine my life without them, yet just a few short years ago, I didn’t know who they were. I know how much of our traits are “nature” vs. “nurture” is debatable, but so far my children were born with their own, distinct personalities.

Sometimes I put my hand on my belly and I wonder who this little baby is? Are you a boy or a girl? Will you look like your brother & sister? Will you like your spaghetti with sauce, or without?

I know I’m a crazy, hormonal pregnant lady but I’m just so humbled and awestruck. So grateful for two healthy children. So honored to be called their Mommy.

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