Home birth comes with a whole host of assumptions and judgements.
Only hippie's would have a home birth.
I'm not crunchy like that.
I’m scared something bad will happen.
I‘m safer at a hospital.
There can be so many preconceived notions about home birth and the kind of person who chooses a home birth.
I planned to have my first baby in the hospital because I was scared of the unknown. I was worried about help if something 'went wrong', and I honestly thought if I choose home birth I couldn't go to the hospital.
I wish someone had told me 'you can change your mind at ANY time.'
I wish someone had said 'why don't you consider staying home as long as you are comfortable. We will make sure everything with your health and safety and your baby's health and safety is in order, and if anything comes up you can go to the hospital.'
The risk of actual "emergency" in child birth is very low. There are almost always warning signs: Irregular contractions, length of labour, meconium in the water, baby's heart rate, signs of infection in the birthing person. Midwives refer to these signs as 'pink flags'.
When you are birthing at home it is your midwifes job to keep an eye out for these signs and to inform you of what they could mean, leaving the decision in your hands to transfer to the hospital in a non-emergent situation.
Also it is standard of practice to call an ambulance if in the final stages of labour there are any signs of distress. The EMS people will be waiting outside of your door just in case you need them. If you don't, they just head out.
The research and statistics show that it is EQUALLY safe to have your baby at home or in the hospital. The research also tells us you are LESS likely to have a unscheduled cesarean, or an assisted delivery when you birth at home.
That means if avoiding unnecessary interventions is one of your birth goals then choosing a midwife as your provider and considering a home birth are definitely worth discussing with your trusted team.
"There are many reasons people plan a home birth with a midwife. Ontario-based research tells us that midwifery clients who choose home births have many things in common.
value a birth without medical intervention (if not needed)
are confident in their ability to give birth
find their home a supportive and comfortable environment
feel more in control in their home environment
prefer to move freely in familiar surroundings
want to eat and drink as they like
believe labour will go faster in the comfort of their own home
prefer to avoid an epidural
believe recovery from birth will be easier where they are most comfortable
believe that home birth is safe, responsible choice for themselves and their babies"
The above quote is from the Ontario Midwives website and there is a whole lot of incredible information there.