From the Homebirth Discussion List

M's question:

This is to those of you who have had a waterbirth. Why did you choose this method? I've read a bit about it and have only half-seriously entertained the idea. I'm 28 weeks now. Is this enough time to prepare? Or should I just forget it this time and prepare for next time?

Catherine S. answers:

Yes, absolutely there is time to prepare. I changed plans to a home waterbirth at the over 30 weeks point (over 35 weeks if I remember correctly) . . .

Why waterbirth? For me, water is very soothing. The ocean, the pool, a stream, a bath, a shower . . . these water places relax me . . . The sounds of flowing water, salty sea smells, the sensation of the water flowing across my skin, the warmth of steam rising from a hot bath, the sight of still, placid water, the view of a powerful waterfall crashing down over a cliff. These things generalize into symbols that are very meaningful to me, that I used in labor. . . Water always gives but it has the power to move forcefully and move things in its path. Water can erode the strongest rocks with its strong persistant flow. Water, like birth, flows freely if it is not contained . . .

There are dozens of reasons I chose a home waterbirth. These reasons touch on very, very simple things (like the warmth of a warm pool of water surrounding me is very soothing . . . ) to archetypal and purely emotional reasons . . . from the bag of waters swimming freely into the water of life . . .

-- Catherine S.