Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Birth plan.

This week in our natural childbirth class we'll be covering birth plans. We were told to bring ours in so we can discuss what we've come up with so far. It's a work in progress, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I borrowed from books, friends, etc. etc. to build it. Anyways, I want to throw it out there in case anyone else is in the process of building a birth plan as well....and to seek any suggestions/additions from other mamas! Based on the suggestions of numerous people, I've managed to keep it to one page.

Our goal is to deliver our baby as safely and naturally as possible without unnecessary medications or procedures. While we are committed to this ideal and have taken great care to prepare ourselves physically and emotionally for a natural birth, we understand that birthing is a process that seldom goes precisely as planned. As such, we will work willingly with our care providers to adjust our plan and to make alternative decisions about labor, delivery, and postpartum care should the need arise. We understand that final decisions about our care will be discussed and agreed upon in the birthing room with Emily’s well-being and that of our baby being the most important considerations.

In addition, Emily wishes:

First-Stage Labor

- Please do not offer medications or suggestions for use of medications unless requested by Emily

- Intermittent (not continuous) monitoring

- Emily would like freedom to move/walk around and use tub/shower during labor

- Emily would like to stay hydrated through fluid consumption, not an iv

- No vaginal exams following rupture of membranes

- To avoid augmentation measures such as the artificial rupturing or stripping of membranes and/or pitocin unless a specific medical need arises.

- If our midwife determines that a Cesarean birth is indicated or if other complications arise, we request that all courses of action be explained thoroughly and performed only with our active consent.

- In the case of a Cesarean birth, Brett and Wilma (doula) will accompany Emily in the operating room

Second-Stage Labor

- A range of choices of positions for pushing

- To avoid episiotomy, to protect actively against tearing through the use of perineal massage/hot compresses/position changes- please don’t rush pushing

- Please place baby immediately on mother’s abdomen after delivery

- Allow Brett (dad) to announce the baby's sex

- Allow Brett to cut the cord, only after it has stopped pulsing

- Baby to breastfeed as soon as it is ready

After Birth

- No pitocin/pulling of cord to deliver placenta- to save the placenta (refrigerate immediately)

- Baby to room-in with mother at all times, or to be accompanied by Brett if need arises for baby to visit nursery

- Please allow Emily to give baby’s first bath

- Please delay all routine procedures for the baby for at least one hour after delivery

- No Hepatitis B vaccine or antibiotic eye ointment/Silver Nitrate to be given to baby

- Baby to be breastfed exclusively. Please, no bottles, pacifiers, formula, or water

Thank you again for your support and for your kind attention to our choices.


Jenny said...

That looks pretty comprehensive to me! I wish mine had been half that good the first time.

Denise said...

Emily, your plan is so concise and easy to understand and read. I think it's Wonderful! I really liked your writing before your list of what you would-would not like. It sets forward how much thought you've put into it, but also how considerate you are to not just have rules for rules sake. You sound like a gracious patient even before the process has started!

I am SO excited for you and Brett. I am excited that someone so diligent about the whole process is going to embark on this amazing journey. I am hoping and praying it's everything you've dreamed. Like I said, for me, it was an amazing right of passage that I am SUPER proud of myself for accomplishing. You will be too.

We'll be going up to Atlanta this Sunday. I am stopping by Babies R Us. Anything you need?

Denise said...

Oh yeah - I LOVED the part where you said you want Brett to announce the baby's gender!!!! How special to have his voice reverberate in your head for years to come with the announcement....

Emily said...

Denise- you almost just made me cry! Dang pregnancy hormones! You are too sweet.

I can tell you without a doubt that the no.1 thing I am looking forward to right now is hearing Brett's voice make that announcement! On one hand I am jealous of people who know the gender, but on the other hand I think this will be so special.

Kacie said...

Sounds good! I had a few complications and my birth didn't quite go as planned, but I think having this helped the staff understand my main wishes.

My Bradley teacher told us to highlight the 3 most important points, in case the labor nurse just skims the sheet.

Also, if you aren't comfortable with your labor nurse, ask to see the charge nurse to see if you can get switched. My first nurse was not on board with natural stuff, but her shift was ending and the second one was great!

I had a few things in mine, like:

"If I ask for pain medication, please try to talk me out of it first. If you sense that I'm in transition, please tell me!"

Since I knew transition would be hard and that's when I'd likely talk pain meds. Turns out, that's when I started mentioning epidurals!

And yep, they were able to talk me out of it.

I had a code word for my husband. If I used his full name, it meant that I wasn't kidding -- I really really wanted pain meds. I never used it.

I think I might have been given a little Pit once the placenta was out. It supposedly helps stop the bleeding.

I had a hep-lock IV thing, and I wish I had just opted out of it. Turns out, I needed IV meds for my preeclampsia, so I would have had it anyway.

You've probably already thought this over, but if you have a boy, it's a good idea to decide whether or not to have him circumsized before birth.

Kacie said...

...and by "before birth," I mean before he's born...not to be circed while in the womb! heh

We opted to leave my son intact, and I'd be happy to talk more about our decision if you have any questions.

SA said...

I love your birth plan, Emily. A lot of similarities between yours and ours, and of course, David's and my hope for you guys is that your labor and delivery goes in such a way that you're able to adhere to most, if not all, of your plan. Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers!

Emily said...

Thanks, Kacie!

I've already talked to my midwife about the "ignore me when I'm in transition" clause and she is happy to comply....lol. She, my doula, and my husband all know to ignore me, but I may have to add a line for the nurses' sake!

As for circ...I am EXTREMELY against it, but my husband is being very difficult. I've tried to show him videos, articles, etc. concerning why circ is unnecessary (and wrong, in my opinion), but no luck. In class this week we're going to talk about it, and I'm hopeful maybe his mind will change. Lots of praying going on about this one!

Emily said...

We're praying for you too, Sally Ann!

Ed and Elizabeth said...

I like the idea of Brett announcing the sex of the baby. Ed got to do it and he was sooo proud and excited. Ed also got to catch Jack when he came out (while the doctor stood right there of course). We had a really cool doctor who explained everything and let us pretty much do things as we wanted. Now Ed can tell everyone he delivered his son. Don't be jealous of the people who know the sex already...it's MUCH MORE FUN to be surprised. Ed and I already said that we will never find out for the next babies b/c we loved the surprise so much. Hang in there!! :)