Friday, April 8

Laura's VBAC Home Birth:

"Yep, I did it at home and no, I'm not a hippie,
uninsured or a crazy person..."

Let me first start out by saying that I am blessed with two healthy happy boys that are the light of my life. And without that cesarean I wouldn't have had the honor to meet all of the amazing people to help me achieve a VBAC at home. Yep, I did it at home and no, I'm not a hippie, uninsured or a crazy person (I was called "crazy" by an acquaintance once) hah! Far from it. The main reason I wanted to birth my second son at home was simply because I just wanted to be left alone to let my body do what I KNEW it could do.

My first son was born on March 1, 2006 at 11:30 pm by cesarean for the following reasons: "arrested decent at zero station and a prominent tailbone" that is what the doctor's nurse told me when I asked why I had a cesarean when I was visiting the doctor for my second pregnancy. I knew in my heart that I didn't need that cesarean and that if I had not gotten an epidural I would have known what I needed to do to push my son out. A "prominent tailbone?" I don't buy that at all. So I wanted the chance to try again. Luckily my doctor was a VBAC doctor so I just had to talk it over with him. I did, and he agreed to attempt a VBAC but there was something in the back of my head that kept saying, should I really trust this guy? He's the one who cut me in the first place; what makes me think he won't do it again?

By this time I had already hired a doula and was planning another hospital birth when she planted the idea of a home birth with a professional midwife in my mind. I had never considered it but the more research I did, the more it made sense. I had seen the Business of Being Born, read many books, read all the information I could from the ICAN website and then it dawned on me! What led me to a cesarean for my first birth, could not happen at home. There would be no one to push me to take drugs or have an epidural that would render me useless at home. I would be in control of my body and I REALLY liked that idea!

Preparing for the home birth after a cesarean birth was just about the most difficult thing I had ever done in my whole life. First, I had to educate myself, then I had to get my family & friends support (having the knowledge and support is the key to success in my opinion.) Also, I needed to make sure my husband felt comfortable with the idea of a home birth. He himself watched the movies, went to the meetings and had to be fully educated, which once he was, it was a no brainer for him. Once he was totally in agreeance with it, we were set and ready! Having every one's positive outlook and support was key, and I needed LOTS of positivity! You can't be around a bunch of naysayers because that just puts more strain on you. It makes you start to doubt your body's ability to birth, and that's the absolute last thing a preggo mama needs right!?

So, on September 12, 2008 my water broke at 3:35 am. I was very excited to see my body in action and I had my eye on the prize. I quickly shook my husband awake and had him help me out of bed to get to the bathroom to see what was going on. By 3:45 contractions started and I sat on the toilet because it felt the most comfortable. We called our doula and midwife and they were on their way. We called our moms and they were on their way to help out with my first son if he were to wake up (luckily he didn't wake up till 6:30) It was so nice to have my doula there helping me to remember to breathe through every contraction and my midwife was quietly checking on the baby's heartbeat. Everything was going just fine. Knowing that we were both in good hands & everything was going great kept me calm and focused. I spent most of the labor with my eyes closed. It was so peaceful; no sense of urgency and no beeping machines. By the time transition hit I was already in my tub being as relaxed as I
could. (Transition is a period during childbirth that precedes the expulsive phase of labor, characterized by strong uterine contractions and nearly complete cervical dilation.)

My contractions changed a bit to where at the end of each one, my body was pushing and bearing down. This was amazing I thought to myself. My body is actually working so I'd better be compliant and work to get this baby out. At 8:45am he was here and I was elated! I sat in my tub holding this little guy who looked just like his daddy! I was laughing and joking with everyone around me as if I hadn't been in any pain at all in the past five hours. One of the things I remember saying to everyone is "I'm not broken after all! I did it! I feel great!" My husband then cut the cord and showed our new son to his big brother while I rinsed off and got into my nice comfy bed. We then all four of us snuggled together as a family and it just felt so right, so perfect. That morning the light from the sun shone through our windows so bright, I actually remarked to my husband how bright and heaven-like it was and he agreed. I was finally at peace and I was finally healed from the horrific surgery and birth experience from my previous birth. I loved that my husband had such a huge role in our son's delivery. I felt encouraged the entire time, i felt secure, when I had doubting eyes during my labor, my birth team looked at me with reassuring eyes and cheered me on. I felt more powerful than I ever have in my entire life.

Having that VBAC was very much needed in my healing process because I just couldn't get over the fact that I was unable to push out my first son who they said was stuck and wouldn't come out-he was 6lbs,15oz and 20in long. My second son was 8lbs,3oz and 21in long!!! And he came out just fine without even a tear AND he even larger than my first baby! I guess I don't have a "prominent" tailbone after all!  It makes me very proud to say I did it without drugs or medical intervention and if I could do that then I can do anything. 


  1. Strong and powerful!! What a beautiful birth story. Congratulations on your two wonderful boys!

  2. Laura, your story brings me so much hope and confidence in my body.

    Yesterday a friend of mine and I were talking about birth and how hard it is to sometimes have the experience you envision having in your head because EVERY woman's body is different and each birth is entirely different. I can just imagine how powerful you felt when you had your baby and realized that you could infact birth a baby all on your own and your body wasn't "broken!" ;)

    Thank you for sharing, and thank you for talking to me on the phone and helping me through this huge decision. You have been a big big help! I can't thank you enough!

    *Note to readers: Laura is my brothers girlfriends sister. I had no idea she was a V-backer/natural birther/home birther until I was telling my brother (of all people) about my struggles of whether to have another cesarean, have a v-bac in the hospital or have a home birth.... he hooked us up and she told me her whole story one night. After hearing her story, I couldn't sleep that night. All I could do was think about my birth and think, "If Laura can do it, and we're like the same size, both little petite-smurfs, I can do it too!"

    Again, thank you Laura!

  3. Our stories are so similar. I had a VBAC homebirth as well and I had so many of the same feelings and thoughts as you did. I am so glad that you were able to have a HBAC and heal from your first birth experience!!! I love hearing stories like yours.

  4. What a great birth story! I am so glad you shared it with us and that you were able to heal the wounds your first birth created. What a blessing it is to be able to lay in your own bed, in your own clothes after you give birth to the most precious creation you could ever imagine!!! I am so happy for you. I am so happy that Chelsea gets to hear your story and feel empowered! You are so right Laura when you said women need positive and encouraging words and thoughts around them when they are in labor. I think when a women is in labor it is the most vulnerable time in her life. We all need people telling us we can do it! We were designed to deliver babies.

  5. SO AMAZINGGG! congratulations a hundred percent. this is so special :)


  6. I love all these stories! I'm not a Mama yet but we're gearing up to head that direction over the next few years.
    I am so grateful that you organized this Chelsea. Having the ability to read all these opinions and experiences before we embark on parenthood is a real blessing. A heartfelt thank you to you and everyone sharing:)