Monday, April 30, 2012

The Birth Plan!

Many of my friends and family are becoming first time moms soon. I thought this would be a great time to talk about birth plans.

What is a birth plan? Well, it is a written or thought out agenda for how your birthing experience is going to play out at the hospital.  Most include what kind of pain management if any, who you want in the room, what kind of tools you will want to use (ex. birthing ball, warm tub, shower), who you want to catch the baby,  if you want your other half to cut the cord, and if you want to nurse right away just to name a few! Some think that having a birthing plan is just an extensive written paper with everything listed for your labor and delivery, but it is not. A birthing plan can be written out in your head where no one even knows about it. That was what i took to the hospital with my first!

 Let me tell you how my mental birth plan went! My agenda went out the window before I even reached the car to get to the hospital! No joke, nothing went as I had planned and all I could think about in all those hours in the hospital is how this birth was not going the way I had planned at all! My water broke at home. I was expelling clots that were the size of grapefruits (my husband took them to the hospital to show the doctor). When we called the doctor to see what we should do, my husband and mother-in-law were both talking at the same time with panic in their voices. The nurse requested to talk to me and they were still going in the background! "Tell them this and do they know that!" It was scary and crazy and it was already out of control.

The birthing process is unreliable and very unpredictable. You cannot plan this process. I realized, by the time that I got to my third delivery, that the more I let go of being in control the more I actually enjoyed the birthing process. I was more in control when I was not trying to be in control. I was able to decide what was going to happen in the moment instead of already having a plan and being disappointed if something wasn't going right. I decided when the time came if I wanted an epidural. I decided if I wanted a catheter or not. I was able to be relaxed, which helps your body to be able to dilate easier and faster. I was able to talk to my nurse as I went through labor. When I would ask her a question I was able to be relaxed, understand, and make a rational decision in regards to what was going to take place. I was more focused and alert which made me be able to read my own body.

In my opinion the more control you try to take or expect in labor, the more out of control the birthing process will be. Let nature take it's course and decide when the time comes to make those decisions. I can almost guarantee you will have a better experience!
Packing for the Hospital for Labor and Delivery, 10 things A laboring mom will need

I learned to pack 2 bags. One for labor and delivery and one for the rest of my hospital stay. I would have my husband bring the second one to the hospital after I was transferred to my maternity stay room.

1. Magazines, You may have some time on your hands before active labor and after your get meds!
2. Phone Charger, You don't want to end up with a dead battery when you want it most
3. Camera and Batteries, To take pictures to share
4. Food, They now will let a laboring mom eat food to keep up the energy. Bring light snacks for you to eat.
5. Robe, If you have to walk to halls you will want something to cover your cheeks besides a johnny!
6. Chapstick, Your lips will get dry.
7. Deodorant, I put it on a lot because I was sweating a lot!
8. Hard Candy, In case you get a dry mouth.
9. Something to focus on, I actually used the little light on the TV when I was having contractions!
10. Slippers or Slipper Socks, For when you have to get to and from bed!

Happy Laboring Ladies!