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Oh, labor. Such wonderful memories come to mind! Said no mother ever. Truthfully though, I’m just being dramatic. I actually had a relatively easy labor experience considering what I have heard about other people’s experiences. And for that, I am extremely grateful! Still, labor for me would have been A LOT better if I had a home birth.
Being a hypochondriac who always imagines EVERY LITTLE THING that could go wrong, I wanted to caution on the side of safety when deciding where to give birth. I picked the hospital figuring that it was the safest place if there was an emergency. Well, I wish I would’ve followed in my mom’s footsteps (who had 3 of her 5 children at home) and had a home birth myself.
Why do I say this you ask?
Let me tell you the 4 reasons why I wish I had a home birth:
1. Freedom to move.
I think my least favorite part about giving birth in a hospital was the fact that I didn’t have the freedom to move around. When you are having EXTREMELY PAINFUL contractions the last thing you want is to be stuck in a bed hooked up to monitors.
I remember feeling so claustrophobic with the monitors wrapped around my belly. I just wanted to find a comfortable position (as comfortable as one can be, in active labor), but I couldn’t find any comfort stuck in a little bed wrapped in cords. Although the nurses did tell me I could walk around, they said I would have to come back to bed every few minutes to get hooked back up to the monitor for a while.
This was a major contributor to my decision on having an epidural. I REALLY wanted to have a natural birth and felt like such a failure for not being able t accomplish it. I truly believe if I was at home, able to move around freely and get in the zone, I could’ve powered through with no epidural.
2. More privacy.
As a pretty modest person, giving birth with a bunch of strangers around me and in a strange place was not ideal. So, the second reason I wish I had a home birth was so I had more privacy.
It’s kind of weird that you spend your whole pregnancy seeing one doctor and nd going to one doctor’s office. You get to know people, they get to know you, and you get comfortable. Then, when it’s actually time to give birth (The most important part! The main event!) you are in an unfamiliar hospital filled with nurses you have never met. And to top it off, your doctor will only deliver your baby if they happen to be on-call when you give birth. (Was that the same for you? Let me know in the comments.)
Basically, you are about to go through one of the scariest and most intimate moments in your life surrounded by complete strangers. I will say I had an incredible nurse. She was the sweetest girl who was trying very hard to make me feel comfortable.
However, that didn’t make up for the fact that my legs were wide open 75% of the time I was in the delivery room and new people kept coming in and out. I realize it is their job and they see lady bits all day long and it’s really no big deal. But if I had a home birth, I would be in the privacy of my own home with midwives I knew and felt comfortable with. The same people I had spent nearly 9 months getting to know. I don’t know about you, but that sounds a lot more appealing.
3. No rules.
One of the big things I hated about having a hospital birth was the fact that I felt like I was in a factory. Just one of the thousands of women coming in to have my baby. They just wanted me in and out with as little chance for error on their end as possible.
Now, I realize with large operations like hospitals there have to be rules and regulations. It lessons their liability and shrinks their margin of error, etc. However, I hated feeling like the hospital staff had more control over my birth experience than I did.
They told me how many people and who could be in the room with me. They told me to wait over 30 minutes for the doctor to arrive before pushing, even though Lily was already halfway out. They told me how to hold my baby. They told me to put my baby in a plastic bassinet across the room, even though I just waited 9 months to meet her. I know this sounds like complaining and I know they were just trying to be helpful (i.e. follow hospital guidelines). But every minute I was at that hospital other people were dictating the situation.
If I had a home birth instead, none of that would have been an issue. There would have been no rules, regulations, or guidelines to follow. Lily and I would have had more control over the whole experience.
4. More comfort.
I think this one is the most obvious. Is there any place in the world where you feel more comfortable than your own home? For me, there is not. My home, where ever it may be, is my safe place. The place I feel the comfiest.
Do you know what place is not very comfortable? The hospital. No matter how much they try to make hospital rooms cozy, they are still hospital rooms. With that clinical over-sanitized vibe. The floors are cold, the sheets are crispy, and the food is downright nasty.
There are so many advantages to having your baby in the comfort of your own home. You can choose the sheets you sleep in. You have your own kitchen filled with food you know you like. You can use your own bathroom. And I don’t know about you, but packing a hospital bag was stressful. I was so afraid I would bring the wrong stuff or forget something. When you are at home you have everything you could need right there!
As you can probably tell from the tone of this post, hospitals are not on the list of my favorite things. But I hope this offers some insights that maybe you hadn’t thought of before on why home births are kinda cool. Just something to think about!
Comment below on what you think about home births or why you like or don’t like hospitals!