Meghan Markle’s home birth will be NOTHING like the average mum's – for a start Prince Harry won’t be holding the poo sieve
APPARENTLY Meghan Markle is considering a "natural" home birth. The yoga-mad 37-year-old is said to be researching pain relief-free options and has been practising hypnobirthing.
But, let's be frank, Meghan's at-home birth in Frogmore Cottage, a 10-bedroom home near Windsor Castle, isn't going to reflect the experience of the average mum.
For a start, she's rumoured to have the Queen's surgeon on hand. And, it's unlikely Prince Harry will be armed with a mop and bucket ready to clear up the mess.
Stephanie Nimmo opted for a home birth for her third child, having previously laboured in hospital.
Here, the 50-year-old from London shares the brutal reality of giving birth at home – from kids chucking toys at her to the cat wandering in – for non-royal mums.
I bet Kate Middleton is remembering her birth plans and smiling wryly to herself. She’s been through three labours and, unlike Meghan, knows the reality.
She chose the Lindo Wing for her three deliveries, despite the fact that wherever she chose to give birth there would be a complete medical team supporting her.
I remember those days, being pregnant with my first child and writing a very detailed birth plan.
While Meghan will have a medical team on standby and essentially a hospital set up at home for the average mum home births are very basic
I had it all sorted – even down to the music that I wanted played when my precious baby entered the world, preferably in a warm birth pool with dimmed lights and minimal medical intervention.
The plan was a far cry from the reality. Labour with Theo was long and protracted.
After hours of contractions my cervix had barely dilated. I was exhausted and the baby was showing signs of distress.
An oxytocin drip to speed things up sent my pain levels sky high and I was soon begging for an epidural.
Theo arrived, angrily screaming into the world with a cone-head thanks to a ventouse delivery. The birth plan had well and truly been thrown out of the window!
My second child, Xanthe was also born in hospital. The midwife asked my husband not to sing along to our birthing playlist so loudly as it was disturbing the other labouring mums and I’m sure that was a contributing factor to opting for a home water birth when I found I was pregnant again.
Giving birth at home is very different to having the security of a hospital setting and my home birth was radically different to anything Meghan will experience.
We hired a birth pool and set it up in the only space we had available: a room that doubled as home office, play room and general dumping ground
No soft lighting, meditation and gentle whale music for us, with two kids under the age of six at home space was at a premium.
We hired a birth pool and set it up in the only space we had available: a room that doubled as home office, play room and general dumping ground.
While the hospital had a lovely room with a birth pool plumbed in, we had what was essentially a glorified paddling pool with a blue plastic liner.
We bought a new garden hose to connect to a tap in the bathroom and fill the pool with warm water.
A couple of weeks before my due date the community midwife came to the house to deliver the birth kit plus a list of items I would need to provide; a bucket, a sieve for the birth pool (or pooper scooper as my ever romantic husband dubbed it), plastic sheeting and old towels.
My labour started a few days later and as the familiar pains started my husband connected the hosepipe to fill the pool and tried to persuade five-year-old Theo that we were not going swimming and mummy did not need to borrow his armbands.
When the NHS midwife arrived a few hours later I got into the pool, trying to ignore the basket of ironing in the corner of the room and the bath toys that my kids had kindly put into the water for me.
My husband connected the hosepipe to fill the pool and tried to persuade five-year-old Theo that we were not going swimming
A seasoned veteran of childbirth my husband put his headphones on and got on with some work on the computer in the corner of the room.
There was no playlist this time as we didn’t want to wake up the kids. At one point our family cat wandered into the room to see what was going on.
While Meghan will have a medical team on standby and essentially a hospital set-up at home, for the average mum home births are very basic. We just had a fully charged mobile phone in the room to call 999 in case things went wrong.
There is no doubt though that the best aspect of a home birth was to be able to fall into my own bed at the end of a long and exhausting labour with my new baby and nothing will beat witnessing my children’s excitement as they came into the bedroom the next morning to meet their new brother.
This idyllic scene of new motherhood was soon shattered however by the expletives of my perfect baby’s father as he struggled to empty the birth pool and dismantle it in the next room…. I bet Harry won’t have to do that!
In other royal news, Prince Harry will be working alongside Oprah Winfrey in a new mental health documentary set to hit screens in 2020.
Plus, a royal expert revealed that Meghan Markle's baby 'will become dual citizen and be liable to pay US taxes’ after they are born.
And we recently revealed another of Meghan's pals, Serena Williams, may have given away the sex of the Royal baby.
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