I’m so excited to be able to share Katelyn Perkins‘ birth stories. She was a huge inspiration to me when I was thinking about natural birth, as she had a natural birth at home and in the hospital. I’m very lucky to have her, not only as a great resource, but also as family! Please enjoy this quick Q & A with Katelyn, with her full birth stories coming soon!
1. What was your reason for choosing to birth outside of a hospital? Do you still feel comfortable with having a home birth, and would you do it again?
Katelyn: “Oh, I loved our home birth! Definitely hope to do it again.
I think the main reason I decided to birth at home was I felt it would give me the most support possible for the natural birth I wanted. Being able to eat, drink, move around freely, get in & out of the bathtub, nap in my own bed, having my family there, and my midwives who’ve helped hundreds of women and babies through the same process… it was just a very peaceful, wonderful experience. I love that this was the atmosphere my daughter got to enter the world in.”
2. Was there any added anxiety with giving birth for a second time, because you knew how painful labor can feel?
“Actually I was less nervous about my second birth because I felt like I knew what to expect. The first time I didn’t know if I could really do it. But the second time around my attitude was more like ‘I’ve done this before, I can do it again.'”
3. If you could do anything with labor differently in the future would you? (for ex having an episiotomy to avoid tearing?)
“Hmm I can’t think of anything I’d want to do differently next time… After my first birth I knew that next time I needed to rest more in early labor & save my energy for when I’d need it most later (instead of walking for days trying to strengthen contractions like I did the first time.) And that I wanted to hire a birth photographer to capture our first moments together. The second time around I did both of those things and am so glad! “
4. What was your worst postpartum experience?
“My worst postpartum experience had to be after my son was born (my first birth.) I just had a terribly hard time breastfeeding – engorgement so bad I couldn’t sleep at night, extremely sore nipples, plus a couple of back to back cases of mastitis… It was bad. But we worked through it! I was told in my breastfeeding class if you can make it to 6 weeks it will be easy. It sure wasn’t easy at first, but I’m really glad now that we stuck it out.”
5. Did you have a birth plan? If so, were you able to follow it?
“Yes, I actually had 2 birth plans, one for a home birth and one for if we had to transfer to a hospital (with things like if we had a C-section I still wanted to breastfeed right away, I didn’t want to be separated from the baby, I didn’t want baby to get the Vitamin K injection, etc.) I didn’t feel like I really needed to use it at home, since it was basically everything that my midwives did & encouraged anyway, but it was still worthwhile to think through & gave me more peace of mind.”