For 100,000 generations of human evolution, birth has existed as a normal life event, one of joyous celebration and intense initiation. Our species’ survival has depended on it and so birth itself has evolved and been designed to occur without a need for interventions or medical procedures. Wherever we choose to give birth we must feel comfortable, empowered, safe and relaxed. Since the beginning of creation, babies have been made and born at home. When animals give birth they generally wait until they can be alone and safe. We humans are not so different and we also need privacy to open ourselves to the power and mystery of birth. In the comfort of our home we can feel safe to open to these natural rhythms that have brought new life to this planet for hundreds of thousands of years. While trusting the process of birth we are able to tap into our greatest gift as women, the ability to create and bring forth life, therefore truly allowing the initiation of motherhood to flow through us.
In 1900 almost all U.S. births occurred at home. By 1940 that rate dropped to 44% and to 1% by 1969. Surprisingly, in less than 100 years hospitals became the common place for women to come for support during this sacred, powerful and life-changing event. Beginning in the 1970s a renewed interest in natural birth occurring at home with midwives began and has continued to have a revival in our country. Although there are still less than 4% of babies born at home and midwifery remains illegal in 12 states, many women are choosing to bring their babies into the world surrounded by loving hands. Midwife Lindsey Meehleis says it well: "When I first became a midwife, one of the main reasons was because the baby's experience of birth was just as important to me as the mother's. I had witnessed so much separation and disconnection from hospital staff as a doula. The startling observation of common practices as treating baby as checklist of things that had to be done, rather than a person starting new life, sickened me. Each birth that I am blessed to attend, I make it a ritual to slow things down after birth. There is no rushing, no separation, no loud voices discussing yesterday's football scores, no hats, no swaddled up burrito baby's...Just 100% pure uninterrupted bonding between family and this new life. Fingertip exploration, heart to heart bonding, deep eye connection & sacred communication. Welcomed into the world in a room filled with so much love. I promise you this friends, if every human was welcomed in this way...the world would change."