10 Things You Need for a Beautiful Home Birth
I want to empower you with 10 tips to help you have the most amazing, and dreamy home birth possible.
My homebirth was the most amazing, humbling, and empowering experience of my life. I was 38 weeks pregnant with my twin girls when they decided it was going to be their birthday. To say the events leading up to their birth was a series of miracles would be an understatement. It all started with an intense baby fever around the time when my first two children were two and three years old. I longed for another child so badly. I’d learned a lot about life in the few years that had gone by since my first children born. Their births took place in the hospital, with epidurals, antibiotics, unnecessary episiotomies and a 7 day NICU stay. I knew that if I had the chance again I’d do things differently. I dreamed of a homebirth. I researched homebirth, watched videos, looked into midwives and doulas, birthing classes, and books. Then one beautiful crisp early February afternoon I found out I was pregnant for the third time. I was immediately charged with excitement and hope and kept this wonderful little secret to myself for an entire day. I wouldn’t find out I was pregnant with TWINS until around 21 weeks at my first ultrasound! I always joke that I wanted another baby so badly that I manifested TWO! Following this news, I changed midwives four times, moved to a new city at 30 weeks pregnant, learned at 35 weeks that both girls were breech and was told to prepare for a c-section. I refused. This was the most amazing pregnancy I’d had thus far. I was healthy, feeling good, and both babies were perfect. The willful, determined woman in me wasn’t going to be told that her dreams of a home birth were over. After focusing all my energy and prayers, at 37 weeks on the dot, one of my babies turned from breech to head down position. I found my 4th midwife three days before my girls were born. She had been practicing midwifery for almost two decades and had plenty of experience with twin homebirth. It was meant to be. My girls were born in the comfort of their own home in the wee hours of the first chilly day in that beautiful September. Safe and sound. Perfect and healthy. I will cherish this day for a lifetime. It taught me how strong I truly am, and that a mother’s love can move mountains.
I want to empower you with some tools to help you have the most amazing, and dreamy home birth possible. Some of these things I used during my home birth, and some of them I didn’t and wish I would have. Here are 10 things you need for a beautiful home birth:
**These are not photos from my personal home birth, Sadly I did not have a birth photographer. But I do happen to be lucky enough to have a friend who IS a birth photographer, and a ROCKSTAR one at that!**
1. Prepare. Read books! ESPECIALLY this book: Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth by Ina May Gaskin. It’s crucial that you read this, and get hubby in on it too! Watch youtube videos of peaceful home births. They are so inspiring, and will have you excited for your own! And last but not least, take some classes. I fell in love with yoga during pregnancy by going to prenatal yoga classes. It was so helpful with easing the pregnancy aches, and really made me feel centered and focused on my babies. Hypnobabies is another class you need to look into. Hypnobabies is well-known for helping women to create much shorter, easier and more comfortable labors, making childbirth the joyful experience it was meant to be.
2. Get a midwife, or three. I couldn’t have gotten through my homebirth without my three midwives. Just their presence was so comforting knowing my babies and I were in good hands. They made sure we were safe and loved on me through the entire labor with encouraging words, drinks of water, and back rubs. They believed in me, and my body’s capability to birth the way it was meant to. Midwives are also a key factor in pre and postnatal care, so make sure you know and trust the one you choose.
3. Girl, get a doula. She will be your birth companion. Your best birth friend. Doulas offer physical assistance and emotional support for mom and hubby before, during and after birth. Continuous support during labor is associated with improved mother-baby health, fewer interventions and less need for pain relief. Not only are Doulas there to support you through pregnancy and labor, but also during one of the most challenging times of all: postpartum. Postpartum doulas provide emotional support for you and your family to help everyone find balance and routine with new baby. They also offer guidance on breastfeeding, and newborn care, and provide services such as cooking your meals, running errands, and sibling/newborn care so that you can rest, heal, and enjoy your babymoon. I SO wish I would have had a doula by my side from pregnancy and beyond. I now personally know an amazing team of women, and if you’re local to Kentucky and expecting, you need to reach out to them for your doula needs. Click here to visit the Doulas of Kentuckiana homepage for more info.
4. Don’t be stupid, get a birth photographer. Do you see this amazing image of a mother about to birth her child? I am so grateful for my homebirth experience, but I have no photos to show for it. Capturing an experience as powerful as birth is crucial to your home birth journey. I happen to be friends with the most amazing photographer on Earth, which is who took all of the birth photos you see on this article. Her name is Katie Lacer of Momma KT Shoots go check her out!
5. Birth affirmations. Make them. Hang them. Say them. Remember them. These are the words and phrases that will get you through the hard parts of labor when you’re ready to throw in the towel. Mine included things like: “Each surge brings my babies closer to me”, “This will not last forever”, “My babies are safe”, and “I soften, I open, I release”.
6. Gather your supplies. I’m pretty sure my midwife is still a little mad at me. She arrived at my house at midnight to find I had basically nothing prepared for the birth. Insert face palm emoji. Are you catching the trend here? Learn from my mistakes. BE PREPARED. If you are wanting to have a water birth, you will need a birthing pool. Some midwives provide these to their clients to borrow, and sometimes you will need to buy your own. You can find these on Amazon, or websites dedicated to birthing supplies. You will also need to buy a birthing kit. This kit includes things like underpads, gauze, peri bottles, postnatal pads, and other supplies you and your midwife may need during and after labor.
7. Mama, you need essential oils. Pure, therapeutic grade to be exact. I may not have been prepared with much else, but you best believe I had my oils ready when it came time for labor. Hubby threw Gentle Baby oil blend in the diffuser as soon as I entered active labor. Its scent evokes tranquil, nurtured feelings for you and your baby, and can be a wonderful companion for times of inner reflection, which I did a lot of during labor. I felt like I was “inside myself” speaking to my babies towards the end of labor, and to this day the aroma of this oil brings me right back to that life-changing experience. They were also a vital part of postpartum care for me physically and emotionally. Quality is everything to me, and that is why I only feel comfortable using Young Living essential oils around my family. Education is my jam, so I enjoy teaching classes on essential oils multiple times a month. I would love to connect with you on Facebook if you have any questions, or if you’re ready to experience the powerful benefits they have to offer you can click here to get started!
8. Eat that placenta. No, seriously it’s good for you. Get it encapsulated, which is when it is dehydrated and placed in a capsule for you to take orally. Consuming your placenta has a TON of benefits which include:
-Increase of hormone oxytocin, which helps your uterus return to normal size and encourages bonding with your new babe
-Increases milk production
-Decreases postpartum depression
-Increases CRH, the stress-reducing hormone
-Restores iron levels in blood
9. Believe in yourself. You are a goddess warrior. Your body was MADE in the most incredible way, to do the most miraculous thing on this earth: birth your baby. You are stronger than you think you are, don’t ever let anyone steal your thunder. You’ve got this! Look at this breathtaking photo of a beautiful mama and her brand new miracle.
10. Babymoon. You’ve done it. You’ve rocked it. You’ve birthed your baby at home. Now what? You babymoon. Hire your postpartum doula to take care of any household needs you might have. Grab all your favorite comfort foods (because breastfeeding cravings are real y’all), the Netflix remote, and your new bundle of joy. Then you do NOTHING but gather your family into your bed, snuggle that new precious baby, and bask in the empowering accomplishment that is a home birth. You are amazing!
Beef Bulgogi Bowls
Makes 2 Large Bowls
1 lb. grass-fed rib eye or sirloin steak
2 tablespoons cooking oil of choice
2 tablespoons coconut aminos
2 tablespoons freshly minced garlic
1 tablespoon raw honey or sweetener of choice
2 stems of green onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
4 cups dark leafy greens
2 cups roasted broccoli
3 large carrots, roasted
3 cups cauliflower rice
+ hot sauce (to taste)
= spicy mayo!
1) To make the roasted vegetables, throw frozen broccoli and carrots onto a baking sheet, drizzle in cooking oil of choice, salt and pepper, and roast in the oven at 375F for 30 minutes or so. Remove and set aside.
2) Place the steaks in a large bowl with coconut aminos, minced garlic, raw honey, salt and pepper. Let marinate for 10-30 minutes.
3) In a large skillet, add cooking oil and saute the steaks (along with sauce) over medium high heat or until the steak is medium-well done.
4) Set the beef aside and slice into thin pieces.
5) Using the same pan, heat up your cauliflower rice in the skillet until piping hot.
5) To each bowl, add 2 cups of greens. Top greens with 1-2 carrots, 1 cup roasted broccoli, 1 1/2 cups cauliflower rice, 1/2 lb of steak and chopped green onion. Add a dollop of spicy mayo on the side, sprinkle with sesame seeds and enjoy!
When a parent has a sick child, there are no limits on the lengths that parent will go to recover their child. Healing has always been my passion, and having four children has only clarified that further. I assist others in elevating their health by educating them on the power of real food, essential oils, and positive thinking.
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