Delivering a Baby at Home

Here is C. Mishler's account of delivering her baby at home using the Lamaze method and how she prepared for childbirth.


| May/June 1971



Home Delivery

When you have a baby at home, it is essential to receive the proper pre-natal care your doctor can offer.


Dmitrieva Daria - Fotolia.com

My husband and I once lived in Mexico for five years and, while there, I was constantly puzzled by the Mexican's term for giving birth: "to bring to the light". Such a blessed refer ence to an experience which I had always thought of as horrible didn't make sense at all.

It didn't make sense—that is—until Dick and I studied on our own, learned to ignore the scare tales with which we were flooded and brought our third child to the light by ourselves in our own home. Now—nine years later—I've had two more children the same way and am teaching the Lamaze Method of Training for Childbirth to other couples. Naturally, I've developed some ideas on the subject that I'd like to share.

First and foremost, if you want to have your baby at home, be very, very faithful about pre-natal checkups. The slightest indication of possible trouble should send you to a hospital for the birth. Really good nutrition (read Adelle Davis) is another important part of preparing for childbirth: natural and unrefined foods, lots of fruits and vegetables . . . you know what I mean.

The study of some method of birth "training" is also extremely vital. I prefer Lamaze, having found it most effective in my own experience and having seen it work over and over for the parents I've instructed. Lamaze or not, however, you should know—and know well—some way of controlling the possible pain and discomfort of a delivery. Wide-awake parents, who are informed and aware of what is happening during normal birth and who know what to do to keep the mother comfortable and to assist—not impede—nature, are vitally important in any delivery . . . and especially so for home deliveries.

You should also (unless you're an Amazon) have a third person—in addition to the mother and father—take the childbirth training with you. A mother in labor should not be left alone and we always have a trusted adult (someone we vibe with) handy to run errands, fetch water, etc. It will be ideal if you can find a doctor who will come and assist if needed and not interfere when not needed. It will also be unlikely. Right or wrong—to avoid hassles—we've learned to simply not tell anyone when we're planning something so outrageous as having a baby in our own home.

You should be making other preparations as the time for delivery approaches. Have the bed protected with rubber or plastic sheets several weeks in advance, in case the water breaks at night. We used newspapers on the bed for our first home delivery but found them too crackly and didn't repeat that idea. When you know for certain you're in labor remove the plastic, make the bed with clean sheets, put the plastic back on over the linen and then put another clean sheet on top of the plastic. After the birth you'll be able to strip down to the underneath sheets and have a clean, fresh bed again with little hassle.

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