For those of you who haven’t given birth, birth plans are these instructional sheets you give your hospital team to let them know what kind of delivery you want. I didn’t have one written out, because I tried to remain in denial about labor while I was pregnant, which totally worked for me.
Nancy O’Dell guest stars on this one, because Momversation has guest stars now. Weird, right? I know! Today Momversation, tomorrow America’s Next Top Model. You guys should come over, we’ll practice our walks.
10 thoughts on “Momversation: Birth Plans”
Being of the all crazed anal type-a sort, OH YEAH, I had a birth plan.
Declan had other ideas.
I must say, i love you so much! Haha. Reading your birth story via your link has chilled me out SO much. I’m pregnant & I am definitely getting an epidural but i’ve been petrified of actually getting it, among other fears. That post definitely made me feel better (and laugh!) So, thank you 🙂
That 52 page birth planner is to provoke thought for the mom, not to provide a manual for the hospital staff. My son turned breach by the time he was due and I had a section (and healed up in no time.) Good thing I didn’t waste my time on a plan.
I know it’s all cool and everything to diss the effort to be perfect. So it should be. I know you know that it is possible to give birth without drugs if that’s what you want to do. Doctors will listen to you as long as your ideas won’t cause anyone’s death. And that if you don’t want to do it without drugs, no issue. I will still buy you a drink. As long as it isn’t a froofy purple one.
Good topic, as usual. But, I thought Nancy O’Dell might be normal-ish, but she wasn’t. Please don’t invite her back.
I was told (erroneously, it turned out) by a doctor long ago that I had a bicournate (heart-shaped) uterus, and that it would be difficult for me to carry a baby to term. I had this impression all through my pregnancy, and felt that having a birth plan would have brought my hopes up too much, and whatever happened was going to happen anyway. It turned out that my son was 11 days late, I had to be induced, was in labor for 48 hours, and a C-section at the end of all that. Oh–by the way, my doctor said, your uterus is just fine. But the cord was wrapped around his neck. Nothing was as it was supposed to be, not according to either best or worst case scenarios. My kid is wonderfully healthy, I had a fairly difficult recovery, and I wonder what a birth plan would have done for me. As an over-thinker, could it just be a tool to fuel my obsessive tendencies?
I had a birth plan for my second delivery. My first child was born via scheduled c-secton (she was breech and my bp was going up) and I was aiming for a vaginal birth that second time. The plan was not even one whole sheet of paper, and more of a ‘wish list based on the best case scenario’ with a little ‘if a c-section is necessary’ list of things I wished were different about my first c-section (catheter AFTER the spinal block anyone?).
One of the doctors in the practice (not my usual guy) chuckled at my plan and said the nurses at the hospital would ignore it. The nurses? Every single one, at every shift change asked if I had one and took the time to read it, not to mention followed it wherever possible.
Maybe my wishes were just low maintenance enough that it wasn’t an issue – I’ll never know. But the unmedicated vbac was the best delivery out of the three I’ve gone through (my last was an emergency csection after labor).
I too think the sheaf of papers Nancy O’Dell downloaded was meant to be a starting point for writing her own plan.
My birth plan, just like my birthing classes, functioned as a tool to help me thoughtfully envision my labor and birthing process. A birth plan also serves as a fantastic guide for the woman’s labor support, so they can better allow the laboring woman to keep her focus inward and focused on managing contractions and rest, and ultimately. birthing her baby.
I don’t agree that a birth plan is ‘obsessive’ or ‘type-a’. And not all ‘birth plans’ consist of a five page computer print-out. It can be as short or long, as detailed or vague as the woman sees fit.
My amazing birthing class instructor, Natashia Fuksman (http://www.withwomannyc.com/live/), shared with us this outline for writing a ‘Birth Vision’
“Creating a Birth Vision is about taking time to distinguish what your own hopes and desires, as well as fears and unknowns are in terms of your upcoming labor and birth journey. When writing your Birth Vision, you may want to think about it as a letter to yourself and those you have asked to be with you during this special time. Writing a birth vision can be a clarifying process for yourself. Sharing it with your birthing companions can be very helpful for them, as they work on
supporting you in the best way possible way during this journey.
Here are some prompting questions/statements you can work with as you write your Birth Vision:”
What are my hopes and wishes for my upcoming labor and birth?
What are my fears or concerns regarding my upcoming labor and birth?
When I envision laboring, I envisionâ€¦.
In the past when I have felt vulnerable or in need of support, receiving it in the form ofâ€¦..felt just right. and/or:
In the past when I have felt vulnerable or in need of support, I wished to receive it in the form ofâ€¦..
Some alternatives to doing what I listed above that might work well for me areâ€¦.
I realize what I am in control of during labor isâ€¦
I realize what I am not in control of during labor isâ€¦
Mostly, I just want to make sure Iâ€¦
Like Heather mentioned in the clip, a birth plan is a thought provoking tool. It is a beautiful way for a woman to begin to introduce herself to this amazing rite of passage…
Nancy O’Dell doesn’t fit in with the rest of the momversation group. But as long as the Target commercial features Prince, I’ll keep watching …
thanks for the link to your birth story, it’s awesome! (although i’m still terrified, but fractionally less so knowing others have been terrified as well)