Brisbane mum Jacquelyn Knight stared into her husband’s eyes and drew on his strength as she peacefully pushed her first baby out into his arms on the floor of their house without the help of any trained medical professional watched on by three cats, two parrots and a chicken.
“It was the most amazing feeling I could possibly have. Knowing I did the best possible thing I could for him,” the 34-year-old mum said describing free birthing her son, Jadyn.
Free birthing is an intentionally planned birth at home with no registered midwife or doctor. There may be other people there, but they are not registered birth workers.
Jacquelyn said there was no doubt the idea of birthing her first baby without any professional support was scary, but she was confident she could do it.
“I was petrified, especially with all the horror stories, but the hypnobirthing and my determination to have the birth I wanted helped,” she said.
Jacquelyn said before becoming pregnant she had been afraid of giving birth and had grown up hearing horror stories from her mum and her sister. It was this fear that led her to want to take charge of her birth and have a happy and positive experience away from any medical intervention.
“My mum kept talking about how horrendous the hospital was and they pulled my sister out with salad tongues and she ended up with a fear of birthing. My sister said, ‘Oh my God I feel bad for you’ when I told her I was pregnant,” she said.
Jacquelyn investigated having a midwife present but after interviewing a couple felt they would not support her wishes for a home birth if the baby was breech and she was not prepared to consider going to hospital unless it was absolutely necessary.