Where did you give birth or where was the birth you witnessed?
I gave birth in my 2 bedroom apartment in Calgary, Alberta. We had a big birthing pool set up in the living room, which consumed almost the whole space. My husband and I were supported by an incredible care team of a doula, midwives and one of our good friends. I always felt safe, cared for, and completely at ease since it was my own home. When the 19 hour labour started getting hard I considered going to the hospital, but I couldn’t fathom getting into a car, so I stuck it out and had a totally unmedicated birth at home.
Can you describe where your/the birth was?
My husband was there along with my mother, a doula, and our friend who is a physiotherapist. Once hard-labour started, our midwife also came and when I started pushing we were joined by another midwife and a midwifery student.
Can you describe the experience of giving birth or watching this birth?
19 hours of labour in my small apartment was at once the most difficult, gratifying, and beautiful experience of my life. I have never felt anything as powerful as the feeling of finally pushing out my son.
My baby was occiput posterior and asynclytic, but thanks to my incredible care team of a doula and midwife, and the positive presence of my husband and good friend I managed to get baby to turn and straighten his head using different yoga poses. With the encouragement of my birth team I could overcome all of the exhaustion that it took to get to the final stages of labour completely unmedicated and in the safe comfort of my own home.
It felt like hard work, but the kind of work I would do again in a second because of the healthy, beautiful baby it brought me.
Three weeks later, I have had no problems at all with breastfeeding and I still have a care-team always available to answer my questions (paid for by government health care). Thankfully, I can also look forward to a year of paid maternity leave with my infant to give him the best start in life.