How A Planned Homebirth Became An Empowering Freebirth | Sarah's Birth Story
My birth story started long before the birth of Katalina, it started when I found out I was pregnant.
I made the decision I wanted this pregnancy to have as limited medical intervention possible and I would birth at home.
For me, this decision led me onto experiencing an amazing pregnancy and inadvertently a “free birth”.
I Wanted Minimal Medical Intervention During Pregnancy
I found a beautiful midwife who supported my choices and met with me once a month throughout my pregnancy where we had a chat and completed a couple of checks – fundal height, BP and baby’s position and heart rate, my only medical intervention being 2 blood tests and an ultrasound to check placental location.
By reducing my exposure to the medicalized antenatal system I was able to connect with my body and baby in a way that was not experienced my first time around.
I put 100% faith into my body, knowing it knew exactly what to do to grow a healthy baby.
I Felt Fiercely Protective Of My Birth Space
As Katalina’s due date approached I found myself experiencing some unresolved emotions from my first birthing experience, I felt fiercely protective of my birth space and wanted to maintain that sacred relationship I had built between my body and baby.
A Very Different Birth Experience
Finally at 40 & 5 weeks pregnant (approx) on 17/01/2022 I started to feel the early twinges of labor around 1pm, seeing I had been experiencing prodromal labor for the past week or so I was taking those cramps with a grain of salt, spending the day binging on Netflix in bed.
At 7pm I felt a pop sensation that made me jump up, my waters had broken with a hind water leak.
I messaged my midwife to let her know labor had started, she responded to let her know once the surges strengthened and became rhythmical.
A Strong Woman In The Moment
I told Steve, who suggested he prepare the pool, I responded not to rush, this would be going all night as he sat down to eat and prepared to shower William.
Shortly after I began timing the contractions as they grew in intensity quickly and were nearing 1 minute a part.
I went out to Steve and told him I needed him and to start getting William showered.
Steve put William in the shower then came into the bedroom to start preparing the birthing pool, blowing it up and then to fill it with water.
At this point I started yelling at him to hurry up, the contractions becoming more and more intense, his perceived dawdling and my increasing urgency sparked recognition in me as I began to transition, I headed for the bathroom pulling the TENS machine off my back with the realization the birth pool wouldn’t be ready in time.
The pressure in my pelvis had me on my knees at the baths edge in the ensuite as I quickly transferred into the shower, the water pressure giving me relief on my back on all fours.
I reached down to feel the beginnings of a crowning head, I moved onto one knee in preparation for birth, with each surge I supported the birth of my baby’s head, Steve returned to the bathroom where I let him know the baby’s head was out and he called my midwife to let her know as she continued her journey to my house – an hour away.
He left me again to go and retrieve William from the shower and call my Mum.
I continued to birth in the shower, feeling my baby rotate in preparation for final birth, I felt the most intense sense of calm, internalizing, unaware of my surrounds outside of the shower screen walls, it was me and my baby – and we “had this”.
William came running into the bathroom opening the shower screen just in time to witness the miracle of his sister being born, with two more surges I guided baby through as I perched on one knee, I sucked some fluid from her mouth as she took her first breaths, the intense calmness in the moment resulting in a cry free birth as I pulled her to my chest and with that, I had just birthed my baby all by myself!
Steve arrived in shock wrapping us up in a towel and preparing us a space in our bed to process the events that had just unfolded, 30 minutes later my support team arrived and we spent time sitting in bed talking and allowing me the time to birth my placenta.
My labor and birth was less than 90 minutes, it was so intense, it was so fast, but it was the most empowering thing I have ever done, the pain of birth was nothing in comparison to my first birth, I attribute this to being in control, no medical intervention, no distractions, a calm, quiet physiological birth, exactly as nature and our bodies intended and of course The Thompson Method and it’s incredible and empowering education 💓
William and his newborn sister Kitty ❤️
Dr Robyn Thompson, experienced midwife and founder of The Thompson Method commented on her early experience with Sarah as a first time mother.
"From my early connection with Sarah there was an instinctive recognition of her motherly strength, her self-knowledge and her instincts. We met in relation to breastfeeding with her first born William and Sarah has continued to breastfeed and tandem feed through her journey. This led Sarah and I on another journey, whereby she became one of the first two Thompson Method Practitioners within my practice. This has continued to this day, where Sarah now observes and listens to women with breastfeeding complications during online consultations."
"As an elder Registered Nurse, Registered Midwife, Maternal Child & Family Health Nurse and now a PHD, I feel very privileged to have Sarah as an integral part of my Team, assisting Women with breastfeeding complications. Mentoring Sarah in her new role as a Thompson Method Breastfeeding Practitioner has been a real pleasure. We have, together with the consent of women, been side-by-side for an amazing number of live online breastfeeding sessions. Consequently, when Sarah successfully completed the Breastfeeding Academy (co-created by the wonderful Rachael Weisse Austin, Head of TTM Education), Sarah is now fulfilling her role in a very caring, gentle way with breastfeeding women seeking her assistance. I am so proud of her", says Dr Robyn.