In this episode, we have the joy of chatting with Olivia and Will, parents to sweet 7-week-old baby Audrey.
Olivia and Will share the story of their journey to choosing home birth, planning for it, and then discovering at 37 weeks pregnant that it was no longer a viable option for them.
Olivia is a neonatal nurse in the NICU - so she sees all the things that can go wrong. This was part of the reason why she and Will didn’t want to be a hospital for Audrey’s birth. She’s also very transparent about not being 100% confident in the decision and having reservations about sharing their plans with others for fear of judgement and less than powerful conversation.
It’s also wild to hear the difference in healthcare costs and options in different countries (see show notes on our website for an email from Olivia all about it). Olivia and Will live in Australia and while planning their home birth they only spent about $60 for a general practitioner visit and the cost of a birthing pool. Whether they chose to birth at home or in the hospital, it would be free!
After they learned they could no longer have a home birth, they worked on finding peace with the situation and preparing themselves for having an amazing birth experience despite the change in plans. Olivia still labored most of the time at home, before traveling to the birthing center where they had their daughter Audrey.
Olivia and Will are such a beautiful couple and we’re so happy to have connected with them to share their inspiring story on the podcast!
Check out www.momsneedsleep.com/home to learn about Reverie and their amazing power bed that helps pregnant moms and new moms get the best sleep possible.
A special post interview email from Olivia:
After we finished the call I realized we never even spoke about the differences in our healthcare system - i.e. everything being free! Also about how we weren't able (didn't feel like) we could share our home birth choice with people, especially at work, for fear of judgment. Although I'm sure that's quite a common issue surrounding home birth.
I would have liked to share a few things, but completely forgot/got side tracked!
During pregnancy I had lots of severe SIJ pain, which really impacted negatively on exercise - I wasn't able run or do much cardio. So I walked everyday for about an hour at the beach with the dogs & listened to amazing empowering podcasts like yours! And I also went swimming, 3 times a week while I was working & then when I went on maternity leave at 34 weeks, I swam 5 times a week. I just loved the freedom! And I wanted to make sure baby was in a good position, I wanted to avoid a breech or posterior baby & swimming is great for that!
I saw a chiropractor regularly for my hip pain which also really helped. But it was so bad at times that I couldn't work (one night I had to crawl to the bathroom because I couldn't walk!).
I floated every single week up til 37 weeks in a float tank! I think it was the best thing I could have done. The relaxation was an absolute blessing & it helped with aching legs towards the end too. It was also really lovely because baby moved a lot in the tank, so I felt really connected (maybe I just noticed it more - my placenta was at the front, so I struggled to feel lots of movement).
I think the most important message to pass on to women preparing for home birth - or just birth in general - is just to surround yourself with positive birth stories. Don't let the negative vibes in! Things didn't go to plan, but I'm so glad I didn't go into birth & delivery being scared of it - i was excited! I love our birth story & I'm so grateful to have had the opportunity to plan & prepare for a home birth, even if it didn't work out that way. We have a beautiful baby girl, & that's really all that matters!
Lots of love