Why We Chose a Homebirth

I received some encouraging feedback after posting my birth story.  It led me to write a more detailed post about some of the reasons that we decided to birth at home.  It’s hard to summarize such a complicated and emotionally-inspired topic, but here are some preliminary thoughts…

Why We Chose a Homebirth

I wasn’t always comfortable with the idea of birth.  Like many, I was indoctrinated into a culture that presents birth as something painful, terrifying, and prone to disaster.

I closed my eyes when we were shown a video of a hospital birth in 8th grade health class.

I remember another teacher returning after maternity leave and explaining that, “No, birth was not fun, it was like pushing a watermelon through a donut hole.” I tried to imagine this, but the donut always fell apart…

I thought I probably would not have children as a young adult.  If I wanted kids, maybe I would adopt. Having babies naturally seemed like it was just too much to handle.

Until I thought about getting pregnant myself, I don’t think I had ever heard a single positive birth story.

bizbeingborn-2And then I watched “The Business of Being Born”.  The scene of a woman swaying in water, her older child and husband standing nearby, is still fresh in my mind.  Suddenly, without any sound, without any indication of anything really, she reaches down and pulls up her baby.  My mind was blown. Birth did not have to hurt. And certainly birth did not have to be traumatic!  Continue reading

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The Birth of Baby Light Footsteps

I feel a little strange making this post public because I am actually a very private person and this is a very intimate topic!  However, over the months that I was pregnant with Baby Light Footsteps, I became very passionate about birth and women’s birth experiences.  I want to share this story to add to the voices of women who are telling positive stories about birth.  Birth does not have to be driven by fear, it does not need to be scary, and it can be done without the use of drugs.

These sentiments are much different than what we are commonly exposed to in the media and what we often hear when we are told others’ birth stories.  Every birth is a blessing and I would never want to take away from someone else who experienced birth differently than me, but I am honored to share the story of my daughter’s peaceful and empowering homebirth.

Please also note that my decision to homebirth was researched extremely carefully (obsessively, really) and that my decision to (and preparation for) birth at home is not explained here.  Please email me if you’d like to discuss the decision further, or maybe there will be a future post about why I decided this was the safest choice for me and my baby!

One of the many captions scattered around the house in the month before the birth!

One of the many affirmations scattered around the house in the month before the birth!

Continue reading

Blessingway Beads

At some point during my pregnancy, I learned the term “Blessingway”.  I believe it was because I saw an ad for this book (Mother Rising) in an issue of The Mother Magazine (a nice resource for alternative-type mamas, by the way).

Essentially, the idea of a Blessingway is similar to a baby shower, but emphasizes preparation and support of the mother rather than just the baby.  Instead of an event that centers around the giving of material gifts (which admittedly, are very helpful before a baby!), the importance of a woman’s journey to motherhood is also acknowledged.  Continue reading

Nourishing Pregnancy Tea

Our bodies require extra love and care while pregnant, especially nutritionally. Many of the herbs that I made part of my routine prior to becoming pregnant are also great at nourishing pregnant bodies.

Strong, medicinally-potent herbs should be avoided during this sensitive time, but nourishing, food-like herbs can provide essential vitamins and nutrients. Examples of these nourishing herbs include nettle, oatstraw, alfalfa, and red raspberry. They have been used safely by midwives and wise women for countless years to support pregnant mamas. Of course, if you’re a real stickler for FDA approval, you’ll want to find your cup of tea elsewhere (harhar) and in general, it’s always best to talk to your doctor or midwife before ingesting anything.  However, I think you’ll find that these herbs are gentle and safe.   My midwife certainly thinks so! Continue reading