Homebirth is seeing a notable revival in the US after a roughly hundred year trend towards other birth places. The reasons that more families are choosing to stay home and be attended by a midwife vary from individual to individual. Maybe you have had a bad experience elsewhere with a previous birth, or perhaps you’re simply looking for something a little different than what your neighborhood maternity unit is offering. Birthing at home may be a good option for you if you want:
- an emphasis on informed consent, including during the birth itself.
- care that treats pregnancy as a biological norm, not an emergency waiting to happen.
- an individualized approach that focuses more on your wants and needs than on routines.
Midwifery care starts with a consult. This is effectively an interview and is free of charge. The consult is a chance for us to meet, get to know each other a little bit, and see if we are a good fit. Bring your questions! Consider this an opportunity to have anything you are curious or concerned about addressed.
After choosing to start care, prenatal visits are scheduled roughly once per month until the third trimester. From approximately 28 weeks gestation, visits are generally scheduled every other week until 36 weeks, at which point weekly visits are suggested until birth. These visits include more typical maternity care, such as monitoring of vitals and any indicated labwork, but they also serve as an opportunity to offer education, build a relationship that helps me better care for you, and provide preventative care. These visits can be in office (in Aledo, TX or Fort Worth, TX), or done as homevisits, depending on your preference. Visits are generally at least an hour long, and I do my best to make sure there is no notable wait. Who wants to sit in a waiting room indefinitely while pregnant? Clients also receive direct access to midwifery support 24 hours a day throughout pregnancy and the immediate postpartum for urgent questions or concerns.
Labor and Birth
At the birth, you will be attended to quietly and calmly. I have portable waterbirth tubs available as desired, and other relaxation and coping techniques are always on offer. Any family, friends, or other support people you want present are welcome, and can be included in the birth process at your discretion. I do my best to facilitate physiologically normal births, and I consider my role to be more of a lifeguard than a manager. In the unusual situation that more than gentle support and loving guidance is needed, I also come equipped and prepared to handle any emergent situations that may arise. These situations, however, are extremely uncommon.
Immediately following the birth, delayed cord clamping is the norm. The first hour is a precious time that most families I work with want to spend together with little to no interruption. Baby can spend this time skin to skin with the person whom they have spent the previous nine months physically connected to, and breastfeeding can be initiated. When everyone is ready, a newborn exam is done. This can be done near you, most typically beside you on your bed as you rest. Most of it can even be done on your chest. An herbal bath can be prepared for you to soak in after the birth, if desired. If you prefer to settle in to rest instead, this bath can also be planned for a followup postpartum visit. I will make sure everyone is stable and ready before leaving you to rest, including briefing you on some basic postpartum guidelines. This information will be given both as a brief verbal run down, and a printed handout because I recognize that at this time you’ve just had a baby and may not retain everything that is said to you.
After the birth, I will come back to check on you within the first 48-72 hours, again at 2 weeks, and then home or office visits are available at 1 month, 6 weeks, and 12 weeks. I strongly suggest that at least the first two postpartum visits be homevisits so you are able to stay home, rest, and recover as much as possible. These visits will include ongoing assessment of your physical and emotional well being, newborn weight checks, infant feeding counseling, and postpartum support. A pap smear is also available at the 12 weeks visit, if needed.
Does this sound like the kind of care you’re looking for? If so, click here to schedule a free consult today!