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Family births

W’s niece is pregnant with her first baby. She lives in Colorado and is due sometime in June. We talked to her today and she said that she wants to have her baby at home, but isn’t sure exactly how. She also said that she has been thinking of a waterbirth. Up until now, she has just been going to a clinic for prenatals. She doesn’t like the idea of strangers at her birth or her baby being taken away from her. She was present a few years ago when her 2 little brothers were born (2 separate occasions) so she knows what it is like in the hospital.

Of course W volunteered me to fly out there to help her have her baby at home, not in the role of a midwife, but more in the role of someone who has done it before. She said she would like that very much. I asked why they don’t just find a midwife out there who will support her, and he said that she wants to have someone there that she feels comfortable with already. I have no problem going, and in fact I would love to see her have a birth that isn’t messed with. But, I don’t think it is as easy as me hoping on a plane. They would need to buy us 2 plane tickets (as R is now over 2, and can’t fly for free). We would be guessing as to when I should arrive, as you never know when the baby will come. She will feel lots of pressure to give birth before my return ticket date (which isn’t conductive to starting labor at all). I would have to spend a week or two staying with W’s family with R in tow. We have VERY different parenting philosophies and so many other things…I just don’t know how that would work for that long of a time. AND, I would be gone long enough that I would probably miss some births here…something that doesn’t make me happy at all.

I offered for her to come and stay a month here with us…which would be fine. We have a spare room and a bed. But, she would have to drive (about 22 hours), due to legal circumstances, and she will no doubt want her mom with her during her labor, and her mom can’t take off of work for that long or leave her younger children. So, we really are in a tight spot. I don’t know what to do.

As far as I can tell, the only option I see happening other than the hospital is they either do it UC (which I don’t think they will, esp as she lives at home with her parents and her dad would have a lot of anxiety with her doing that) or they hire a midwife or doula out there to be there. They live in an area where there are a handful of midwives.

It is frustrating for me, though. I just know what will happen to her in the hospital. She will be lucky if she leaves with a c-section. But, I don’t know if I am in a place to help her avoid that. I think that if she wants to stay home, she is going to have to find someone out there, or come out here. It’s that simple.

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