Wow! I can't believe that I'm already at 35 weeks! My appointment went very well today according to midwifery assistant Bennett (He's measuring my belly.) and I'm right on track for homebirth #4.
The next appointment (37 weeks) is a biggie and a major milestone when planning a homebirth. It's the visit typically known as the "home visit". Of course, I've been blessed to have all of my visits at my house but if your midwife is local, you travel to her office/home for your appointments and it's at 37 weeks when she comes to your home to make sure you have everything ready and all supplies on hand.
The reason that 37 weeks is an important milestone is that if you go into labor any time before that, you risk out of a homebirth for the health of the mother and baby. So far, I've had no risk factors for pre-term labor, great blood pressure, and appropriate weight gain which is also taken into consideration so I'll be excited when I officially pass into my 37th week.
At the home visit, here's what my midwife will be checking to make sure I have ready:
- Birth Kit (to be ordered from Baby, Birth & Beyond- kinda sounds like Bed, Bath and Beyond don't you think?)- contains about 20 different items including gloves, peri bottle, cord clamp, thermometer, chux pads, etc.)
- Phone Numbers and Emergency Birth Instructions posted - phone numbers of my ob/gyn and hospital should a transfer be needed, as well as a copy of my records
- Infant Car Seat - oh yeah, I've got to get that out of the attic! Safety guidelines state using one not older than 5 years old- surely my six year old one will do, right???
- For Mom- 2 sets of clean sheets and pillowcases, 6 bath towels and washcltohs, Nursing gowns/tank tops
- For Baby- receiving blandkets/baby blankets, 2 newborn hats, baby's first outfit, newborn diapers
- Supplies- 2 rolls paper towels, 1 box drawstring trashbags, 4- 30 gal. trash bags, 2 plastic dropcloths, 2 large bowls, 1 flashlight w/ new batteries, 1 package overnight pads, lysol wipes, one new package toilet paper, small bottle of olive oil, 1 package waterproof underpads, 1 package moist toilet wipes, 1 bottle alcohol
- Car with gas tank at least 1/2 full
- Extra person for sibling care
- Birth tub with hoses
- Food and Drink- Light food: yogurt, eggs, toast, grapes, chicken broth, 2 qt. clear juice, mother's favorite hearty meal for after the birth, Emergen-C packs
- Ice Options- Lots of ice cubes for drinks and cold packs, reusable gelpacks or Ziploc bags with crushed ice
- Optional Items- Coffee for midwives and helpers, honey for energy, favorite music, camera batteries, video camera battery and someone to film, candles, birth ball, rice or flax sock for heat/cold, crockpot for warm compresses, large handheld mirror
Seriously, they have thought of everything!