Saturday, July 28, 2007

The Birth Plan

I thought I'd share my birth plan. You may not want to read it if you get the heebie-jeebies at words like "perineum" but I would give it a G rating. The midwife center suggested writing out the things that I value about birth, what I found helpful or not so helpful with my previous births, and what I am hoping for during this birth experience.

The Midwife Center already does pretty much everything that I would have on my birth plan anyway--delayed cord cutting, walking around freely, pushing in any position, non-continuous fetal monitoring, no IVs, eating and drinking as I feel led etc.... so it felt redundant to have a giant list of things that I want that they already do.

At my appointment this past week one of the midwives went over it and thought it looked great. Her only comment was, "We see things very similarly". That is what I like to hear!

Birth Plan for Amelia and Jon Parker

I believe that birth is a beautiful, challenging, empowering and normal event. I am excited about having our 3rd baby at The Midwife Center. I love the thought of being in a more home-like environment and being able to take advantage of all that the birth center offers.

I love midwifery care and the values that midwifery care holds for their clients. One thing that has stood out to me about The Midwife Center is that you are strong advocates for women and their healthcare. I am very excited about partnering with you for this birth.

I am thankful for technology and medical interventions when they are needed but I strongly believe that routine and unnecessary interventions take away from the empowering effect that birth has on a mother. I realize that this birth may not go perfectly and things may happen that are out of my control. I am ready to make informed decisions for needed interventions for this labor and birth.

My previous two babies were born naturally and I prefer to not be offered any pain medication. I prefer to use natural techniques for dealing with the discomfort/pain of labor. My husband is a great labor support and I am really looking forward to using the Jacuzzi tub at the birth center.

I greatly appreciate that you encourage siblings to be at the birth and this will be the first time for one of my children to attend a birth. My oldest son, Ewan (pronounced you-an), will be with us. My mother will be there to keep watch over him. We are very excited for Ewan to experience this part of our family life. I would love it if he could be part of the activities as much as he wants to. (i.e. He has really enjoyed getting to put the doppler on my tummy and listen to the baby’s heartbeat.) I realize that as much as we have tried to prepare him here at home that he may have a different response than we expected, however it is important to us that he is there at the birth.

One thing I enjoyed from my second birth that I am wanting to re-create this time as well is a calm and relaxed atmosphere as I push out the baby. We were so excited with our first (Ewan) that I didn’t take the time to really watch Ewan come out and was more caught up in getting him out than taking time to enjoy the moment. I remember the midwife at my 2nd birth (Isaac’s) saying very calmly, “Okay, Amelia, breathe out the baby and watch him turn.” That was a very special moment to me and I remember it vividly to this day. I would love to repeat that calm environment during second stage. During my first birth I had hot compresses placed on my perineum and that felt marvelous. If it is possible to do that again—it would be well received!

Because my only experience of birth has been in the hospital, I am more familiar with birthing in a hospital bed (rather than a birth chair, floor etc.). With this birth I want to feel free to do what feels right to my body but I may need some encouragement to do that. I am open to suggestions and help. The birth rocking chair looked really inviting to me when we looked at all the rooms so I am interested in trying that during second stage.

My second birth was so unexpected and my labor so short that we didn’t get any pictures of me laboring. We are planning on bringing the camera to the birth and are open to any suggestions for good picture taking. Feel free to pick up the camera and take pictures!

Thank you so much for all you do and we are looking forward to experiencing this birth with you!

Amelia and Jon Parker


mamabrown said...

The Birth Plan sounds great to me. I am very excited about being there with you and having an opportunity to be with Ewan at the birth as well. He and I will be a good team at the birth center. He is getting to be such a big boy and I just feel he will be such a big help to you after the baby is born.

Grace said...

i pray everything goes just as you hope!

nicapamela said...

such a beautiful expression of your feelings about birth! if i ever get pregnant, you will be the first person i go to for advice, amelia. i love your perspective.

Amanda said...

I agree with Grace, I do pray that everything goes as you hope! I am sure having done this twice and being a teacher really helps a lot.

I have a question about the midwife center. Of course I absolutely pray that it doesn't happen, what happens if the baby gets stuck or something really extreme happens and you have to have a C-section. Do they do that there? I am just wondering. I don't know much abut midwife centers.

Oh, and I agree at not wanting an IV. I guess they serve a purpose, but I absolutely could not wait until they took mine out. As soon as the bag was empty, I called the nurse to come take it out.

amelia said...

Hey Amanda,

Good question. Many birth centers are within 5-10 minutes from a hospital. If I needed a hospital transport for something the hospital I would be transferred to is just 5 minutes away by car. If a TRUE, SERIOUS (baby needs to be removed surgically NOW) situation then an ambulance would be called.

For shoulder dystocia (baby getting stuck after the head is out) then the midwives are trained to get the baby out. The good thing is that most problems that require transfer are gradual and you have time to make decisions to get the transfer if you need it.

They have resuscitation capabilities for both mom and baby if anyone were having problems breathing after the birth. They have very strict requirements and certifications they have to keep updated.

Good question--other readers may have been wondering the same thing--like my (Grandma ;)).