Mum thanks midwives for home birth dream come true

Lisa Spelling was looking forward to a healthy, happy pregnancy, except that her weight meant that medical professionals had labelled her as “high risk.”

Although this may not be a major issue in theory, for Lisa this label meant that her desire to plan a natural home birth with minimal intervention was not fully supported.

Lisa, 34, said: “When I first registered with my midwife at my GP surgery, I was told my increased Body Mass Index meant I’d ticked the ‘high risk’ box on the forms.

“It was explained to me that my pregnancy would be under consultant-led care and I would have to birth in the labour ward at the hospital, which I really did not want.”

Women who are classified significantly overweight or obese are considered to be at greater risk of conditions such as gestation diabetes, preeclampsia and labour problems, and are statistically more likely to experience pregnancy loss.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recently updated their guidelines to reflect evidence that suggests midwife-led units and home births are safer than hospitals for women having a straightforward (low risk) pregnancy who have already had one child previously.Spelling family

It is recommended that women who are at higher risk of experience complications should give birth in a hospital environment where they are better equipped to deal with a range of emergency situations. However, the final choice of where to give birth still lies with the mother and in some cases she may feel that a home birth with midwife support is the appropriate option for her family.

Following an assessment by a hospital consultant, Lisa was found to be in good health and so was transferred back to midwifery care.

Despite this, her wish for a home birth was met with some concern by midwives.

She says: “At one appointment, I wanted to discuss how we arranged having a midwife for a home birth, but instead the midwife told me I was being very irresponsible choosing a home birth and spent the next 20 minutes lecturing me on the risks I was taking.”

After this meeting, Lisa looked into her options and found One to One Midwives, a government funded service that offers pregnancy, birth and post-natal care.

She decided to self-refer to the service when she was 35 weeks pregnant, and soon met midwife Rene Hall to discuss her birthing options.

Lisa says: “It might sound quite dramatic, but speaking to One to One Midwives I felt my world change. I had finally found a group of women who understood how I felt and supported the way I wanted to give birth.

“She gave me all the information for different choices, explained all the pros and cons, and discussed the options with me before supporting me in whatever choice I made.”

After conducting a full risk assessment, midwife Rene and team mate Tess were happy to attend Lisa at a planned home birth.

On the 20th Dec, 2014, Lisa’s wish came true as she gave birth to baby Ella-Rose at home with her husband Chris by her side.

Reflecting on the birth, Lisa said: “I am looking forward to telling Ella-Rose about how she was born into this world, while sitting on the bed in the room she born in, and about the fabulous ladies who helped mummy do it.”

One-to-One Midwives are recruiting in Essex. If interested, email rosie.ferguson@121midwives.co.uk or call 0330 330 9121.

Source: Essex County Standard