After delivering three babies at home, I'm still a bit surprised that other people are surprised that we would choose to have this baby at home (Lord willing). O was born in the hospital, R was at home with a physician (amazingly rare!), and L and T were assisted in birth by midwives. We feel completely comfortable and confident in this decision, while I can easily say that it isn't for everyone.
This article is a quick summary of homebirth safety (which seems to be people's primary concern).
We also choose to birth at home for these reasons:
-Comfort. I love being in my bed with my familiar surroundings. When I enter a hospital, I tense up; it's not normal to me or comforting.
-Control. I know I'm not in control during the birth (such an out-of- control feeling labor is!), but I do like that I can make logical decisions, such as to eat if I am hungry or drink if I'm thirsty. I like that I can control the level of chaos or noise or lighting. I can sit in our bathtub if I choose. Those decisions are up to B and I.
-Family. After each birth I find myself eager for the other kids to be present. They don't need to witness the physical act of giving birth, but I don't want them to miss any of the precious moments afterward when we are all so eager to meet the newest member of our family. I don't want to delay that sweetness! And I genuinely miss my kids when we aren't together.
-Prayer and Peacefulness and Privacy. I love that I can be covered in prayer by people I know (you develop such a relationship with a midwife!). I also love the peacefulness that settles over everything when the baby is nestled in my arms and all is quiet. Even though I have an appreciation for nurses, I'm so glad I don't have to meet anyone for the first time when I am going through the physical stress of labor. I'm also glad that I don't have nurses coming in and out, checking, etc. when all is CALM and good. It is so right to me to sleep with that sleeping newborn, to lay in bed for hours learning that baby, to listen to my other children playing outside, to have healthy food to eat from our kitchen. It's so good!