Choosing a homebirth or going to a hospital off base in Okinwa, Japan can be an exiciting journey. The more I search, the more I am finding how this culture understands and practices birth. Unlike our "western medicine" Japanese society views on pregnancy and birth differ.
Practices may vary from hospital to hospital, but generally the Japanese function around natural birth. Non-medicated births and breastfeeding are considered the "norm".
"Women in Japan culturally avoid having a lot of medical intervention. It is traditional to believe that during the time that the baby is in the tummy, we should avoid medication".
So if you decide to have a baby other than on base here in Okinawa, getting familiar with some of the customs can be beneficial. As with any place you go, being able to discuss your beliefs, wishes, and hopes for your birth is important as well as finding a provider who will be supportive of your desires.
*The homebirth midwife, Nakanishisan, I was referring families too has retired. Currently there is no one I am aware of who is attending home birth for American families. I will update as information is found.