By Jane Palmer
As a midwife I have been privileged to be present at births in many and varied places; hospital labour wards, operating theatres, motel rooms, peoples' homes and even a Tee Pee on a farm. While hospitals are essential if complications arise and are another choice of birth place for women, birthing at home is wonderful and sacred. The labour unfolds at it's own pace and birth occurs in it's own time with less likelihood of complications occurring. Women are more likely to feel supported and comfortable in their own environment as they travel the birth journey.
Homebirth Articles, Stories and Videos on our website
The Home-Water-Lotus Birth of Lukas Singh Cheema
"Verena and Bobby are excited to welcome their second son Lukas Singh Cheema into this wonderful world. He was born on Wednesday the 19th
of June 2013 at 12.40pm through a natural home-lotus birth in water at 38 ½ weeks (49 cm and 2.9 kg). We are very thankful for this empowering birth experience and overjoyed to have Lukas, a very amazing, calm, alert and healthy child, in our lives." This article tells the heart-warming lotus birth of Lukas Singh Cheema.
Risk of Haemorrhage is Higher in Hospital than Home
"The debate on which is better for birth – hospital or home – is one which often generates strong and emotive responses. On one side are campaigners demanding that baby’s lives are being put at risk ... On the other side we have campaigners demanding the right to choose their place of birth" Yvette Barton gives the facts and details on the risks and benefits of homebirth over hospital birth.
"I can still remember clearly the day my husband Pete and I found out we were pregnant. After eighteen months of trying to conceive, we were in shock when we saw the two lines on the pregnancy test. It was real!" This article by Amanda Kane tells the inspiring story of her personal homebirth experience.
Beyond the "Homebirth Horror" Headlines
"A woman in Victoria, who had had two previous caesarean sections, researched her birthing options online when she next became pregnant and chose to have a homebirth based largely, the article states, on information found online that supported this option. Tragically, her baby died." This article by Karol Petrovska dispels the misleading information on homebirth.
Isambard's Birth Story
"I knew this baby wanted to come to us fast, but I didn't expect to go into labour before forty weeks. I felt a trickle just as I was falling asleep about 1 am on Saturday 7th May, exactly thirty nine weeks! I found it really hard to get to sleep. Where are the contractions, if this is it? And what about being Group B Strep positive?" This inspiring homebirth story of Isambard, gives a deep insight into what goes through a mother's mind when giving birth.
Yiri's Bush Birth
"Country spoke to us and sent us the totems of the new teachers that would come into our lives during this new chapter. Country also began to speak about the learning journey that mother and new child would commence together. Country showed us a waterfall and gave us ochre to dance." Fleur Magick tells the incredible story of her baby, Yiri's bush birth.
Publicly Funded Homebirth
"In Australia Homebirth is a contentious issue. For many years now we have heard of the increased risk to babies and mothers of homebirth, and read stories of homebirth tragedy splashed on newspaper billboards. We have also seen reports of the protests of pro-homebirth midwives, women and their families fighting for a woman’s right to choose where they give birth." This article provides an interesting look on how homebirth is seen in the Australian community.
Aminah Anne's Birth Story
A golden needle was gently pushed into my upper wrist. "What do you think, boy or girl?" I asked. "Definitely the pulse of a girl!" replied my wonderful Japanese acupuncturist, Jacqui. I was excited but cautious. At 46 years of age I was amazed that I would be having another baby ... let alone perhaps, a girl after two boys?
Matthew's Birth Story
"On November 28, 2011, I was 40 weeks and 1 day pregnant with Matthew. I awoke in the morning and remembered that this was the exact same day of gestation on which Sara was born. It occurred to me that maybe he would make his appearance that day as well. I didn’t really think he would, but it crossed my mind." This story tells us about the amazing and unexpected birth of Matthew Ali Zavieh
Birth and Homebirth-A Grandmother’s point of view
"As a mother and grandmother I felt compelled to write my story about my births and more significantly about the wonderful experience of being present at my youngest daughter’s homebirth of her second child, Ivy Grace." Jan Baxter writes as a grandmother showing her point of view on homebirths, while telling us the amazing experiences she has had with her own family.
Home or Hospital? Is there a 'best' birthing option?
In this public lecture, one of ten in the 2012 UTSpeaks series, Professor Caroline Homer explores the history of birth and the debate that rages today in regards to the importance of birth place and practices, women’s rights to choose, and the politics that drive public policy.
Sally – The Birthing Goddess
Sally, a strong woman bringing her first baby into this world, has worked with her breath and movement all night and now the time of birth has arrived. In this moving letter, Sally's midwife Robyn shares the entrance of baby Gabrielle into the world.
Homebirths or births at home: It’s simply not the same thing
This article discusses the issue that intervention rates during childbirth have skyrocketed over the past ten years in Australia, leaving many women traumatised and fearful. A first time mother in Australia now has a greater chance of having surgical intervention during her birth than of not having it.
Along came Ava
In 2007, pregnant for the first time, I knew I wanted one thing: continuity of care. Based on the experiences of those around me, I had formed the opinion that birth was a medical event.
The determination governing collaboration for private practice midwives has changed – It’s about time
Ministers recommended an extension of the professional indemnity insurance exemption for privately practising midwives until June 2015, enabling midwives providing homebirth services to have assurance that they would not be forced to abandon women or face prosecution for violating registration requirements.
The homebirth of Miss Maggie Rose
The homebirth of Miss Maggie Rose. Looking back I had prodomal labour for at least a week prior to her birth. After numerous false starts, especially in the evenings ... it was all starting to wear very thin.
Publicly Funded Homebirth Programs
Publicly funded homebirth is available for a small number of women in programs across Australia. The number of publicly funded homebirth programs is growing. If you are eligible for Medicare these programs are free.
Out of the Laboratory: Back to the Darkened Room
Out of the laboratory: back to the darkened room is one of the best articles on homebirth I've read. Tricia Anderson, who passed away in 2007, had a special gift as a midwife and a writer. I wanted to honour her by keeping some of her work alive.
Risk is in the Eye of the Beholder
The medical system and home birthing women perceive risk differently and are willing to take different risks based on different motives, but while each ones perception is different, it is not less or wrong, just different. What is ‘right’ and ‘best’ can only be determined by each individual.
Jarred's BirthBirth Story
- Jane Palmers account of the birth of her second baby Jarred, born at home in water. Jarred's birth was hard but satifying though there were some unexpected outcomes.