Saturday, July 16, 2011

Birth Plan: A Rough Outline

I worked through the dreaded birth plan worksheet.  It seems silly to plan a birth when it is so uncontrollable, but I do have a way I would like things to work if all is well so fill out the sheet I must.  Now I'm asking for help and feedback before I modify and present it to my doctor who will glance over it, stick it in my file, and fail to understand how difficult it was for me to fill out.

Important needs and concerns I have for my birth experience: I am really struggling with this one. I have a line and a bit more to explain that my first baby died and I need consideration and understanding this go round.  J's suggestion is to write 'see attachment' and then write a short paragraph on a separate piece of paper.  


During labor I would like: Quiet, dim lighting, to wear my own clothes, to be encouraged to move, try different positions, use the water (must remember to ask if I can be in the water if my membranes have ruptured).


For pain management I prefer: Please don't ask if I would like an epidural or other pain management. 


During pushing and the birth I would like: To follow my body's urge to push.  My husband would like to catch the baby.


If medical procedures (such as inducing labor, IV's) are suggested, it would be helpful if: Please fully explain procedure and why it is necessary. 


In the event a cesarean birth is recommended, it would be helpful if: My husband and midwife can attend although only one support person is typically allowed. 


We would like to welcome our baby by: Immediate skin to skin contact.  Would like to delay cutting of the cord and begin breast feeding as soon as possible. 


After the birth I would like: Quiet, no visitors, may want to use own swaddling blankets, husband may want to give first bath. We decline the erythromycin eye ointment - undecided on Vitamin K. 


Three very good things about this hospital (according to their website):

Food is allowed and provided during labor 
Pushing while lying on one's back is not recommended or encouraged 
IV's are not routinely used


I am probably over thinking this.  I'm inclined to do so when worried.  Before too long the frantic what should I pack?! posts will begin.

11 comments:

  1. For one...the three last things listed on their website are AWESOME!!! I don't think most hospitals are like that at all! Good picking!

    Second, about wearing your own clothing...I think that is better for you to do that to feel more comfortable. I wanted to wear my bra when I labored with Malachi (didn't like feeling floppy and hanging out of the slits in their gowns!) and they commented that I could if I wanted but if they ran into an emergency (c-section, etc), they'd have to cut it off since I had an IV in from the induction. Just something I would have never thought about. FYI :)

    I think J's idea of the attatched paragraph is best. You might also want to verbally mention this or have another copy printed to hand to your nurses, etc when you actually get to the hospital. I filled my out to bring to my hospital and they never asked to see it, so I wonder how they'd be able to view it before helping you.

    You also might want to plead the case a bit about having your midwife with you at a c-section if you think they might be strict about that...why she is so important to Bennett's birth and your mental well-being. You won't have time to do this in an emergency situation.

    I can't remember, are you a list maker? I sooo am, and I remember having a notebook with only baby lists in it including a hospital bag list. I'm sure I'd made it by 31 weeks...hadn't packed yet though. Lists made me happy and sane, especially with the unpredictibility of babies and my health problems at the end.

    Just thoughts...you can tell me to shut up or if I'm stupid! :) Love ya, momma!

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  2. I think your plan is great. Not too detailed, but highlights the important points.

    I'm happy to see they've changed some of their policies since last time I had a baby there... sixteen years plus one week ago.

    In the unlikely event of a c-section, having your midwife there would be great. So I think this is an especially good request to have on your birth plan. It made a lot of difference to me to have my midwife hold my hand through it and talking to me and telling me everything was going fine.

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  3. You are doing better than me. Aside from having no idea whether to choose natural or c/s birth, all I can think of writing is "one that breathes please."

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  4. @Amy: I thought about the clothing/c-section issue, but figured if it came to that they can just cut off what I am wearing. Another reason why I'm glad I found cotton gowns for $12. I wore yoga pants and a t-shirt while laboring with Charlotte (when I was out of the tub) and was perfectly comfortable.

    My plan is to give one copy of birth plan to the doctor, one to my midwife, and bring one with me to hand to the nurses when we arrive at the hospital.

    I am a list maker! I think I will start making my list for things to pack today. Having a list always makes me feel better.

    @Hobbit Mom: I hope they have changed their policies, that they don't say these things on their website and then follow a different protocol.

    @Merry: Yes, that's where I was for months.

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  5. I'd be afraid they wouldn't see the paragraph - and that's some pretty important information!

    Maybe retype the entire document to give yourself the space you need.

    I think you did well with being succint, but easy to understand.

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  6. As this is your plan, it looks great! And I too think what they list on their website is awesome! Too bad it's not the norm at ALL hospitals.

    I think one thing we added to our birth plan with Acacia for a possible c-section was that (if possible), baby be placed on Dad's chest skin-to-skin ASAP. And we talked before hand that my husband would go with the baby and my midwife would stay with me - that way we wouldn't have any last second confusion as to who should stay with me and should go with the baby (again, in the event of a c-section).

    I know you're thinking this through and I'm so hopeful that you'll have a wonderful birth experience!

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  7. Oh yeah - another thought I had was related to the question about if medical procedures are suggested - along with fully explaining them, you can say that you will want time to make a decision (unless, of course, we're talking about an emergency).

    I remember from the Birthing From Within class we did during Acacia's pregnancy, our instructor talked about this... asking why something is being suggested; is it "necessary", what are the risks - pros/cons, and what happens if you do nothing but wait and see... sometimes a little time in labor is all one needs for the situation to change without interventions.

    I get all excited and worked up about birth plans, so pardon my extra comment! :)

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  8. I think this sounds like a great plan. My only fear is (and this is my hang up, because of how I lost Hope) is labouring in water in case of ruptured membranes. I spent so long in the bath after mine had ruptured (but the difference here was, I didn't know they had) and Hope died of a late onset, severe infection.
    I truly hope that you not only get a healthy, happy, living baby but that you also get the birth you want. I know you know that in the end, it doesn't really matter, but I certainly think it does help. I still have some regrets about Angus' birth, but mostly I'm still just so relieved he made it.
    Thinking of you, Angela.
    xo

    ReplyDelete
  9. One of the founder's of my support group wrote a letter explaining the loss of the their first daughter to post on the door of their labour room when they went in to deliver their second. They also left a copy at the nurses station so that they wouldn't have to explain themselves repeatedly. You might want to use your "attachment" to do this.

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  10. @Amy: I thought about the clothing/c-section issue, but figured if it came to that they can just cut off what I am wearing. Another reason why I'm glad I found cotton gowns for $12. I wore yoga pants and a t-shirt while laboring with Charlotte (when I was out of the tub) and was perfectly comfortable.

    My plan is to give one copy of birth plan to the doctor, one to my midwife, and bring one with me to hand to the nurses when we arrive at the hospital.

    I am a list maker! I think I will start making my list for things to pack today. Having a list always makes me feel better.

    @Hobbit Mom: I hope they have changed their policies, that they don't say these things on their website and then follow a different protocol.

    @Merry: Yes, that's where I was for months.

    ReplyDelete
  11. As this is your plan, it looks great! And I too think what they list on their website is awesome! Too bad it's not the norm at ALL hospitals.

    I think one thing we added to our birth plan with Acacia for a possible c-section was that (if possible), baby be placed on Dad's chest skin-to-skin ASAP. And we talked before hand that my husband would go with the baby and my midwife would stay with me - that way we wouldn't have any last second confusion as to who should stay with me and should go with the baby (again, in the event of a c-section).

    I know you're thinking this through and I'm so hopeful that you'll have a wonderful birth experience!

    ReplyDelete

thank you!

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