Home Water Birth with Co-care from OBGYN

Megan found out she was pregnant in November of 2020 and was immediately interested in pursuing a home birth, inspired by her sister’s three beautiful home births and a desire to learn to trust her body in this new way. Throughout pregnancy Megan received care through her insurance provided OB alongside what she would call the most wonderful homebirth midwifery practice, Meadowsweet Midwifery. Megan was so spoiled with her midwives, who at almost every appointment would speak to what they called the ‘symphony of heartbeats’ as they would point out the baby, Megan’s, and the cord all sounding through the doppler.

The day before her due date, Megan began experiencing labor waves picking up and had her doula come over to labor with her. Around 5:00pm her water broke quite dramatically and the waves started coming very quickly! The midwives arrived later in the evening, and Megan was still sitting at around 2cm dilated at 10:30pm. Megan labored in bed with her peanut ball and husband until 1:30 when she was desperate to get into the labor tub — after being checked and measuring in at 8cm after just three hours, the pool was a huge relief.

home water birth story

Getting in the pool, Megan began getting pushy very quickly and after just 28 minutes of pushing, delivered her beautiful baby boy Orson Zachary into the world on his due date, after just seven hours of labor! Postpartum recovery was more than Megan was expecting, but with a great support system, it was primarily positive. Orson is now 5 months old and the most magical person Megan knows. 

Megan Stanton Bio

Megan lives with her husband, five month old son, dog, cat and chickens in Denver, Colorado, where she practices as an infant and early childhood mental health therapist and her husband pastors at a local church. Megan also loves to rock climb and teaches pottery classes at a local rec center, though all of those things are a bit in flux as she orients to life as a Mother! 

Resources

Aeroflow Breastpumps

Part II of this episode is sponsored by Aeroflow Breastpumps. Aeroflow has helped thousands of new and expecting parents discover the breastfeeding and postpartum essentials covered by their insurance including breast pumps and maternity compression and postpartum recovery products, they take care of everything – including all paperwork, working with your insurance company, and explaining your options to get these free essentials shipped straight to your door.

Aeroflow offers all major breast pump brands including Medela, Spectra, Motif, Lansinoh, Ameda, Elvie, Willow and more.

All you have to do is go to the Aeroflow Breastpumps website and fill out their free and easy Qualify Through Insurance form. Be sure to go to aeroflowbreastpumps.com/birthhour so they will know we sent you! Bonus — use the promo code “TBH15” in their online shop for 15% off all supplies and accessories.

Hospital Induction, Miscarriage, and Empowering Birth Center Water Birth

Kelly’s birth journey began with her first pregnancy, which despite the long bout of nausea, was smooth and low-risk. She had a hospital induction at 40+3, and delivered her daughter after 36 exhausting hours of labor with the aid of an epidural.

A few years later and after a miscarriage at 8 weeks, she got pregnant with her second daughter. Though this pregnancy, like her first, was relatively smooth and low-risk, it was anxiety-inducing after her recent loss. However, after a lot of prayer, she felt at peace and eventual excitement for the new baby.

After the birth experience with her first daughter, which was long and not particularly empowering, Kelly knew she wanted something different this time around. After researching and listening to various birth stories, she decided she wanted a birth center birth. Her second daughter came as a result of spontaneous labor with her water breaking at 40+3. After laboring for 13 hours, though only 3 hours were active labor, Kelly got the water birth she’d dreamed of, and the empowering birth experience she’d wanted this second birth to be.

sibling at birth center

Kelly Batchelder Bio

Kelly is 37 and lives in Marietta, Georgia with her husband Steven of 11 years and their two daughters, Estella (age 4) and Pearl (1 month). She teaches English at Kennesaw State University for her professional gig, and teaches group fitness at a local gym for her personal gig. While both of those jobs bring her joy, the most fulfilling parts of her life are being a wife and mother. You can connect with Kelly via Instagram @kellybatchelder

Resources

Babylist

Part I of this episode is sponsored by Babylist. The people at Babylist believe that you should be able to get exactly what you need for your unique and growing family. That’s why their baby registry easily lets you add any item from any store. Plus, Babylist helps you each step of the way with their customized checklist, product guides and reviews, and personal registry consultants. They’ve even got group gifting! Start your registry today to be eligible for a free Hello Baby Box of goodies for baby worth over $100 while boxes last.

Aeroflow Breastpumps

Part II of this episode is sponsored by Aeroflow Breastpumps. Aeroflow has helped thousands of new and expecting parents discover the breastfeeding and postpartum essentials covered by their insurance including breast pumps and maternity compression and postpartum recovery products, they take care of everything – including all paperwork, working with your insurance company, and explaining your options to get these free essentials shipped straight to your door.

Aeroflow offers all major breast pump brands including Medela, Spectra, Motif, Lansinoh, Ameda, Elvie, Willow and more.

All you have to do is go to the Aeroflow Breastpumps website and fill out their free and easy Qualify Through Insurance form. Be sure to go to aeroflowbreastpumps.com/birthhour so they will know we sent you! Bonus — use the promo code “TBH15” in their online shop for 15% off all supplies and accessories.

Three Births: PROM, Prodromal Labor, Irritable Uterus, and Precipitous Birth

First Birth: Oshiolema Atogwe in 2015. Age 24. 

We used the Bradley method and really wanted a water birth but knew our birth center would only allow laboring in the water but not delivering in the water since it was attached to the hospital. Incredibly easy pregnancy. Water broke at 38 weeks to the day after a cervical check that morning and my body simply wasn’t ready. I was told at the 22 hour mark that if some progress wasn’t made soon, I’d have to start considering other options. I was devastated when the team switched over to the midwife I was least fond of since it had been 12 hours but that midwife added essential oils to my belly that finally started progression. After 24 hours of labor with a plateau (natural alignment plateau) after the water, a cervical lip and two hours of pushing, I gave birth on a birthing stool and delivered him myself. My placenta fell right onto the floor, he punched his way out and I had absolutely horrible tearing. Postpartum healing and breastfeeding were incredibly challenging and it was a traumatic experience. 

using-water-in-birth

Second Birth: Keogena Atogwe in 2016. Age 26. 

I dedicated so much time and effort to making sure I learned how to push and to better prepare my body for labor through spinning babies, six dates a day, borage oil, red raspberry leaf tea and so on. I got really painful varicose veins and had placenta previa so the pregnancy was a bit more challenging, especially since my son was 11 months old when I found out I was pregnant. We moved late in my third trimester and I quickly found a midwife team and doula. I had false labor a few times and started to get so discouraged but at 39 weeks, went into labor and it was six hours start to finish. Relaxing worship music and focus were so helpful. She was born in the water and it was the most healing birth-exactly what I had prayed for. I had the teeniest tiniest tear and recovery was so much more smooth. 

Miscarriage in 2018

Third birth: Zeameh Atogwe in 2020. Age 30. 

I found out I was pregnant less than a month after my sister’s full term stillbirth. This pregnancy was filled with physical and emotional difficulty. Pregnancy after loss (my miscarriage and my sister’s stillbirth) and my first pregnancy with autoimmune disease made me really have to battle for hope and confidence. I was diagnosed with “irritable uterus” at 9 weeks which I thought was a joke, but it set the tone for the pregnancy. I had Braxton Hicks very early and contractions that would follow a pattern from 22 weeks. I kept hearing about precipitous birth at every turn and began to think it might happen for me. The pandemic hit right as I entered my third trimester and changed everything. Added so much anxiety and sleep became almost impossible. For the final couple months, I was waking up and staying up every night with Braxton Hicks and for the final three weeks, I had prodromal labor every single night. Sometimes my contractions lasted 5 minutes which I learned was my body trying to get the baby in position— the pandemic meant no chiropractor or prenatal massage which I had previously relied on. I tore my abdomen, my varicose veins were off the charts and I was just so deeply uncomfortable that I started to feel depressed and scared I wouldn’t even be excited to have the baby. The very day I expressed that thought, my water broke at 11pm. My parents came, I labored until morning and I thought I was going to give birth in the car. I went from a 4 to a 10 in about a 15 minute period. Labor from the first hard contraction to holding her in my arms was two hours. Recovery was a dream, she was a dream and I was back home three hours later. 

Postpartum: pandemic postpartum was difficult and lonely. I felt so sorry my husband was taking care of everything and everyone. We also ended up getting COVID-19 when she was 4 weeks old and that meant we needed to be even more isolated which was devastating but I’m thankful to have walked through it. 

jill atogwe birth stories

Jill Atogwe is a wife to Oshiomogho and mother to Oshiolema, Keogena and Zeameh living in Dallas, Texas. She is an artist and lifestyle blogger behind Gold & Graphite and is always searching for the beauty in every day life. 
Connect with her via her website: goldandgraphite.com, instagram.com/jillatogwe or Email: jkatogwe@gmail.com

Resources

Expectful

This episode is sponsored by Expectful – the #1 guided meditation & sleep app for your fertility, pregnancy, and motherhood journey. Just like you probably take a prenatal vitamin for your body, Expectful’s meditations are like a prenatal vitamin for your mind and can help you have a happier, healthier journey to parenthood. Whether you are TTC, pregnant, or postpartum, everything in the Expectful app was made just for this special moment in your life and created based on interviews with hopeful, expecting, and new parents just like you. Ready to reduce stress, improve sleep, and connect with your little one? Go to expectful.com/birthhour or download Expectful in the App Store to get started with a free trial today. 

Precipitous Homebirth Birth Story with Logan Randazzo

Logan and Brian are parents to five, four girls and their newest arrival, their son Maverick Moon. This was Logan’s third homebirth and one of the goals was for the midwife to make it this time! Logan shared her previous birth stories on episode 441. You can listen to those here.

With a history of quick labors, and the fourth birth having only 40 minutes start to finish, the midwife and videographer arrived after the birth of their fourth daughter, Primrose, who was born at home unassisted. This fifth birth was a little different. It was the first time Logan went into labor without any natural induction methods, and it took a while before she believed she was actually in labor. So much so that she sent her husband to work only 90 minutes before the birth and he had to turn around on the highway to make it home only 30 minutes before Maverick was born! Unexpected, a tad chaotic, but everything turned out just as it was supposed to as their surprise Baby Moon was born only 12 hours after his Blessingway the night before.  Connect with her on IG @loganrandazzo.

Resources

Cord Blood Registry

Today’s episode was sponsored by @CordBloodRegistry, also known as CBR. CBR has helped millions of parents bank their children’s newborn stem cells. Newborn stem cells have amazing potential for treatments in the future and cord blood stem cells have already been used for thirty years in stem cell transplants. It’s kind of like investing in your baby’s future health.

For a limited time, CBR is offering The Birth Hour listeners some pretty big discounts. Go to cordblood.com and use code: HOUR to get 60% off the Newborn Stem Cell Bundle which includes both cord blood and tissue banking. Visit their website to learn more about how newborn stem cell preservation could protect your whole family and why CBR is the #1 most recommended cord blood bank by families and OB/GYNs.

Birth Center Birth Story with 4 Siblings in Attendance

A few days before Jenny was 41 weeks with her fifth baby, she came to the Midwife Center to start a natural induction – pumping and walking. After a few hours, her water broke and her labor began. Her family was planning to be present for the birth as well as her two friends who were photographer friends, and her mom and sister. Everyone arrived and Jenny’s labor continued to become more active. During the hardest parts of labor she used toning and spent some time in the tub. There were no surprises until it was time to push and it was much harder than she expected. She realized she needed to push through the pain and when she did, Norma was born surrounded by her thrilled siblings. Watch the video from Norma’s birth: https://vimeo.com/203038501

Jenny Stein Bio

Jenny Stein lives with her husband and five kids in Pittsburgh, PA. Her oldest child is finishing high school and her youngest is in preschool. She gave birth to all of her children with the midwives at The Midwife Center of Pittsburgh. She has been a support person for friends while they were giving birth and also photographed births for families. She loves taking photos of her family life and also loves talking about family photography on her podcast, The Family Photographer.  Connect with her on instagram.

Babylist

Today’s episode is sponsored by Babylist. The people at Babylist believe that you should be able to get exactly what you need for your unique and growing family. That’s why their baby registry easily lets you add any item from any store. Plus, Babylist helps you each step of the way with their customized checklist, product guides and reviews, and personal registry consultants. They’ve even got group gifting! Start your registry today to be eligible for a free Hello Baby Box of goodies for baby worth over $100 while boxes last.

Nairobi, Kenya Home Water Birth Story

Before she was even pregnant, Loi had read all there is to read about pregnancy and childbirth. She knew that she wanted an unmedicated birth, and began to prepare herself by learning all she could about labor and delivery. After a smooth pregnancy, Loi had a home water birth with a midwife attending in Nairobi, Kenya!

Loi Awat Bio

Loi Awat is a creative and business writer from Nairobi, Kenya. She has eight years’ experience as a TV writer, creative writing coach, and organizational grant writer. She’s an aspiring author with a passion for children’s books, fantasy, and Afrofuturism.

water birth kenya

Motif Medical

This episode was sponsored by Motif Medical. Motif designs insurance-eligible products for busy moms. With a focus on innovation and empowerment, Motif’s line of breast pumps and maternity compression garments are sophisticated, yet discreet, and made to support mothers as they navigate new motherhood. Discover why moms are reporting more milk in less time with the Luna breast pump, and see how you can get it covered through insurance at motifmedical.com/birthhour