My first child, Emma, was born in the hospital -- long labor, posterior presentation, stadol, internal fetal monitor, tearing... etc. The staff and doctors were great but I knew the second time around that I wanted to do it differently.
I found out we were pregnant with our second child two years later and had a wonderful pregnancy. Lots of Braxton Hicks contractions toward the end of my pregnancy and even some false labor... but finally the morning of May 21st, the Braxton Hicks' felt different. We had planned a home birth with a certified nurse midwife and my husband and two close friends. Our oldest daughter was going to spend the time with my mother (it was to be the longest time ever away from me -- and also our first night apart) We had read a lot about laboring in the water and had borrowed a small hot tub from my parents that we set up on our deck in the back yard. So, at 1:30 am when the contractions started, I was very ready to go.
I tried to sleep, but of course couldn't, so I made some hot tea and listened to mellow music. I woke my husband Lee up at about 6 a.m. and told him that I thought this was real (the previous morning I had said the same thing -- and it stopped completely after six hours). My mom came to get my daughter around 8 am and the contractions seemed to come to a halt -- unless I walked. So that is what we did. My husband and I and our friend, Wendy spent most of the day walking. We have a great two mile walk from our house to the Yellowstone River and we did that a lot. If I stopped for too long, the labor would stop too.