Saturday, March 24, 2012

Why Do I Need a Birth Plan>

Birth plans are for you. They give you the opportunity to learn about what you don't know about, what you do or don't want for your "perfect" birth experience. You probably have chosen your providers and hospitals because you trust them. So trust them and know that they will guide you in decision making when it comes down to the bottom line. They don't have a birth plan for you and your birth plan isn't for them. Birth plans are for you.

Take your classes. Read a book. One good book about labor and delivery, not ten books. Go to one good and responsible, informative website ( maybe Mayo Clinic ) and don't take advice or suggestions from friends and family. Speak with a childbirth educator and your providers. Know what the facility where you will deliver has to offer you. Midwife vs. doctor? Birthing suite with private bath? Water Birth facility? Kangaroo Care?

As you start to research you will find that one question leads to another and soon you will start to develop what sounds like what you think you want for your "perfect" delivery. Then you go to that special book or trusted site and read a template for a birth plan. Read a few birth plans.

Talk about what you envision with your partner. Interventions? Medications? When you plan on arriving at the birthing center. What you need ( or think you need )  your partner to do for you during labor. Who do you want to labor with you?  Do you have your heart set on a medicinally unassisted birth ? Do you want an epidural? Do you know what your options are for pain relief? Who do you want with you while you are pushing and delivering? When do you want the cord cut? By whom? Collecting stem cells? What about the placenta? Do you want it?

See, the list of wants and needs is long. So you have to know what you are talking about to write the plan for your "perfect" birth. You have to go back and read that book and go to that trusted site, really. And then you have to know that the plan is for you. TO EDUCATE YOU, so you know what labor and delivery is like and what may happen and what you can control.

There are very few providers or facilities that really look at, let alone keep your plan. That trusted  provider, at that wonderful facility knows all about how a"perfect" delivery should go. They know how to guide you and listen to you, in real time so you get as close to what means "perfect" for you, according to the plan you wrote because you did your homework. But you can leave the plan at home; they don't need it. Your birth plan is for you!!