Thursday, November 12, 2009

Water births

I was contacted tonight by a wonderful client that I had the privilege to attend two births for almost a decade ago.  And in between those two births, I attended her mom's fourth birth as her doula.   So fun to be part of a family's growth.  She is now due with #3 - yeah!  But she brought up the thought of waterbirth in a comment she made to my blog. So I thought this might be a great time to discuss the value of a waterbirth.  Her 2nd birth and her mom's fourth birth were both done in the same birthing room - and were waterbirths.

Sutter Davis, the Birth Center and homebirth are the 3 places you can achieve a waterbirth currently in our area.  If there are more places available - please let me know!  But I see such a great value to waterbirth.  First of all, the tub is relaxing to the laboring mom - she can get lost in the flow and feel of warm water and with low lights and quiet voices, it can be so calming to the birth.When a contraction rises, a mom can have movement in the water while feeling supported by the water, almost acting like another support person.  Also dads have entered the tub  and provided physical support and enjoyed sharing in the birth of their child up close and personal.

So some of the basic elements for dealing with labor are presented by a water birth - heat from the temperature of the water, physical support from the bouyancy of the water, movement, lower lights, and a more intimate sense for a mom to give into the labor process.

And when a baby finally emerges and is put up to mom's chest to be snuggled, there is such joy and peace in the room.  The babies seem calmer and when allowed to float on their back in the water with mom or dad supporting their head, they literally unfurl.  So amazing.  See the comment on my last entry that Julie made - she says it better than I can.

So are waterbirths worth working for?  I say a resounding YES.