The title of this book is what caught my attention, which is exactly why, I’m sure, it was given that title. I mean, a homebirth in the hospital sounds like the best of both worlds, right? If women could do that they would be able to have their cake and eat it too. Sounds great, right?
Many women cannot or choose not to have homebirths, but still want the good juju vibes that homebirths are known for. By now, lots of women have now all seen the documentary The Business of Being Born, know about homebirths, their benefits and have atleast considered the idea at some point. However, for whatever reason, for them a homebirth is off the table.
Enter the homebirth in the hospital. Is this possible? What does this even mean? These ideas (and lots of birth stories!) are what was discussed in the book Homebirth in the Hospital and in this post I will tell you my take on the whole idea. Sound good?
Before I begin let me just clarify one HUGE thing. Here’s the deal, I’m sorry to say but it is impossible to have a homebirth in the hospital. I have had a homebirth and attended many homebirths as a doula and a birth assistant. I hate to break it to you, but you just can’t perfectly re-create all that is a homebirth in a hospital. You just can’t.
“The first intervention in birth that a healthy woman takes is when she walks out the front door of her home in labor. From that first intervention, all others will follow.” – Michael Rosenthal, OB/GYN
However, I believe the author has great intentions, wants you to pick up her book and read it and by doing so can help you to have a better birth. I think that a more honest title would have been A Guide for Women Wanting the Awesomeness of a Homebirth but for Whatever Reason They’re at the Hospital. Knowing this ahead of time will make you less angry at the author and actually appreciate and value what she has to say. Or at least that would have helped me. 😉
Title: Homebirth in the Hospital
Author: Stacey Marie Kerr, MD
What I loved:
I really loved how the author gave specific, concrete tools to use in order to achieve “some of the awesomeness that is a homebirth in a hospital”. When you think about it, some of the major reasons women want homebirths is because they want birth to be on their terms, they want to be a part of the decision making process, they want to have a care provider that they literally trust with their life, and they want someone to be with them throughout their entire pregnancy and birth (ie – they want to know really know the person who will be at their birth and it not be a game of Russian roulette). It’s so helpful that these “Five C’s” were plainly spelled out – Choice, Communication, Continuity, Confidence, and Control of Protocols. Going into a pregnancy and using these tools as a guide will absolutely help create a better pregnancy and birth. And can I just say, if more women believed in these “Five C’s” and themselves (found their voice, stood up for themselves, etc.) that would be amazing.
Also, I really loved all the birth stories. I think they are pretty honest, accurate depictions of hospital births.
What I liked:
I liked that the author, Stacey Kerr, lived on The Farm for a time and had a baby in a birth center and another at The Farm. I feel like her formal training, coupled with her out of hospital experience personally and professionally, made her a great author for a book such as this. I think she really “gets it”, what women are wanting. Sure, we all want to be healthy and have healthy babies but there’s more to it than just that. If I had to have a baby in the hospital she would be a wonderful care provider.
What I learned:
Compromise is a part of life… and birth. Even with a home birth, you’re compromising access to instantaneous technology (which totally has its place!). No care provider is perfect. Nope, not one. One of the chapters in particular really stuck out to me when Dr. Kerr shared her fears of an upcoming high risk birth. It helped me to remember, really, that nobody is perfect, we are all very human and doing our best.
Also, giving up control (of certain things) is part of birth. It was nice to be reminded of that. So often us women try to control our births… which is literally impossible.
What this book is:
This is a great book for someone who is definitely having a hospital birth but would love to plan for a natural experience. This will give her the tools to do one very important thing – choose a care provider (which may not be the same person you see for GYN!). It will help her to know what to look and plan for beyond a particular birth outcome.
What this book is not:
This book won’t give you a magical formula or a guarantee for a particular birth outcome. In fact, nobody has a guarantee for a particular kind of birth or outcome. But it does show you what to look for in a birth experience and care provider so you are most satisfied in the end no matter what the outcome.
You can win a copy of this book by following the instructions below. A winner will be chosen at random from the comments on 1/2/15. Winners will be contacted by email and shared on Facebook. To see a full description our giveaway disclaimer click here. If you’re feeling unlucky, go ahead and purchase the book here.
Mandatory Entry: Leave a comment below just because.
Additional Entries: Share this giveaway on your favorite social media site. For every share leave a comment stating that you shared.