On the morning of my due date I started having irregular surges. I didn’t want to get my hopes up and carried on with my daily chores. This could take a few more days yet, I said to myself. By two o’clock the surges were getting more regular so I knew I was probably going to have the baby today! It was even getting difficult to rest so I stayed active and upright.
Breathing in for four counts and out for eight counts really helped me during surges. When they were getting more intense I squatted during them. By 6pm I called the midwife to come over. She said she’ll be there in an hour. I was glad I left it late to call her as I enjoyed my privacy. Then I said to my husband I hope she’s going to make it in time! Surges were coming quite close together now. We prepared the birthing space in the sitting room with waterproof sheets and various covers. We had a box given to us by the midwives too.
Midwife Fiona arrived at 6.45 pm. I remember her lowering her voice when she came in which I found really nice. She only monitored baby’s heartbeat a few times which I was happy with.
After 7pm the surges changed to pushing one’s and were getting quite intense. I was leaning on the armrests of the computer chair by now which was the perfect height. For the birth I thought it would be better to lean on the sofa though. With the help of my husband and Fiona I managed to get into the right position (it wasn’t easy to move at this stage). Surges were coming on top of each other. I vaguely noticed the second midwife called Jordan arriving at 7.30pm.
Suddenly I felt very intense surges and I remember saying to Fiona that I can’t carry on. When she told me that my water’s will go with the next two surges I was relieved. Sure enough this is what happened.
After two surges the head was born followed by another surge for the rest of the body. What a relief alhamdulillaah (thank God)! My baby girl was born at 7.38 pm. Jordan told me to pant when the head crowned, but, honestly, I just instinctively had to push! I didn’t tear at all. That is my sixth child and I must say it was by far the quickest pushing stage.
I was so happy to have another homebirth and felt relaxed and comfortable at home. I could not imagine going to hospital and having the same experience there. My six year old daughter was at the birth and it was a positive experience for her.
I held my baby skin to skin after, placenta was delivered about half an hour later. I requested delayed cord clamping and did tahneek (Islamic ceremony when a piece date is put into newborn baby’s mouth) for the baby with an ajwa date. She breastfed for a while after. The midwives cleaned up and we all had tea and biscuits. Our children came in and saw baby for the first time. The midwives were so nice, they even helped me to the bathroom and made sure I was alright before they left. I couldn’t have a better service. Alhamdulillaah!
Sadly homebirths are rare in our area, I hope that this will change in the future! To go and snuggle next to your baby after the birth in your own bed is the best!
Khadeeja is a stay at home mum of six (three born at home) and lives in Barnet, North London. The story above relates to her youngest baby girl born in May 2018. Khadeeja choose homebirth because she felt most comfortable in her own space and had undivided attention of two midwives. She thinks that for women with low risk pregnancies home is the best place to give birth as most women can give birth without medical interventions.