Birth Plan

Written by Elena @The Art of Making a Baby on. Posted in My Pregnancy, PREGNANCY

PLEASE READ: I can’t believe I have to make this disclosure but after a lot of initial unsolicited and close-minded (and some helpful and nice) input on the hospital bag post, I’d like to say this:

This is MY birth plan. I am NOT interested in what YOU think my birth is going to be like. Nor what YOU think my hospital will or will not allow, nor what YOU think I can or cannot do.
I did run this whole thing past my OB who delivers exclusively at the hospital I’ll be in and got an approval and signature on everything with a few maybes, with his cell phone number to call in case something isn’t working out.

That being said, you’re welcome to share your experience of YOUR birth and birth plans, as well as give advice based on FACTS pertaining to MY birth specifically, as long as you have read previous posts and know exactly where I stand (in other words, you aren’t a first time visitor who seems to think that they know anything about what I want or need).
I’m very interested in any hypnobabies/hypnobirth birth plans and how things worked out.
Before commenting, please read Childbirth training post, if you haven’t before. Thank you!

I am quite open to many things if need be, however this is my best case scenario of how I’d like things to go in case of a normal uncomplicated and not drawn out labor.
My awesome OB agreed pretty much with everything and as he was going through the points, he kept going “That’s how it normally is” to almost every point.

Obviously, this plan is going to have to be modified, if Alexis doesn’t show up by Thursday and I have to go in for an induction. A few things on here will go straight out the door in an induction situation.
{And obviously, this isn’t the format I used for the actual birth plan. This is just a breakdown. }

BIRTH PLAN

Note: since I’ll be doing hypnosis for relaxation, my husband will be the one communicating with the nurses most of the time.

  • Minimum personnel in the room. No interns or students in the delivery room.
    I’ll be doing hypnosis so I want it as quiet as possible. They can teach kids on someone else. {people relax, it is said as a joke. My own good friend and MIL are both nurses, recently out of training. I just won’t be able to concentrate on hypnosis with people in and out of the room}
  • No regular cervical checks. I don’t want to be informed of progress, either.
    I’m really digging the emotional stages of labor and see them over and over again in birth stories I read, so I would rather go by that since it’s more accurate than dilation. Funny story: my sister who gave birth in Russia 18 years ago told me about her experience. She basically had painless contractions that started at 8pm. At 12am (4 hours later), they suddenly picked up and she was screaming in pain. They checked her- 4cm. No way she can labor for hours like that she thought (there were no epidurals available). 30 minutes later- she was 10 cm and ready to push. My nephew came out with 4 pushes. Another great example of how emotional stages of labor are way more indicative of progress than dilation ( if you don’t know what I’m talking about, you can read it in Bradley Book)
  • No IV unless necessary (hep lock is fine).
    Truth be told I really don’t even want a hep lock. I don’t know how comfortable or uncomfortable I will be and I’d really like to avoid have a needle attached to my arm. Or being pumped full of fluids. But I realize I might not be able to not have either. I am, however, open to an IV, if for some reason, I am unable to hydrate properly and/or my labor is taking a long time. Fluids have its use- that’s for sure- just not as a routine thing in every labor. This was the first item that doc said we might have an issue with the nurses over.
  • No drugs whatsoever (including induction drugs, unless we agreed to them prior to ).
    I don’t want any painkillers, no Demerol or anything of that kind. I’d go for an epidural if I can’t handle the intensity of childbirth before going for other drugs.
  • No Cytotec if induction is necessary
    OB said they don’t ever use it anyways.
  • No amniotomy.
    Really needs no explanation. My doc agrees.
  • I’d like to be able to drink liquids, eat easily digested foods (fruit) during labor, if needed.
    Doc insists that I will not WANT to eat once I’m in active labor. Im not disagreeing but I’d like to decide for myself. I’m not planning on eating anything but easily digested foods, like fruit or juices, or maybe those bars I packed in early labor.
  • No continuous fetal monitoring. 20 minutes on , 20 minutes off is fine.
    This according to the doc is going to be a hard one. The funny part is I totally understand why they want to monitor, however I don’t want to be tethered down. I might be perfectly comfortable in bed and then sure bring it on. But based on everything I’ve read that’s usually not the case. So we are going to allow 20 on and off initially because I totally get why they want it and sort of play it by ear otherwise. If I am comfortable using hypnosis in bed or where the monitor can reach, I am not opposed to constant monitoring, but if it’s going to limit the type of relaxation techniques I can use, then it’s going to have to go. OB wasn’t happy about it, because he gets to track all his laboring patients on his iPhone ( how cool is that?), but he’s too sweet and caring to say no.
  • No epidural unless we specifically ask for it ourselves.
    This is sort of a no-brainer, but I just don’t want to be asked if I want an epidural until I request it myself.
  • No loud noises or push coaching.
    That only refers to initial pushing. Once the head is crowning, my OB will be directing my pushing to prevent tears. I don’t tend to need a lot of loud cheering on and we don’t want the atmosphere to be crazy loud, so none of that “PUSH! PUSH PUSH!” for me. On the other hand maybe I’ll be surprised and that’s exactly what will get me going.
  • I would prefer not to spend any time lying flat on my back, including during pushing stage.
    This one is non-negotiable! Half the hospital births I’ve seen they have women lying on their backs. 45 degree angle is fine, on my back- no!
  • I’d like to push in a sitting squat or whatever position I find comfortable.
    This one I’m really curious about what position I will find best to push it. No way to know until you get there :)
  • No episiotomy.
    Luckily doc agrees.
  • During the pushing stage, I would appreciate warm moist compresses and perineal massage to reduce risk of tearing.
    It’d be really cool if doc remembers to do that. Otherwise hopefully hubby will be in a gathered enough state to remind him.
  • No pulling on baby’s head. I would like to push her out myself.
  • Please delay cord clamping for at least 1-2 minutes. The cord clamping thing was initially “until it’s done pulsating”. After discussing it with the doctor he said that the longer you keep the cord unclamped and the more blood gets in (plus he brought up something to do with the baby being above mothers chest or something like that), the more bilirubin needs to be broken down. So it’s a fine balance between “yes you want the baby to take as much blood as possible to prevent anemia but at the same time you might run the risk of severe jaundice that’s a lot more dangerous”. To be honest I haven’t had time (or more like desire) to look up and see if what he’s saying is correct. He is a really caring doctor so I doubt he’d be saying something that it’s partially true. So we decided to let the cord pulsate for a few minutes and then clamp it. That way we get some extra blood into Alexis, but don’t run a big risk of jaundice.

BABY PLAN

  • We will provide blankets and will dry the baby ourselves {Actually, Andrew will as I’ll be “busy” with other things)
  • Please allow us time to get to know our baby and breastfeed (1-2 hours) before any newborn procedures.
  • All newborn procedures to be done in the room
  • Please no baths
  • Please keep low voices and be gentle
  • Please no eye ointment and no Hep B vaccine.
  • ABSOLUTELY NO formula, sugar water, water.
  • NO artificial nipples (pacifiers or bottles)
Hope this helps some of you who are in the process of writing a birth plan. I will have to change it if induction is necessary by Thursday. I don’t think I’ll post the updated plan since there’ll be far more important things to do. What I will do, however, is write a post on how it worked out for us. I assume, things won’t go exactly as we want, so concessions will have to be made, and it’ll be interesting to see how it all works out.

This article belongs to The Art of Making a Baby ! The original article can be found here: Birth Plan

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Comments (151)

  • Julie

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    Your birth plan sounds awesome – a great balance of prioritizing your desires and your baby’s health. It’s also short and to the point – labor and delivery is the wrong place to have a long-winded philosophical discussion with your OB, so it’s great that you got it out of the way early. :)

    Reply

  • Ashley

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    Very similar to my own birth plan. Unfortunately do to positioning my homebirth turned into a c/s at a hospital, but alas… Good luck to you! I went to 41w1d and was VERY done. I know how you feel.

    Reply

  • Tara

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    what a beautiful plan! All around! I LOVE IT! :)

    How come the no eye ointment? What do they do that for anyway? and what made you decide not to do it?

    Reply

  • Jenny

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    sounds like a good plan. Well thought out. I hope everything goes accordingly. Good Luck with everything in the next week! A plan is always good. Even if things have to be tweaked during the process. To have something to look to is important. Just out of curiousity are they not going to give the baby the eye ointment? I am just curious because at my hospital it is protocol no matter what and they will not make an exceptions…curious if your hospital has different protocol in regards to it?

    Reply

  • Salena

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    Your birth plan looks AWESOME! Love the baby plan as well! Good luck hon! fingers crossed you don’t need to be induced. If they do have to kick start labor. Instead of starting with drugs, ask that he just breaks your water and let your labor go from there. Much easier on mom and baby than straight up drugs, which leads to more drugs, and more monitoring and its just annoying.

    Reply

  • Jenn

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    it all sounds very reasonable but just one quick questions out of curiosity. Why no bath? Don’t blame you for not wanting interns in the room. Birth can be a very personal process and I wouldn’t want strangers in the room either :-). It’s awesome your OB is so open and willing to work with you on your requests.

    Reply

  • Alexandra

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    I’m a new visitor to your blog, so I’m sorry if this has been addressed before, I’m just curious why no bath? I’ve just never heard that before so I’m wondering.

    Your birth plan seems very reasonable! I hope you get most of what you desire!

    Reply

  • Katrina

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    Hi Elena,
    First, good luck with everything :) I just wanted to share my experience, since you have stated no amniotomy – I was post-dates at 40w12d in December, so was induced. I was most concerned about pitocin, because its use also necessitates continuous fetal monitoring and I thought, it would be harder to get by without epidural, Well, I had an amniotomy at 5pm and went from nothing to full blown active labour within a couple hours, and was holding my daughter 12 hours later. No pitocin, no epidural, no continuous monitoring, no mobility restrictions, and no iv (well, until after delivery and I haemorrhaged, but that’s a different issue!) So my point is, amniotomy worked well for me. YMMV.
    Can I just say one more thing? The use of continuous fetal monitoring should not be routine, but should really depend on whether it is clinically indicated for the fetus, not whether it is convenient or comfortable for the mother. I hope it’s not necessary for you though! Again, good luck with everything.

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Don’t forget this is what I’d like in a normal unmedicated not drawn out labor. No reason to break waters in that case.
      If it’s an induction situation, things are a but different.

      Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Oh and continuous monitoring, of course it’s not about my comfort, but in a normal labor it shouldn’t be routine. I’ll do it without a medical indication if it doesn’t hinder me, otherwise 20 min on/off.

      Reply

  • Kirsten H

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    I think your birth plan sounds wonderful. If you wouldn’t mind answering a few questions I have that would be great as I would like to keep everything in mind for our birth plan.

    1.) Is there a particular reason you say no baths? Will you wash Alexis personally at the hospital or wait until you return home?

    2.) If the Hospital staff refuses to comply with what you want, what in your opinion would be the best way to handle it?

    Thank you!

    Kirsten

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Ok in short, newborns aren’t dirty, vernix is actually a really useful antibacterial substance that shouldn’t be washed away but rubbed into their skin instead (unless there’s really a lot).
      If she’s really vernixy then some can be rubbed in and the rest gently wiped off.
      I know my husband is going to want to wash her rather than let someone else do it too.

      As far as handling hospital protocols, we are all reasonable people. There are only a few things on here that are non negotiable, the rest we’ll do what we have to. In labor hubby will be my advocate, so he’ll have to deal with whatever. For the baby, hospital protocol or not, you can refuse certain things. None of these things in the plan are life or death (except for formula, sugar water- I’m VERY set against it) so if we end up having to deviate from it, it’s no biggie!

      Reply

      • me

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        Generally they don’t bathe the baby until 12 hours old or longer. Newborns cannot regulate their own body temp before approx 12 hours. So if it all goes “perfectly” you might even be home by then. Therefore it might be a non issue.

        Reply

    • Katy

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      I took the hypnobirthing Marie mongan method class and had a hypo VBAC. I think I remember requesting no bath so the vernix wax and what not can soak back into their skin where it belongs. We eventually did give him a bath with some organic soap we brought with us. The use the hardcore chemical stuff if you don’t request something else.

      Reply

  • Julie

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    I love all of it! May it all come true for you :)

    Reply

  • Deanna

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    you do know that the antibiotic eye drops are often required by law right? You may want to contact your health department in FL to see if your state is one of the rare states that you can opt out. They can call Child protective services if you refuse (no lie…) so you may want to rethink that one or at least be a little more open to it.

    They also dont give an actual bath to the babies when they are born….its more like wet washcloth type thing to clean them up a little more than they did directly after birth. (you dont give actual baths to newborns until their stump falls off) ….if you want them to use a specific type of soap for her first “bath” I would suggest that you have that all in place before you actually give birth.

    Some tests they cant give in the room (the hearing test is one of them) so you can ask to go with her for the ones they simply cannot do in room.

    and what exactly are you going to have to change if you get induced other than the IV?

    Reply

    • Julie

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      The in-room tests are going to depend on the hospital – ours supported rooming in and there was NO test that had to be done in the nursery. In fact, babies never even have to go to the nursery unless there’s a medical reason (beyond a test) or the parents request it. At our hospital, the hearing testing person comes around with a computer cart and does the test right in our room while the baby sleeps. They bathed the baby in our room, they weighed the baby in our room, they did the PKU tests in our room – we even had a baby with jaundice, and he slept on a billi bed in our room, right next to me.

      All that to say – there’s no policy or practice that’s true at every hospital everywhere when it comes to these sorts of things.

      Reply

      • Lauren

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        My hospital also did the hearing test in our room. They only took my daughter out of the room twice- once to give her a bath (my husband went with her) and the other time was for some medical check I don’t remember the specifics of.

        Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      A few things will change. I’ll have to rethink my whole philosophy. I’ve stayed away from thinking about induction until the night before. Off the top of my head IV, monitoring and amniotomy will have to go.

      Didn’t know about state laws… Will play it by ear. Nothing is set in stone.

      Reply

      • Ima

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        Best wishes, best of luck! The hospital threatened to call CPS because we refused the eye drops–interestingly, the fighting with the hospital admins helped me get thru the pain of my natural labor! ; )

        Reply

    • Jennifer

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      This is my first time commenting here but I wanted to respond to Deanna

      My son was born in a California hospital in 2009. I stated that I did not want him to have the Hep B shot nor the eyedrops on my birth plan and he was given neither with no issues from the hospital. I believe she could sign a waiver stating it is against her religion.

      Here are the laws regarding newborns and procedures in Florida: http://www.vaclib.org/exempt/florida.htm

      He was also given the hearing test in the room with me and my husband present. Of course it was a hospital where your baby roomed with you. They don’t even have a “nursery” to take baby to which was exactly our style. The only time he was taken anywhere was when he had his screening/PKU test. He was out and back within 5-10 minutes and it was done on the second night.

      To Elena, keep in mind that certain things could happen to derail your birth plan. I too wanted to keep the cord attached until it stopped pulsing but I was bleeding out and my midwives had to cut it immediately so they could deal with me. I also did not want the constant monitoring but I ended up not having a choice due to hospital policy. They did give me a telemetry monitor so I could labour in the tub and walk around but it still was hellish (of course my whole labour was LOL). Anyway good luck, and no matter what if things don’t go as you planned try not to beat yourself up over it. It’s been two and a half years and sometimes I still feel badly over how things went. At the end of the day I have my beautiful baby boy and that’s all that matters.

      Reply

    • Katy

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      Wow Deanna, you sound…angry. I had pretty much this exact birth plan including refusing eye ointment and hep and also I was a VBAC. Our birth plan was followed to the letter and there w no issue with refusing the ointment- my OB said he refused it for his kids in fact! Obv she asked her dr if she could refuse it.

      Reply

  • Kat

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    Can I ask why you dont want her to have a bath?

    Reply

  • Verna Stephenson

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    I didn’t want any pacifiers given to my babies either. We did bring some though just in case we needed them and I was very glad. After latching well a couple of times, both of them tried to eat for an hour straight. They weren’t recieving a lot of food at that point and I’ve heard it can make you more engorged so we ended up giving both of them pacifiers in the hospital. We’ve never had any latching problems with either of them because of pacifiers or bottles.

    Reply

  • Jenny

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    I am only asking about the eye ointment because I know at some hospitals they will decide on the risk factors, etc. so not every baby has to get it. Mine doesn’t budge. Glad you have a great dr. that sounds like will back you up no matter what. That is important.

    Reply

  • Elizabeth

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    That sounds like a good plan! I have to ask why no eye ointment though? It prevents blindness.

    Reply

    • elizabeth

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      oh, and i also wanted no episiotomy, but without one, i would’ve needed a c-section. i kept pushing but his head was going back up instead of down. after she gave me a small one, he came out the next push.

      oh, and with a boy, while they get a circumcision, they give them sugar water. i was not told about this until after the fact, but we nursed successfully for 15.5 months!

      Reply

      • Cee

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        They are given sugar water because circumcision is a very painful procedure and the sugar water offers a small amount of comfort. Circumcision is also unnecessary and really should not be done unless there is a medical need or for religious reasons.

        Anyway, Elena your birth is going to be beautiful and peaceful. I cannot wait to see the pictures of you and Alexis together <3

        Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      It’s an antiquated procedure that was done to prevent blindness in case mother has syphilis. No need to do it unless you haven’t been tested.

      Reply

      • Kelly

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        Actually, erythromycin ointment is used to prevent conjunctivitis caused by chlamydia and gonorrhea. Most women are tested for these sexually transmitted infections during their pregnancies, but the tests are done relatively early in pregnancy. Therefore, women can acquire these infections after testing and before delivery. Pediatricians have no way of knowing if a newborn is at risk, and sometimes the mother is not aware that their partner has the infection from another relationship. As a public health measure, the erythromycin ointment has been very successful at preventing infection and blindness in children. Not judging your decision, but providing the rationale behind why the preventative measure is taken.

        Reply

        • Jennifer Thompson

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          I had my daughter born in a birthing center….med free. I had skin to skin, delayed cord cutting and a bath immediately afterward. My daughter wasn’t given any eye lube or vaccines (Vit K or Hep B). We went home 4 hours later. We haven’t had any problems. Hospitals treat every patient the same as if we are all with these STD’s, blood diseases and babies are suctioned out as if they ALL need it. They don’t. It should be done on a case by case situation.

          Reply

          • Amay

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            I had both of my children like this (and my younger I had a successful hypnobabies birth), and I wouldn’t do it any other way.

            I think your birth plan sounds great, good luck, I hope your birth goes exactly how you’ve been envisioning it!

            Reply

          • Mia

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            Can I ask why no Vitamin K? That’s not a vaccine, it’s to aid with blood clotting for the first 3-6 montgs, when a baby’s clotting factors are inadequate. Breast-fed babies are particularly at risk for deficiency and thus bleeding complications. I’ve honestly never heard of anyone successfully refusing Vit K, so I’m curious as to your reasoning and the birth center’s response.

            Reply

          • Mia

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            Oops, Elena, I was actually asking Jennifer about the Vit K since she said she opted out of it!

            Reply

    • Katy

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      My understanding is that it protects against blindness caused by a mom that has an STD or some genetic condition. I don’t have either and refused the ointment no prob. My ob refused it for his kids too.

      Reply

  • Melissa

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    Your comments remind me why I didn’t bog my pregnancy. I got enough unsolicited “advice” and “oh you just wait..” comments without blogging, I never understood why people see a pregnant belly and feel the need to approach you and give “advice”.

    Good luck on your delivery. I hope you can go into labor on your own before Thursday!

    Reply

    • Heather @Cookies For Breakfast

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      Goodness gracious, is this ever true! I was having lunch with a friend and my baby, explaining how sometimes he doesn’t like taking a bottle of expressed milk and that I’ll probably have trouble weaning him from breastfeeding. A waitress pops out of the woodwork crowing about how I need to start giving him bottles more often to get him used to them. I know she was trying to help, but I didn’t ask for the opinion, nor am I that worried about weaning anyway! Leave preggos alone! :)

      Reply

  • Bubbles

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    sounds good.
    I think it is ridiculous the way they strap women to the bed with epidurals and then expect them to push out a baby. It is the most unnatural position to push in. Women are meant to have babies squatting or moving around. Lying on your back with an epidural is what slows labor down. I really feel I can speak to this too because I have done both ways. My first, I had an epidural the whole deal, I hated it. The second one I labored at home, walked into the hospital almost ready to push (although obviously not ideal, I had no idea I was at a 10 when I got there, I walked to much during labor it did not hurt as bad so I did not realize I was that far) I got there and pushed squatting for 2o minutes!!!! It was exhilariating!! My spelling sucks!!! I had no hep lock, no medicine, nothing. Felt great. Way way way better than my first.
    Curious though, why no vitamin K for eyes or no baths?

    Reply

  • Carolyn Kipper

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    I agree about the emotional thing. I had my 3rd baby 6 weeks ago and she practically flew out of me. Your body knows when it’s time to push/have the baby. I had my first contraction at 9am, she was born at 10:22 am. We barely made it to the hospital. Unfortunately, I didn’t prepare for a natural labor, so I was not calm or composed, lol… you can read my birth story here: http://thekippers.blogspot.com/2011/12/i-had-baby-birth-story-pics.html

    Good luck to you, I hope you get the birth experience that you are planning for, but if not, then just go with the flow! It will be amazing either way!

    Reply

  • Jessica

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    My birth plan was to get the baby out safely: coming from a Mom of three.

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  • Jamie

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    Pretty much exactly what I wanted. My nurses followed to a “T” and it went exactly how I had hoped. You are going to do great.

    Reply

  • Melissa

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    She said the birth plan had been approved by her doc. I’m sure if there was any issue with eye ointment HE would know and would have obected.

    Reply

  • Meg

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    I hope your birth goes well! At my hospital I didn’t even have to have a hep lock, which was awesome. I was able to move around wherever/however I wanted and the whole experience was great. Do your hospital rooms have showers or tubs? I spent a few hours in the tub and it was amazing, the warm water really helped with the contractions. I opted out of eye ointment as well, no one gave me a hard time and they definitely didn’t call social services on me!

    Reply

  • Leah

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    It sounds like you know what you want…I hope everything turns out the way you envision it. :-) I’ve only read your blog a couple of times, so please forgive me if you’ve covered this in another post, but…

    Is there a reason why you don’t want Cytotec if you need to be induced? Are you wanting to go straight to Pitocin if they need to induce you? It was my understanding that Cytotec just softens the cervix and can bring on labor on its own without needing Pitocin, which I would think would be more desirable. I had to be induced with my daughter due to pre-eclampsia and my midwife used Cytotec before starting Pitocin and it did it’s job wonderfully. I ended up not needing Pitocin at all because labor started on its own with just using the Cytotec. So I was just wondering what I’m missing since it seems the Cytotec would be less invasive if it worked for your induction. Again, I apologize if you covered this someplace else.

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Leah, you’re confusing Cytotec with Cervadil. Cervadil is prostaglandin inducer, Cytotec is a drug that isn’t really supposed to used for inductions, but sometimes doctors use it. And it can be very dangerous.

      Reply

      • Megan

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        Cytotec is a prostaglandin, too. (At least I’m fairly certain!). The two drugs work very similarly. Cervadil is prepared with a string attached to it and can be removed in case there is tachysystole (too many/too long) contractions and baby cannot tolerate it.

        Reply

      • 12107236999527136791

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        Cytotec really isn’t as evil as the natural birth community makes it out to be. Here is a pretty good even-handed discussion of the pros and cons: http://community.thebump.com/cs/ks/forums/thread/59822350.aspx

        And Leah may be right that she was induced with Cytotec, not Cervidil. One of the pros to Cytotec is that women induced with it are less likely to need oxytocin (Pitocin) augmentation, or a c-section. See, for example: http://journals.lww.com/greenjournal/Fulltext/2000/09000/Oral_Misoprostol_and_Intracervical_Dinoprostone.25.aspx (misoprostol = Cytotec, dinoprostone = Cervidil)

        I know it’s a non-issue for you since your hospital doesn’t use it, but I did want to clear that up in case other women are reading.

        Reply

  • Melissa

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    I like your birth plan. You shouldn’t have to worry about the episiotomy unless it’s an extreme reason – I have heard that at least in the US, they don’t do them unless absolutely necessary anymore. At least, that’s what my OB and my nurses told me. You also should have zero problem moving around however you are comfortable until you have/or if you don’t have any medication. The only time I couldn’t move around with my induction was right after they put the cervadil in (for 2 hours-so it doesn’t fall out). When I had my pain meds via shot in the hip, I could move around as long as I had someone helping me, just incase I fell. So you really shouldn’t have an issue there, even with an induction. Of course I don’t know your birth center’s policies. Glad your OB doesn’t use Cytotec. Mine didn’t either, but a friend of mine had a baby a few months after me at a Boston hospital and they gave her Cytotec. I was shocked.

    I would be really interested to know afterwards if they let you do some of the things that I don’t think I could have done at my birth center. (Specifically the monitoring, and the first few items on your baby list – I’m genuinely curious if they will allow it). They’ll ask you on check in about formula and pacifiers so that shouldn’t be an issue at all for you. Will you post a “plan vs reality” post afterwards?

    Reply

  • Heather

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    Hi Elena,
    I’ve been casually reading your blog for a month or two now (more so in the past couple weeks), but wanted to respond about the comments you’ve been getting bombarded with as you’re gearing up for labour. It’s public knowledge that some people come here for what I would call the wrong reasons. I get that and I am pretty positive that you get it far more than I do. But as someone who sometimes agrees with what you’ve said while other times very much not .. I think it’s sick some of the comments you’ve been getting lately. Fully understanding that this is a public venue you’ve chosen to share your birth and life story on, but some people crossed the line from well-meaning individuals into being outright callous and attacking you as a person.
    I’m sorry that you’re dealing with that, especially right now. I hope you are able to unplug emotionally from what nastiness has been said in some of these comments. Just know that it’s honest to god not about you personally; some people get a seriously sick thrill out of the anonymity that the internet provides when they want to drag someone else down to build themselves up temporarily. Focus on you, and your kiddo that you’ll be meeting SO soon and – pardon my french – fuck the haters.

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Hi, Heather! Thanks for the support! And please don’t worry- the nasty opinionated people don’t bother me one bit. But the sweet nice and helpful readers, as well as all the people who get something useful out of my posts are what I write here for.
      And your french is lovely btw :)

      Reply

  • Jamie Tinaglia Lee

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    Elena I wish you well. I agree with your philosophies and will be praying for your birth to come around soon and naturally!

    Reply

  • Heather

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    Love this – thank you for sharing! This is nearly identical to my birth plan when I had my son in November – you have a few different considerations here that I wasn’t aware of, that I will definitely be “borrowing” for our next birth plan whenever we have our second baby. I ended up needing a c-section and nothing really went to plan, but it was nice knowing that the staff was doing whatever they could to help us stick to the plan – it was great peace of mind.

    Sorry for the backlash on your previous post. I liked your idea for having different bags for different phases – we weren’t nearly as organized, but we did bring stuff back and forth to the car in shifts. People told us that we brought way too much stuff to the hospital and that we would never use half of it, but you know what? We used most of it! Better to be prepared than wish you brought something with you. (and, our son didn’t poop that much in the hospital, so everyone who said babies poop like crazy in the early days – well, not all babies!)

    Pretty soon, you’ll have a snuggly baby in your arms, without a care in the world!

    Reply

  • 05129706047463471031

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    It all sounds great Elena :) Hopefully Miss Alexis makes her arrival soon so you can avoid an induction, but if it does come to that I can say I had two very positive induction experiences. The first one I was induced due to my Hyperemesis and GD and the second time, my water broke 4 weeks early and then nothing happened for 2 days…I started to show signs of having an infection so they decided it was best to be induced. They both went really well but obviously it’s better if it all happens naturally!

    The other pain medication does absolutely nothing, so I think you’re right to avoid it! I didn’t have an epidural for either birth but tried some of the other pain relief and it was useless :/

    They don’t give bath’s here in hospital unless you specifically ask. We gave Charlotte a bath at hospital on the last day before we left, just so the midwife could show us how to do it properly haha! William had his first bath at home so big sister could help out :)

    I’ve never heard of getting eye ointment…my babies were never given it. What’s it for?

    All the best with everything, it’s funny how excited I am to hear about someone I’ve never met’s baby arriving haha! I hope breastfeeding goes well for you, William has just finished up at 2 years and 5 months and I’m super proud of our effort and also a little sad that my boobs are just plain old boobs again, lol. It’s ok, they still look good =D

    Can’t wait to hear the news!!

    Reply

  • Kristin

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    I think that’s an awesome birth plan and similiar to one I will go with next time! That said, I had an induction and ended up with a csection. I strongly encourage you to research csections and come up with a birth plan for that too. I didn’t and I deeply regret it. I love this website about “natural” csections! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5RIcaK98Yg
    Make sure you state that you want mom/dad/baby to stay together if at all possible during the stitching up part of a csection. They took my husband and baby away and everyone else visiting held him before I ever even saw him! So mad/sad/disappointed by that… Good luck on the birth! Either way it happens, babies are awesome additions to your life!

    Reply

  • Brandy

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    I did hypnobabies! I used it successfully up until I was in actual labor. I tried listening to the early labor track so many times and did a zillion finger drops and just could not get as deep as I did during practice. It seemed to work best when I had my headphones on, outside noises really made it harder to focus cos there was so much going on. I did use the tracks after birth to feel like Id actually gotten sleep. During my labor the shower and tub were the best, after that sitting backwards on a chair and wide legged swaying were all comfy.
    I had a very similar birth plan( had to have hep lock though for a medical reason, not a fun thing to have) I had bowls of fruit in my house, coconut water(I put lemon in mine I didnt really like the taste) lara bars etc..didnt eat too much though, my husband did bring me this giant peach at ine point and it was the best peach Ive ever had!
    You should ask your ob to do a stretch and sweep before going in and getting a chemical induction, it put me into labor, pitocin is harsh stuff and does not resemble natural labor at all. If the stretch and sweep didnt work I was going to first have the gel on my cervix and then go home, my last resort was pitocin.
    Also try to labor at home for as long as you can, its just more comfortable and you dont have to worry about nurses coming and going and things beeping.
    My sisters hospital had a monitor that was wireless, she walked all over the place, even outside!

    Reply

  • Natalie Thomas

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    HA HA HA HA. You are in for a major reality check. Good luck with all your control agenda items. I’m sure it’ll go exactly as you are expecting it to go. You will love the epi. What a lifesaver.

    Reply

    • Lauren

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      Really? Is there really a need to be so nasty. There’s nothing wrong with being informed about the hospital birthing process and having preferences regarding all the ridiculous interventions they throw at you. But good for you for being so pro epidural. I decided to get one and it didnt do a damned thing.

      Reply

    • Becky

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      I have never commented before, but I can’t keep my mouth shut in this case! Natalie, there is no need to wish a sarcastic “good luck” and refer to Elena’s carefully thought out birth plan as “control agenda items.” It’s okay not to agree with everything you read, but it’s not okay to be rude. I mean, really… laughing at her birth plan in the comments section? Not okay. Please consider how your words will make people feel before typing (or speaking).

      Reply

    • Mike

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      Interesting….my wife’s birth plan was nearly identical to this one. With 9 children, we’ve never deviated…

      Reply

  • Ana

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    Your plan is pretty reasonable. Just keep in mind to be open to certain things including the No formula or sugar water. I wanted to exclusively breast feedvsince the begging, but my daughter was born with the sugar extremely low. Seeing your new born with an IV in her little hand is not nice, plus the multiples blood withdraws in her little feet because of this. After that I agreed to give her formula. After a few days, when my milk came, I switch again to 100% breast milk.

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  • Peony

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    Your birth plan sounds pretty similar to what I asked for. I know every woman is different, and I got several side eyes from both the doctor and some of my family/friends for what I wanted. We did hypnobabies, and I found it to be really helpful. However, my water broke, and they gave me a time limit and pitocin. The pitocin led to an epidural some 6 or so hours later. So a few things, like my wishes not to have an IV, medication, or intensive monitoring were out the window. They did end up letting me have intermittent monitoring and I could get out of bed, but i had to stay in the room. I really pushed for, and was allowed to shower and get into the bath even with the IV and medication (this was before the epidural). They just had to wrap my arm in a bag so it wouldn’t get wet. I asked for no one counting me down while pushing, and asked twice, both at the OB’s office and while pushing to the nurse, and they did it anyway. I just tried to tune them out and stopped pushing when I was done. Honesty pushing was the most invigorating part for me, I could feel my contractions still even with the epidural, and I felt productive and excited while I was pushing! I requested no episiotomy, and I did tear in several areas, and it was/is sore sometimes still, but I stand by that choice for no episiotomy. After my son was born, I had him on my chest immediately. He stayed with me for probably at least a half hour, with no eye drops until maybe at least two hours after birth so he could see me. After the half hour with me bonding, they took him to the nursing kiosk in the room for maybe 2-3 minutes to do some newborn tests and then gave him right back. He did not get a bath, and he was not messy or dirty in the least after he was wiped down. We had time to nurse, enjoy each other for a bit, see some of my family, and then they moved us up a floor to PP. We initially did not want him to have a pacifier, and he didn’t for the first night, but the second night he did take a pacifier so I could sleep for a few hours. He had the pacifier for several weeks/months? maybe, but never really loved it and became a thumb sucker as soon as he could find his thumb :) Since then he has refused a pacifier. He will be a year in a few days and we are still breastfeeding, very successfully! Our next birth I would love to try hypnobabies again, and again will try to see how long I can go without medications. Everyone tells you, great, have your birth plan, but be prepared to make changes, like they know something you don’t. I don’t think it is a bad thing to go in positive and prepared to push for what you want. No one is going to be an advocate for you except for you. People are going to try and push you to do things that are not right for you, and unless there is a serious medical concern, only you know what is best for you. Good luck mama!

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  • 08370918660894877829

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    I am really excited to hear about your experience doing the hypnosis, and I going to hope for you to go into labor before Thursday so you can do labor your way.

    Reply

  • Holly

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    It’s good that you and your husband are very clear on what you want and that you are willing to be flexible in case things don’t go as planned. The one thing I’m a little surprised you haven’t addressed specifically is the Vitamin K shot. We had our birth in a birth center and had decided to leave up in the air and see how the birth went. Due to a VERY fast labor and consequently a very bruised baby we decided to go a head with it. Since you mention a family history of fast labor I thought it may be something you might want to look into and have a decision on before going into labor.

    I wish you the best of luck! And I hope you go into labor soon!

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      I didn’t address it because after doing some research I don’t mind it. The risk of doing it and not doing it are about the same, and I would rather have it administered.

      Reply

  • Ellen

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    I would rethink your no formula request. If you have a large baby, as I did, they can have problems with blood sugar and too much weight loss. I allowed formula as long as I was asked first and baby was cup fed, not bottle fed.

    Reply

    • Megan

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      Momma of 2 big babies here- 9#1oz and 9#11oz. NO NEED TO ROUTINELY SUPPLEMENT just bc you have a big baby. Nurse her, nurse her, nurse her. Your milk WILL come in and she WILL gain weight. Your colustrum is plenty for your baby in the first few days. Even a “big” babies stomach is still just a few tablespoons!

      Reply

      • Erin

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        My baby was over 9lbs too and I had no need to supplement. They do test sugars on big babies and if low they will try and make you supplement. IF that happens, ask if they have a breast milk bank. My hospital did and we could have used donor breast milk instead of formula if her sugars had been low.

        Reply

      • Alexandra

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        I’m sure that if her baby has a medical reason for needing formula then she will be open to discussing it, but until that happens, I think specifying that is absolutely the way to go. I didn’t, but they knew I was BFing and I found out after the fact that he was given formula without anyone discussing it with me. And my head nurse actually told me he DID NOT need it, so the nurse that gave it to him was in the wrong (he didn’t have sugar issues, he just didn’t latch well at first). Next time, I will be putting a sign on his bassinet that says NO Formula unless I’m asked. At my hospital he roomed in, but had to go to the nursery for a few tests. DH wasn’t allowed in the nursery, so he didn’t go. Next time, he will be standing outside watching even if he can’t go in.

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  • Lara

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    Many of these things are things I was going to request with my fist pregnancy (unfortunately we lost him halfway through and now I will always need a c-section) so much of it I agree with – especially the no IV and no continuous monitoring. I wanted to be able to move around in labor. And they had no rules about eating or drinking! I had been seeing midwives who deliver at a hospital (their practice is actually mixed in with the regular OB practice, so an OB is always right there should you need one and you have access to absolutely everything a “normal” delivery does). It sounds like it would have been a great option for you! I know you wanted an OB, but it might be something to check into next time if there is one!

    My one thing I wanted to point out is that the doctor is quoting an old wive’s tale that has been proven wrong regarding the cord clamping. The placenta does NOT have to remain above the baby, the blood will NOT flow back from the baby to the placenta. Waiting until it’s done pulsating is by far the best thing and something that was really important to me as well.

    http://www.homebirth.net.au/2010/12/cord-clamping.html

    http://midwifethinking.com/2011/02/10/cord-blood-collection-confessions-of-a-vampire-midwife/ <–watch this video!!!B

    Reply

    • 12107236999527136791

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      Yeah, I wanted to point that out as well. It’s not a “big” risk of jaundice at all. In fact, it’s a very very small risk of jaundice. The risk of anemia from *early* cord clamping is significantly higher.
      http://academicobgyn.com/2009/12/03/delayed-cord-clamping-should-be-standard-practice-in-obstetrics/

      And I also agree on considering midwives. I actually disagree with this statement of yours: “OB wasn’t happy about [intermittent monitoring], because he gets to track all his laboring patients on his iPhone ( how cool is that?), but he’s too sweet and caring to say no.”
      I don’t think it’s cool at all for OBs to track laboring patients on their iPhones. I much prefer for my midwife to track me by being in the same room as me the entire time, so that she can see my face, hear my voice, watch my body language. I can guarantee that the iPhone app doesn’t provide that.

      Reply

  • Mandi Richards

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    I had my daughter in a birth center, so my birth plan was very short (literally like 4 items long) since many of these things weren’t even an option, but mine would have looked almost identical to yours. I didn’t want to eat during labor, but my midwife pushed me to eat a little here and there, and I’m glad she did because I’m sure I really needed the energy.

    I hope your birth goes exactly as planned, but I’m sure it will be a beautiful experience either way! I look forward to hearing about it (and your beautiful baby) afterward.

    Reply

  • Bee

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    My plan is pretty much the exact same as yours! I do like your plans for drying the baby yourself, I hadn’t gotten that far yet. We’re planning our birth at a birthing center that is literally next door to a big hospital with a NICU. The birthing center has a great relationship with the hospital so if we have to transfer for any reason, there shouldn’t be any attitude problems. But we’re a lot further off than you! Our baby’s due in August. :)

    I’m sorry you had unhelpful advice. I’ve always enjoyed your posts and really appreciate your openness about planning for pregnancy and all things pregnancy. I know you thought about not including your weight gain on your updates, but I appreciate that you did. I did a LOT of learning before we started TTC, and I learned as much from your blog posts (and the awesome info you share!) as I did from anything else. So THANK YOU for sharing.

    I’ve got my fingers crossed for you & the family and am excited for your little one to arrive. All the best!
    ~Bee

    Reply

  • friendlyfriend

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    Nice job! Sounds great. I did Hypnobabies and it was awesome, I highly recommend it. I was induced because labor wasn’t starting on its own at 42 weeks, so like you a lot of things in my birth plan immediately went out the window, like “No IV” – but it was all good. That’s the best part about the self-hypnosis, that no matter what direction things go in you remain relatively calm and confident, because you know how to relax yourself. I did end up getting an epidural but it truly felt like my choice and a choice I feel ok with, because I know I did my best, and YOU CAN DO IT, too!

    Also, if for some reason the staff is ignoring your desire to have the baby NAKED on your chest as soon as possible for skin to skin (which happened to me, they had to check her right away because she was in distress, so I was fine with that, but then once they were sure she was fine they started to swaddle her, which was unnecessary), you CAN speak up and politely ask them to give her to you, as soon as it’s safe to. That skin to skin, UNswaddled contact helps so much with establishing breastfeeding. It’s really magical. They may forget because they are used to doing things a certain way, but even though you are a first-timer, you have the right to ask for things to be done your way (as long as it’s safe, obviously) – she is your baby! Best wishes!

    Reply

  • Lindsey

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    I think this that your birth plan is very reasonable. Whether or not things go according to plan isn’t the point, it’s YOUR birth, YOUR baby. Our birth plan was very very similar to this and although not everything went according to plan it felt good to have a plan to fall back on and to remember when things got really crazy what it was that we wanted. For me the not being checked for dilation was huge, I was examined once when I arrived and then not again. This allowed me to progress with how my body was feeling rather then thinking I should be feeling one way or another b/c of a number. My midwife knew exactly when I was transitioning and I knew exactly when I was ready to start pushing.
    Good luck, and remember, your body knows what to do, trust in it and you’ll do great.

    Reply

  • Melinda

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    Your birth plan is great!! I’m a little jealous that you’ll have the option to eat while in labor. I was in labor for 42 hours so I had literally no sleep and then no food for well over 24 hours. They gave me apple juice which was not helpful in any way! And I also wish the midwife had done perineal massage. Our actual midwife probably would have done it but she wasn’t on call when I had my baby. Next time I’ll make sure I have a doctor/midwife who will definitely be there!

    As for people saying that eye goop is necessary by law, It is required by law that the hospital does it UNLESS the parents request that it not be done and they sign a form saying they know the risk and blah blah blah. We didn’t get it, no biggie. We didn’t get his hep shot at the hospital either. We did get it at his 4 month appointment though.

    Good luck!

    Reply

  • Alana

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    I’m always in awe of birth plans. I never made one with the exception that I told my doc that I wanted a vaginal birth as long as the baby wasn’t breech, if I ended up needing a c-section (either because of breech baby or emergency), so be it. I just wanted my baby out and in my arms.

    That said, I think (and this is just my opinion) that every birth experience is unique to the mother. You can read as many books, talk to as many women who have been through labor, take as many classes, do as much research as you want, but I don’t think anything really prepares you for actually being in labor. And I don’t mean that in a condescending way. I just mean that the emotions you experience and the physical pain (or lack thereof for some) is different for everyone.

    I ended up having to be induced do to low amniotic fluid at 38w 3d. It wasn’t bad, it was more annoying than anything because I was just kind of waiting around for what seemed like forever (but in reality more like 18 hours) for labor to kick in. But once it did, it all went well and I had my handsome little man.

    I wish you well with your birth plan and more importantly, with the birth of your little one. I hope it goes quickly with no complications. So soon you’ll be able to enjoy your little girl.

    Reply

  • 09294209820193944395

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    Excellent plan. You have some great points that I should be considering for myself as I am expecting and have only a partial plan thus far. Also thank you for producing such a great and informative blog. I love following your progress, it gives me ideas and motivation for my own pregnancy.

    Reply

  • Johanna

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    I think your birth plan sounds reasonable…as some of the other ladies mentioned you may want to be ready for anything and everything to happen. Allow for some flexibility. I do want to touch on something though that had me a little in tears. I have had 2 open-heart surgeries in my lifetime (28 years) and several minor surgeries too. Because of my heart condition I am on daily medication that can be passed through breastmilk, I was unable to breastfeed at all since I had to go back on my meds directly after birth (they pushed it having me off of them for 9 months). When you repeated say that you do not want ANY formula of ANY kind, WHATSOEVER…then it kind of makes me feel like crap…and it makes me feel like a bad mother. My daughter is 1 now, and she has been formula fed since birth. Nothing is wrong with her, she’s developing beautifully and she is a normal and happy child.

    I understand this is YOUR decision…believe me I do…but it hurts a little as another mother to see that someone is so against something that my daughter would have never been able to live without. Especially given the fact that I never would have been able to provide breastmilk without damaging my own health. Even with that information, my milk never really came in. So actually, my body never would have been able to provide it even if I had been able to try breastfeeding. It pains me, and It hurts to see so many blogs dedicated to the fact that breast is best and everything else sucks and is so horrible and terrible.

    Not bashing your decision at all, I just wanted you to know MY side of the story…as someone who wasn’t able to breastfeed…and I wanted you to know that formula isn’t bad…and although it is your last option according to everything you’ve ever written, I guess I just would like to see you acknowledge that it may be necessary and that other women/mothers may feel a little slighted that you think so little of it. I do hope that everything goes as smoothly as you plan and that you have a safe birth.

    Regards,
    Johanna

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Oh honey, I really don’t want to get into it right now, but people who couldn’t breastfeed should feel bad because other people decide to breastfeed exclusively. The reason for NO FORMULA WHATSOEVER ( in cap letters) is because formula changes the bacterial balance of the digestive system of the infant (cuz of cow’s milk), so if you’re planning on exclusively breastfeeding it’s best to keep that balance in tact, but no introducing any solids (cow’s milk is considered a solid). If you’re formula feeding, then it doesn’t matter since the digestive system will change no matter what- that’s all. Formula isn’t even and has its uses and children died before they came up with formula…. Don’t feel bad, please!

      Reply

  • masha

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    Hi
    love how you are so flexible with your plan which is the biggest hurtle for most moms. Gave Birth in Australia and they are very natural here. So I don’t get what eye drops are for? But you sound really prepared which is amazing. Hope the labor will be amazing and quick with a healthy baby. Wishing you guys all the best.

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  • Ashley

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    I think your birth plan sounds perfect. If you don’t mind I’d like to add some input based on my experience.
    First, I had an episiotomy. I was very against them, and so is my CNM. She said she had cut around 3 in the last 10 years. But after 2 hours of pushing, she said that she recommended it in my case, since I was not tearing naturally, and I could either push for several more hours (which was very undesirable for both me and my son, since a very prolonged pushing stage can be dangerous) or have an episiotomy. Since you obviously trust your OB, I’m sure you would take his advice into consideration, but I just wanted to say that sometimes an episiotomy is a justifiable non-routine intervention.
    Second, I fully agree that sugar water should NOT be a routine supplemental “feeding”. However, it is very helpful for the PKU, etc heel prick. They give the baby a sugar solution called sweet-eze that helps them better cope with the pain. Since you can’t breastfeed during the heel prick anyway, it won’t interfere with breast feeding. It also helps in the event that she needs an IV, which is obviously very unlikely.
    I really hope your birth goes perfectly as planned. Good luck!

    Reply

    • Lauren

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      I pushed for 6 hours before giving birth (we had my baby on the monitors and she never went into even slight distress) and they didn’t give me an episiotomy. Now I wouldn’t wish my birth experience on anyone (failed epidural, etc.) but I’d definitely do 6 hours again if it meant I cold avoid an episiotomy! Different strokes!

      Reply

  • Rachel

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    I think this is great plan and obviously very well thou.ght out and planned. I had my first baby in March and I went into it with a birth plan of: do whatever you have to so that the end result is a healthy baby and a healthy mom. My labor ended up being 24 hours of active contractions and 3 hours of pushing. The hospital where I delivered was awesome and did a lot of what you list in your birth plan. They let me walk the hallways for 45 minutes and then go on the monitors for 15-20 minutes without me even asking. I had back labor so walking was the best for me. I did have quite the audience for the delivery…..I remember looking up and counting 9 people but honestly by that point I was so focused on getting her out that I did not care! They put her on my stomach and my husband and I cleaned her off and bonded for over an hour before they weighed her. It was do nice for all of us. I hope you get the labor and delivery you want and that your daughter makes her debut soon! I would be interested in hearing/reading your reflections after on how things actually went vs. your birth plan

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  • Christine

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    Looks good to me. Very similar to mine. Unfortunately I had a doula and still ended up with a c-section. I hope very much that it doesn’t happen to you. Sounds like you are as prepared as you can be for whatever comes your way. I wanted to give you one piece of advice that my doula gave to me. Pack a goodie basket to go along with your birth plan. If you bribe the nurses they are extra nice to you and more apt to read your birth plan. They usually like healthy treats. I know it’s yet another thing to pack, but I think it was nice to have. I would suggest having a good basket for your labor nurses and another for the ones tending to you after you give birth. Those are usually a different group of nurses. Good luck!!!

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  • Yvette

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    This is in no way meant to sound rude, but since you seem to want little to no medical intervention, and for your husband to do a lot of what nurses do, why not just do a home birth?

    Reply

  • Katie B.

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    Good luck to you! I had a natural birth and it was amazing and I have to tell you, those that don’t have it don’t understand how wonderful it is. That is also true for people who don’t breastfeed. It is a wonderful and can be a very peaceful experience and you control it so don’t listen to those who are trying to say it won’t happen. You know your body, and keep repeating that to yourself. My midwife kept saying that my body knew what it was doing, and it did. Peace and love!

    Reply

  • Margie

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    Sounds like a good birth plan. Have you thought about doing a c-section birth plan too? I was planning an unmedicated vaginal delivery but ended up with a c-section due to a breech baby and HELLP. Towards the end I put together a c-section birth plan “just in case.” I’m glad I did because it informed of the possibilities before me, even if I was hoping they wouldn’t come to pass.

    I did cringe, however, at this statement: “They can teach kids on someone else.” I think it’s fine to not want any extra people in the room but the attitude of let them teach on someone else just comes off really condescending. Also, how old are you? Most medical residents are going to be in their late 20s. I doubt they’re not that far off in age from you.

    Reply

  • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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    Thanks for all the comments you guys! I really really really want to read through each one carefully and answer all the questions and all of you individually, but as you can imagine that’s impossible, especially right now.

    So just know I appreciate all the support and all the nice input and all your stories. And those of you with blogs, I’d really love to check out all your blogs and see who you are, which I’ll try to do when I’m not a few days from possible labor, so stick around, I’ll eventually make it over there.

    Also, I try to answer specific questions in comments, but sometimes they slip by me, so if it’s something that’s really important for you to know and I haven’t answered, ask again or shoot me an email at contact@prebabyblog.com

    And thank you for all the wishes!

    I’ll be back after birth :)

    Reply

  • Amanda

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    What an awesome birth plan! You seem to have thought everything through so well!
    I had a hypnobirth that went very well. I did it naturally and although I had a very long labor I handled it well. I have a suggestion of typing a sign that says “Quiet please we are a hypnobabies or hypnobirthing family”. We had one on our door and it reminded people to be quiet when initially entering the room. Best of luck to you!

    Reply

  • Mary R

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    There is no need for formula if you have a “big” baby. This is a very misguided response. Your body is made to feed your baby. A baby’s tummy is so tiny as a new born that they don’t NEED much to eat.

    I hope your birth is everything you want and that your little girl is on the way soon. Good luck!

    Reply

  • Maria

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    You’re birth plan sounds pretty good. It is nice to have knowledge and confidence, I know that was a huge comfort to me during labor. I hope all goes well and you have a great birth experience. Excited to hear how the hypno-birthing goes for you. I went natural last time but did not have a very good experience. Stay strong mama and ignore the ladies who are jealous and hateful!

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  • Nicole M.

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    I really hope things go smoothly for you. I had a hospital birth and even though I loved my OB’s (I was seeing a group practice) and they supported my decisions, when it came time for my actual birth many of my wishes went out the window. For one, I had an “on call” doctor who I had never met before deliver my daughter. Nobody was regulating who came in my room and I was VERY upset over that. And then even though I was SPECIFICALLY told my daughter would never leave my sight, they took her out of the room to bathe her (my husband went with but then I was left alone in the room with my in-laws…), and took her to the nursery twice to do checkups on her. I really hated my hospital birth and if I ever have another child, it will definitely be at home with a hospital transfer ONLY if there’s an emergency.
    Anyways, keep reminding your husband that he’s really got to be the one to keep things going the way you want them to because unfortunately, the hospital staff is probably going to give you a hard time. Good luck to all three of you! xx

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  • Heather @Critter Chronicles

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    Your birth plan looks great. :) I didn’t have one with either of my deliveries. With #1 I went into labor at 36 weeks and my only request was no episiotomy. With #2 I requested that, plus no Hep B vaccine (in Colorado was not a problem – just signed a waiver), and I wanted a mirror in the delivery room. I didn’t have one with #1 and after my (squeamish) husband said how cool it was to watch the birth I knew I wanted in on it. The mirror was great – I could see exactly how much progress I made and it helped motivate me. Both of my labors were short (12 hrs; 3.5 hrs) and easy. The contractions didn’t feel great (no pain meds with either one) but I had worse pain with a ear infection; I can imagine much worse pain than labor. I know how fortunate I was in that regard, though, as no two women have the same pain thresholds or labors. I only pushed a total of ten minutes for either one.

    I hope your labor and delivery go well for you and as much according to your wishes as possible! :)

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  • Laura

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    While the eye drops are required by law, you can refuse them. Then the nurses will inform you they will have to call Child Protective Services. I refused the eye drops because I am allergic to erythromycin and didn’t want them putting something I’m allergic to in my baby’s eyes moments after birth. I told the nurses they should go ahead and call then. My doula had warned me about all of this before my labor so I knew what to do. She told me that in the event a client of hers refuses the drops, CPS has NEVER followed up to her knowledge. Let’s hope they have better things to do, right?

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  • 12096180958861245388

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    Your plan sounds perfect. Wishing you all the best, but know everything will go as well as your entire pregnancy.

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  • Annabellie

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    Great birth plan! It looks very similar to mine.

    One thing that I learned after giving birth to my son last year is that it’s great to know what you want, but it’s also great to be flexible and realize that things don’t always go according to plan. I ended up having a c-section (baby flipped at the last minute and was footling breech), and the anaesthetic made me quite ill. Meanwhile, my son, who was small and early (I went into labor at 35 weeks) was having trouble regulating his blood sugar. I was too busy throwing up for them to be able to get my colostrum, and they ended up having to give him sugar water. Luckily, they were a very anti-formula hospital, so that never even came up.

    I’m happy to say that we’ve had a wonderful, easy breastfeeding relationship from day 1 (as soon as I stopped puking, obviously) :)

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  • Amanda

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    Love love your blog! Don’t let other’s negative comments get you down. It’s your baby, your instincts.

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  • Megan

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    I don’t know if you read/respond to all comments, but I read a birth story recently where the mother established a “safe word” with the nurses to indicate if she wanted an epi. This way, they never offered the epi, and even when she expressed out loud that she couldn’t do it/needed pain relief (near transition, I believe), they still never asked about it because she didn’t say the safe word. Perhaps that could be helpful to you. Best of luck!

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  • Christina

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    I had a very very similar birth plan to you- and I ended up with exactly what I wanted! No IV, no meds, sitting up to deliver, quiet environment, etc, etc. It was an awesome, empowering experience and I got up and walked to the bathroom right after- that wouldn’t happen with an epidural! My daughter was super super alert, great nurser from the start.
    The hospital was very medical in its orientation so I was really pleased that they did respect my wishes on most things. They wouldn’t budge on the bath and the eye stuff though :( both of which I regret doing since my poor daughter’s skin was so dry and cracked and the eye ointment dried the skin around her eyes. I think I had constant monitoring near the end- but you aren’t really paying attention at that point :)
    I’m a nurse, so I know how nurses can be, they will laugh when they see you coming with your birth plan and your own blankets. But who cares- get the birth YOU want! One of my nurses was REALLY pissed that I wouldn’t let her check my cervix. But oh well- too bad for her.
    Good for you for researching it all and making some very wise decisions.

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  • Tiffany

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    Eh, sounds a lot like my birth. Well, I was in a freestanding birth center, so no 20-min on/off monitoring. I did end up doing two cervical checks – the midwives asked if I wanted to, and after 24 hours of early (but not painless!) labor, I did. :) I think it’s fair to leave room for flexibility in the plan (I didn’t want drugs, for instance, but I bled A LOT, and they wanted to do an intramuscular shot – no IV or heplock – of pit to help the contractions after the birth – I agreed), but know what your preferences are and WHY going in, so you better understand when you really do need to deviate.

    I hope it all goes well for you and you find a birth as close to what you are looking for as you may.

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  • Jasmine

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    I totally agree with the bath thing! We did not fully bathe our newborns until they were about a week old – yes we wiped baby down at birth and cleaned them up a bit with blanket/towel, but beyond that, baby was put in diaper, dressed and swaddled – they are not dirty at all and yes, vernix is meant to be just rubbed in. They don’t smell, they do not look dirty, and after the umbilical stump has dried and fallen off, then bath time begins. I have commented before and mentioned that I live in Canada and our hospital policies just seem so different. I did have 3 hospital deliveries (2 midwife assisted) – never had a heplock put in “just in case”, was able to walk around (with my inductions I was just given the pole) and with my last baby – was induced but was still allowed to labour in the bath for a long time. I did have to have some moments of continuous monitoring (for like 1/2 hour just to establish how baby was coping) but after that she just did sporadic checking wherever I happened to be. We delayed cord clamping for up to 25 minutes, never had blood sugar levels tested (and all three were close to 9lb. babies) – we did the eye ointment but only after about an hour of bonding/nursing/skin on skin contact). I will agree that I never wanted to eat during actual labour even with the epidural/long first labour – never even occurred to me to ask but was not interested. I did eat before however and a ton afterwards lol!
    I like your birth plan and I hope they honour it as best as possible :) Good luck again!

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  • 03560703393091963679

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    Looks like a very well thought out and evidence based plan. Great job and best of luck! Can’t wait to read your birth story! :)

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  • Laurie

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    Great, very reasonable birth plan!

    I was a ‘wait and see’ person on an epi. I wasn’t one of those women who wanted one the second they got to the hospital whether in pain or not. I wanted to truly need it and ASK for if if I did in fact want one. We told the nurses this and can’t believe how many times I was asked if I wanted one by the staff! NO people, I want to see how it goes!

    At shift change, again the new nurse asked me and I again said, I want to wait and see and her answer..”oh, you’re the one”. WTF? Really was there that few people that want to NEED it before asking? So…GOOD for you! I have seen people put a sign outside their door saying something to that effect…with your hypnobirthing plan..if you have not thought about it, you may want to think about a sign for the door. Something to the effect of please don’t ask..we would like an unmedicafed birth..extreme relaxation progress….???

    Your sisters birth was like mine too. Intense pain..was checked…only a 3. Thought how can I do this? Very discouraged. Labored on, only to be at a 10 and the baby born within 2 hours. :). My 2nd, we changed the bed position to more upright just prior to pushing and that immediately changed the intensity of the contractions! The nurse said, that was all it took to progress to the pushing stage. (I have to admit, I was crying to move it back, the pressure was so great). She assured me it was a good thing!

    Good luck!

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  • irina

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    Best of luck in your labor – I hope for the safe labor and delivery w/o being induced, but if you have to be induced, please do not worry, you can do it and you may even be able to do it without the epidural (depending on your pain tolerance)! In my experience the hospital staff are actually very open minded – I was asked several times what my birth plan was (at each shift change, and I labored through 3 before I had to have an emergency C-section) and if I had one they would have followed it, but I did not bother to bring a plan since I was being induced. You are so right – everyone is very reasonable in L&D, I suppose they have to be :)

    Do not take any of the negative comments to heart – you have a unique perspective, but you know what you want and in the end whatever is making you most comfortable is the best! Not to be excessively personal since I am a total stranger, but I am sending you a virtual hug – you will get through this waiting period and a week from now it will all seem very far away and insignificant :)

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  • hatrick316

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    I’m curious for your reasoning on parts of your Baby Plan section. I don’t mean to argue or discredit your decisions. There are several listed that make me wonder the purpose (i.e., what you’re trying to encourage/avoid).

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  • Annie

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    Normally I find you ridiculous (I don’t mean that in a cruel way- You’re just over the top and that’s okay), but your birth plan sounds a lot like mine did with my now 2 year old daughter. It doesn’t mean that everything is going to go that way, but that’s what a birth plan is; how you would like things to go in a perfect world.

    I know you said you are completely against sugar water as I was too, but just in case you have any issues, rubbing a tiny bit of sugar water on my nipples actually helped my baby to latch while in the hospital. It would also work with a bit of pumped colostrum/breastmilk if baby girl were to have trouble latching.

    It’s great that your husband can be an advocate for you while your laboring. I hope everything goes well for you. Congratulations in advance!

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  • Allie

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    Have the births you’ve “seen” been all on TV? I’ve attended many births, in numerous hospitals, as both a medical professional and as a friend/family member. First of all, an IV is not a needle. Yes, they use a needle to place it, but it is immediately removed and you are left with a small, plastic, flexible catheter. It may be uncomfortable at times, but it is not a needle poking you constantly as you imply. And do you think they just go around begging patients to get an epidural? Unless someone appears VERY uncomfortable, I’ve never seen an epidural pushed, or even offered, to someone who hasn’t brought it up first. And lastly, I have never ever seen people push lying flat on their back, except on TV. Gravity just doesn’t work that way, and most practitioners are smart enough to know that.

    I truly hope that your birth goes as smoothly as you would like, but know that babies do their own thing, both during labor and after they are born. They are not going to go by some birth plan, and there may be situations that some of your ideas will have to be thrown out the window for the safety of your child. I have seen far too many emergent c-sections, fetal demises, and injured babies in supposedly low-risk births due to parental wishes for no interventions. While some of the stuff you would like to withhold really is pointless, I don’t see why people are so against modern technologies in hospitals that can prevent and prepare your medical team for any unforeseen emergencies.

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  • Michelle

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    I am currently 24 weeks pregnant and reading your blog has inspired me to investigate natural childbirth.

    Your birth plan is amazing and is a great resource for me as I start to write mine.

    Thanks so much for posting this and everything about your journey, and I wish you the best of luck!

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  • Jane

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    Seems all very reasonable, but the “low voices and be gentle” is kinda unessesary, the baby nurses know lots about babies and are going to be gentle with your little one!

    I had lots of residents at my birth, I actually liked it because they talk more about what’s going on and I found it interesting, but I can understand if you want to be doing hypnosis.

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  • Jess

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    I had almost the exact same birth plan minus hypnobirthing and bringing my own blankets for the baby. I was very lucky because my birth went exactly how I planned. I got the birth I wanted.

    That being said, I went in with an open mind, which I hope you do as well, knowing that whatever I needed to do to bring a healthy baby into the world was going to be what I did. No one can predict how their labor with go. Sometimes things don’t go as planned and if you have an open mind you’ll be less likely to be upset if it doesn’t go just how you hoped.

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  • Ellen

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    We did not “routine supplement”. Sometimes, baby’s blood sugar can take a dangerous dive. We did two supplements of about a tablespoon each, in the first 24 hours.

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  • Amanda

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    I love your birth plan! I have a very similar one in mind for use in a few months. I also plan to use Hypnobabies, so I’m really interested to read your birth story once you get a chance to type it all out! I had an induction with my first, and I have to say that being hooked up to the IV and fetal monitors (though necessary with an induction) totally sucked. I’m hoping my midwife will let me just get a hep lock and regular, but not continuous, monitoring.

    I’ve heard lots of moms delay cutting the cord until it turns white, but I haven’t done a lot of research on that myself. I heard it helps the baby to transition from getting mom’s oxygen to breathing on their own. I haven’t heard about the extra risk of jaundice, though, so that’s definitely something I’ll be looking up.

    Good luck with everything!

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  • 00285250263713795245

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    Thumbs up on your choice with the episiotomy! I am so glad I didn’t get one. I did have slight tearing, but my midwife used soluble stitches on it, and by one week, I was healed and no longer sore.

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  • 17356995994088171289

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    What an awesome birth plan! You have definitely done your research & it shows. I hope you get exactly the birth you want- you deserve it!

    Being a former nursing student, I can’t help but comment on not wanting interns/students in the room. I understand that you want a quiet, peaceful environment with minimal stimulation as to not interrupt hypnosis, but this would be the BEST birth for a student to see. All of the births I saw in nursing school were the typical “flat on your back, let me strap you with monitors, and when do you want your epidural?”. I think part of the reason people think that is the way birth is supposed to be is because that is all they are exposed to. It would be such a great experience for someone to witness your birth. As in intern I was allowed to do IV’s, cervical checks, deliver babies, etc, but as a student, it’s usually only an observational experience, so they would likely stand in a corner & not say anything. Just something to think about… teaching future generations about different birth experiences is such a great opportunity.

    Also, I have witnessed a few unmedicated, no IV births, and they were so so so beautiful. Having IV accress is the nurse’s preference because that’s typically how do things, and we nurses tend to think worst case scenario. BUT, it doesn’t long to insert an IV, so in case of an emergency, they can get access fairly quick. If they try to fight you on that, let them know that if you NEED one, they can do it, and they should back off about it. I am sure it would be much more comfortable for you to labor without an IV, and I really hope it works out! I will be very interested to see how your nurses are; I hope you get the best ones!

    Lastly, and this is just something to think about (as is all that I’ve suggested of course), but rather than 20 minutes on, 20 off for monitoring, what about intermittent monitoring between contractions? Really all they are doing is checking baby’s heartbeat to make sure she’s not in distress, & they have portable Dopplers for that so you can still be moving/in another position besides your back.

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  • Sasha

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    I haven’t read all of the comments so I don’t know if anyone has already said this – sorry if this is a repeat. I have nothing to say about your birth plan as it is. I take issue with how you worded your explanation of why you don’t want students in the room. It is up to you whether you want students in the room or not. Being uncomfortable with them is reason enough to request their absence. However, you said, “They can teach kids on someone else.” Frankly, I find this extremely arrogant, not to mention harmful. If everyone were to say this, there would be no one on which students could practice. Your blog is popular and you had the opportunity to encourage the training of future nurses and doctors even if you yourself do not want them involved in your care. It is unfortunate that you did not choose to do so.

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  • Kristi

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    Just a question, and it’s it meant to be rude, but why wouldn’t you go with a midwife in a birthing center?

    When I gave birth to my daughter last year I had a midwife, and honestly I didn’t have to explain any kind of birth plan with her. Her and I seemed to be on the same page when it came to birthing, so she didn’t even ask if I wanted to be hooked up to anything, didn’t even suggest fetal monitoring, IV, etc. I just labored at home until I was 7cm, then went to the hospital where she pretty much just sat back and let me do my thing. I just ask because it seems like your plan falls more in line with that of a midwife than an OB.

    I think your plan sounds fine FWIW.

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  • Holly

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    Elena, this post brings up so much emotion with me. I so hope that your plan can get followed as closely as possible. I hate to poo-poo on nurses (because I know they go into the field to help others, and I am an ICU nurse, myself) but they totally ignored my plan and I am still deeply upset by it. Be strong! I felt so vulnerable during birth and allowed them to take over at times. My husband was often too overwhelmed to confront, too. One of the “baby nurses” really lectured me for wanting delayed cord clamping (even though it wasn’t an option b/c my cord ripped during delivery). I had done a LOT of research and made an informed decision on this! Here I was, in post-delivery bliss, with this brat of a nurse telling me off for what I had previously wanted. Additionally, I had to be induced and was not responding to the pitocen or cervidil. My doc gave me cytotec. It got me to dilate. I hadn’t come across the fact that it was such a dangerous drug during my research. I can’t believe that my doctor, whom I trust, used this on me! Later, I questioned a pharmacist at another hospital in the area about this and he said that the use of cytotec is very widespread in the Denver area and that no one questions it. What??!! Then, we had wanted to have the baby on my chest for a while after birth, and they had her in the warmer for what felt like forever. Again, my husband wasn’t able to confront the nurses about this. She wasn’t able to nurse for 7.5 hours. Next time, my introverted personality is going to Flip-the-F-Out if the nurses pull this on me again. First time was a learning experience, next time will be different. Oh yeah, and we did not want her bathed for several hours. They totally treated her like she had leprosy! So, I gave in, and let her get a bath. If you want to hear my birth story, here’s the link: http://www.ohmyminiblog.com/2011/08/birth-story.html

    warning- i am in my bathrobe and it is pretty dorky!!

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    • L/d RN

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      I am sorry you had a bad experience. I wonder if there was a real lack of communication going on. Cytotec or misoprostol is given all over the world for induction of labor as well as postpartum to prevent hemorrhage after delivery of the placenta. It helps the uterus to contract down to stop bleeding. It’s use is EXTREMELY common though it is used off label (I believe it was originally used for aid in gastric ulcers) and it’s cheap. Pitocin, Magnesium even Cervidil can be high risk medications if they are not used according to ACOG guidelines. I mean Fentanyl is high risk if I give you 200mcg of it and you stop breathing. Some times you can have a turkey of a nurse -I know, I ‘ve worked at many hospitals and sometimes the RN culture is one of negativity. The hospital I currently work at is very progressive. We always do at least one minute of delayed cord clamping be a vag delivery or c/s because this actually helps with preventing fetal anemia and does not increase the risk of jaundice in the newborn. We initiate skin to skin contact as soon as baby is born and as long as baby isn’t having any resp issues. We initiate breastfeeding within the first 30 mins to hour. We have donated banked breast milk that we can give if supplementation is needed and we have great lactation nurses. We try to have Dad cut the cord and as long as everyone is fine we delay bath, meds and measurements until family has bonded. I’m not sure why they kept your baby in the warmer so long unless she was having resp issues, or thermoregulation issues or maybe low blood sugar. But if the babies temp is low the baby will regulate themselves much better resp/temp wise going skin-to-skin. I’m all good for whatever my pts wishes are as long as they are safe for you and baby. Thanks

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  • Michele

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    Just wanted you to know that your birth plan was so helpful! I am having child number two but the first we actually planned to do it at home (then had to be transferred) so I feel like I am new at all the hospital stuff! It’s good to see a good balance of natural while keeping babies best interest at heart. Your birth plan helped me to see what things I could/need to be agressive about. Wishing you the best and that you go into labor soon!

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  • 07587136107547265653

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    The birth plan sounds amazing and even better is your OB is willing to work with you. I hope everything works out so that you can go with your plan but definitely expect the unexpected. Birth is amazing and for me very spiritual experience! Can’t wait to hear how everything goes and to see pictures of your sweet babes!

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  • Beth

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    I think it’s lovely and I wish you the best birth experience possible!

    This may have already been said, so I apologize if it’s a repeat. I think that if there are naysayers, they might think that they are just trying to help. I’ve seen a few mothers have a completely different birth experience than what they wanted and it left them feeling depressed, guilty, grieving, etc. The people posting negative feedback might think that they are trying to save you that anxiety! IDK, though.

    We also delayed the eye ointment for our son, and I liked that he was able to look up at me directly and focus on my face/voice immediately.

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  • Sarah

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    Good luck with your birth plan. I prepared with Hypnobirthing, and I loved it. Unfortunately, baby girl had other plans, and she never dropped below a -2 station, even after being fully dilated, effaced, and pushing for 2 hours. I will say, though, that the Hypnobirthing techniques kept me calm, cool, and collected through receiving the epidural after 18 hours (when it became evident that she wasn’t dropping) and my c-section. So calm, that the doctor kept asking my husband if I understood what he was telling me (about the c-section). I recommend Hypnobirthing (or H-babies) to everyone who is hoping to go med-free.

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  • LeAnn

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    My birth was much like your sister – they told me it would be hours, I said I can’t do it that long, give me an epi, and 30 minutes later I was pushing – the epi didn’t kick in until after the birth :(

    I will say that plans are great, but don’t beat yourself up if it changes – having a healthy baby is the most important thing!

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  • Kristin

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    Just wanted to say sorry that you are having to deal with all of the unsolicited advice. You are clearly intelligent and well-informed and you are preparing for your ideal birthing situation, which is exactly what you should do. You’re entitled to it and I think you’ll find the hospital staff to be accommodating and welcoming of your wishes. I had a beautiful hospital birth using hypnobirthing and a traditional OB. The staff was extremely respectful of our wishes and helped create a peaceful environment around us during labor with plenty of bonding time after the birth. So much of what happens is based on your expectations and knowledge, so I’m sure you guys will have a wonderful experience. Best of luck to the three of you! Looking forward to more updates :)

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  • Emily

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    This is FANTASTIC! Thanks for sharing. I am a few months away from giving birth to my first but beginning to think about the birth plan. I look forward to hearing how it goes. All the best!

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  • Sarah S

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    I just want to say that I have had two unmedicated hospital births – 5 and 7 years ago and they both went perfectly. No one pushed pain meds, eye drops or anything we didn’t want. The babies were both healthy and so was I. One of my babies was even delivered standing up and no one batted an eye or asked me to get into bed. It was awesome. I tell this because there is so much fear out there and stories of terrible births that I like to share that mine was great and it is doable. Good luck!

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  • anon

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    I have been waiting for this post! This helps me a lot. Thank you so much for sharing.

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  • Stefanie

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    I hope your birth goes as you want it to– But I hope that if it doesn’t, you are comfortable being flexible in considering other options. As many other people have pointed out (and I’m sure you already know), there are so many unexpected things that can happen during labor & sometimes we have to stray from “the plan” in order to get the baby out safely. (After two births in 13.5 months, I can say that neither of them went how I envisioned they would.) Good luck!

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  • Jayne

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    {Actually, Andrew will as I’ll be “busy” with other things)

    What will you be busy doing???

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    • anon

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      Natural: Delivering the placenta, nurses stopping any hemoraging that may occur, and maybe getting stitched up.

      C-Section: Remoing placenta, Getting closed, and stitched which will take a bit of time.

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  • Lori Falce

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    I’m sorry, but by posting your blog as an open forum with a way to place comments, nothing that someone says regarding one of your posts is “unsolicited.”

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  • Sara

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    I can’t comment on a lot of this, but I will say that I tore with my son, and had an epi. with my daughter, and my recovery from my epi was sooooo much easier than with my son. Do I wish I could have avoided either – heck, yes! But if I have a third, I will ask my Dr. to cut instead of letting me tear.

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  • Kelly

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    The reality is that many women have undiagnosed sexually transmitted diseases which can be acquired after the testing is done. How can pediatricians possibly guess which women are infected and which are not? How do you decide who to trust? And what if the woman herself is unaware of her infection infidelity and STIs are of uncommon. It is none of my business what you choose but misinformation was provided (that the eyedrops are antiquated and treat syphillis – both untrue.) and I feel it is imperative to make informed choices.

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    • Kylie

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      All babies don’t need eye ointment for the same reason that all babies don’t need antibiotics for GBS. Prophylactic treatment for conditions which have already been screened and ruled out is not grounded in evidence.

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  • Jo

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    I am a new visitor to your site, I don’t know if you’ve addressed this or not, but it seems you are very low risk and looking to have a low intervention birth. Why are you seeing an OBGYN and not a midwife?

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  • Anna

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    Elena, thank you so much for sharing this plan. It’s so helpful to me, I haven’t thought about some points you mentioned and I totally agree with them (e.g. low voices, minimal necessary people in the room). You are an inspiring person. I really really hope you’ll get the best case scenario, you deserve it!
    I cannot wait for your post on how was your real experience what you would/wouldn’t do different next time. And the photos!
    Again, good luck!

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  • Camille

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    This sounds a lot like my birth plan! Everything went great for me and they were really respectful! Even though I was 42 weeks and 3 days and ended up getting an induction, everything really turned out great. I used HypnoBirthing. My least favorite part of the labor was the IV but that’s because I have a needle fear. Good luck, I hope you have a great birth!!

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  • Jnj512

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    I wish you the best of luck and hope it all goes as planned!

    I did want to add something along the lines of one other poster about the exclusive BF wishes on your list. I wanted to exclusively BF with both my kids and my body never produced milk….I mean after a whole day maybe an ounce total for the day! I worked with lactation specialists and we did before and after feeding weighing the baby and all sort of things to try to boost my pretty much non existent supply. It just never happened with either of my babies. It was devastating for me because all along everyone said that it would happen, the body knows what to do, if you keep working at it it will happen. It just never crossed my mind that it wouldnt. I guess my point is that it is NOT possible for everyone, so although that is your wish please remember that every body is different and not to beat yourself up if you DO have to resort to supplementing. My oldest is now 8 and I STILL have issues with it :(

    Not trying to scare you or anything, just putting it out there for you to open your mind a little just in case. The lactation specialists said it is rare but happens more than people think. I just think it is good for people to know so they arent as devastated as I was and can mentally prepare in advance a little.

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  • Amy

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    I have given birth 3 times with no pain meds. Two of them were induced (I have a very comfy uterus), all of them were in hospitals. I *can’t* have an epidural (spinal fusion), I *choose* not to receive narcotic pain meds.

    Most hospitals have to offer you pain management – I make it a point when I am admitted to tell the nurse right then and there to ask me if I would like something for the pain. I get that part out of the way before I am to the point of wanting them :). I then specifically tell the nurse to make a note somewhere very visible that I am NOT to be offered pain meds unless I request them. And then my husband has to verify that I really want them and am not just letting a contraction speak for me. This system has worked very well for us.

    I also wanted to let you know that you may be a novelty to the nurses, so be prepared for them to not know what to do with a woman having an unmedicated birth. My last birth, I was assigned a horrible nurse that had no idea what to do with me. Apparently word had been spread through the nurses and an angel suddenly appeared in our room. The nurses had switched so that I could be attended to by a woman that had chosen unmedicated births herself. She stayed an hour and a half past her shift just to be with me, and attend the birth of my baby.

    Good luck!

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  • Kelly B

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    I was induced with my twins. I had what my dr called an “easy” induction. They insert a foley catheter into the cervix, fill it with saline and it falls out when you reach 3cms. In my case it fell out within 15 minutes. It was very easy. I was also given pitocin but did not think the contractions were terrible. To get the “easy” you have to be making progress on your own, which you are. Just wanted to share that in case you do have to be induced. You don’t necessarily need cervadil.

    Best of luck for a quick and easy delivery!

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  • Lauren C.

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    I gave birth at a birthing center in TN, staffed completely by certified nurse midwives and your birth plan mirrors exactly how my labor went. EXACTLY. No drugs, no intervention, very few cervical checks and heart beat monitoring. No IVs, and the cord clamping was indeed, delayed. After my son was born, he was given to me right away to begin bonding and nursing, no bath, no eye ointment, none of that. The midwife actually had me take my top off before I began pushing so we could have the skin to skin contact imm. after his birth. During my entire 15 hour labor, no one was in the room but my husband and sister and I used all the hypnobirthing techniques I’d learned during my pregnancy. The lighting was dim and we had incense burning. The midwife who caught my son only came in the room to check on me every so often and check my progression. I was allowed to eat, drink, and get into any position i desired. My baby boy was born a healthy 8 lbs on the nose and I had no episiotomy nor did I naturally tear. I didn’t require one stitch afterwards. We were discharged from the center exactly 6 hours after his birth. My son is now 6 months old and thriving. My labor and his birth were exactly as I wanted them and I hope you have the same wonderful experience. The only thing that I worry about for you is that you are giving birth in a hospital and they aren’t always so lenient on some of the “non-intervening” wishes you have. I would go over this thoroughly with your doctor beforehand so they will be prepared to honor your birth plan. Sorry, if this is irrelevant to you or if I’m being long winded, but for those of you who doubt that this can happen for her, please reconsider. If this is the plan you want, IT CAN BE DONE. Be brave, girl. You can do it! Much luck to you and your sweet baby girl!

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  • L/d RN

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    I always find birth plans make me kind of roll my eye but am always supportive of them for the most part. Many of them can be non-realistic at times. The more basic the better. But here’s the thing. We are trying to make sure you have a baby that doesn’t die, get infected, get cerebral palsy and all the other miscellaneous stuff that can happen. It doesn’t always happen but it happens enough because often enough you can’t control or predict what is going to happen. Just because your mother had a quick birth doesn’t mean you will. And it does not all flow like it does in 30 min episodes on the birthing channel. The reason labor and delivery is more invasive then it used to be is for litigous reasons. The first one to sue is the one who had a birth plan that didn’t go the way they had “planned” and end up with an infant that may be injured. If you want to be as natural as possible that’s great have a home birth and a lay midwife. But don’t act like we’re the bad guys. I have been doing labor and delivery for 15 years and have seen that usually the people who have birth plans – everything all planned out are the ones who have long, labors, have bad FHR tracing’s that end up in having a c/s or vac or forceps. That is why the hospital staff will be kind of annoyed when you don’t want an IV or at least a saline lock, because it is going to be me trying to throw that sucker in your arm when you are hemorrhaging.Or instructing me the nurse not to say the word “pain” because that might make you want some pain medication of which you then end up getting an epidural. (O and I have to put an IV for that and your shouting to hurry up now cause your hurting.) Or you have a Doula who contradicts everything we’ve said but you will trust her more because she’s had minute training and a couple of kids instead of someone who’s been doing this most every day for the last upteen years.

    I apologize if I sound snarky. But it’s your first baby. I hope everything goes according to your plan and everything works out but that’s not always how life works. But letting your wishes be known to staff is great if their safe for you and baby. Because that’s all we are trying to do is help you have a healthy delivery. If you don’t want those interventions I suggest a home birth or birthing center.

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  • Salt

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    I’m wondering, what about a vitamin K pill instead of a shot to newborns? Or is that not advisable?

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  • Ashley

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    This was amazing to read! Gives good insight to things to think about. I am so glad you wrote this.

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  • Dina

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    Lena! Did u do K vitamin injection?

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  • Linz @ Itz Linz

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    thank you so much for sharing your birth plan! i’m about 6 weeks away so am trying to put my plan together and want to consider everything and not forget anything! :) do you have a post on what you would do differently now that you delivered or anything like that?

    Reply

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