Well the time has finally arrived to write my birth plan! I’m 35 week’s pregnant so I could possibly have done this already given it’s my second baby and I know what I want but I’m finally doing it now.
As long as my pregnancy remains ‘low-risk’ and no complications arise between now and the birth I have two possible options for the birth of my second baby – either a home birth at my house or a midwife-led birth in a birth centre within a hospital. I’m really happy with either option but my preference is to be at home.
My midwife has informed me that to have a home birth, I cannot go into labour before 37 weeks so Mini needs to stay put until then :) If I did go into labour before 37 weeks I would likely have to go to the main Labour and Delivery ward at the hospital. Miss M was born at 36 weeks and I went to the main hospital for that although I was pleased to still be midwife led and have a hypnobirth.
So here is my Birth Plan and if you’re also expecting, I hope it gives you an idea of the kind of things you might like to include in your own. These are what I wish to happen, given the choice, but I am completely flexible so it isn’t set in stone.
My Birth Plan will include:
1. Contact Details
Mine, my Emergency Contacts, Due Date and Midwife/Hospital Details.
Apart from this being useful information for my midwife, it will also be important in the event that I go into labour without having Mr M or my family around and perhaps need assistance from strangers or colleagues.
2. Medical Condition Notes
Currently I have no medical conditions or allergies that I need to make any midwives or doctors aware of but I’d write any of those in here.
3. Who will be Present
Hopefully Mr M will be there! There’s always a worry that it will be a quick birth and perhaps he’ll be at work and won’t get to me in time but all being well, he will be there as he was last time.
Midwife Support – I do not have many requests for my labour except to be left alone as much as possible. Last time my midwives were so empowering, they left me to labour with my hypnobirthing techniques the majority of the time and popped back in the room occasionally to tell me how well I was doing and check the monitors. That’s all I felt I needed but I knew if I needed them more, they would have stayed.
Music – I had grand plans of serene music playing and had a bunch of mp3s on my phone but didn’t feel the need to play them but I might get some ready just in case I do this time. When I hypnobirthed with Miss M’s labour and delivery, I actually couldn’t hear anything whilst I was doing the breathing exercises so music would have been a waste and potentially a distraction.
Internal Examinations – I only had 1 internal examination at the end of my labour last time to confirm I was 10cms dilated, I just did not feel the necessity to have any more and will ask for the same this time – only if necessary. I don’t feel the need to know every time I progress by 1cm!
Pain Relief – my preference is to limit pain relief to hypnobirthing, heat packs, water (birth pool), gas and air. This is what I used last time (minus the water) and it was entirely manageable so I’m hoping for the same. I’m flexible – I’m told frequently that each birth can be very different and I’m not aiming to be Super Woman – I’ll do what needs to be done for the baby and me.
Birthing Position – I want complete flexibility in this ideally – to labour and deliver in the water is my ideal but I’d like the option to walk around and change positions when I need to as well.
Delivery – Episiotomies – just the word makes me shudder – a small personal fear. Last time I was seconds from having to have one as luckily Miss M finally popped out before the wrapper came off the scissors! I want this labour and delivery to be as natural as possible again so hoping this will not be necessary and any tears are natural ones.
I would like to deliver as naturally as possible without the use of forceps, vacuums and other scary sounding devices. I’m happy for Mr to watch the main event if he wants to as long as he doesn’t shout ‘What’s the head doing?!’ like he did last time. Um, distracting!
Post Delivery – after Mini arrives (yay!), I want a full team of make-up artists and stylists to prepare me for my first photograph. Kidding! After the birth, complications permitting, I would like the baby to be popped on to my chest as Miss M was and to breastfeed when it is ready to.
Mr M might like to cut the umbilical cord again after it stops pulsating – it’s his choice on the day and I expect he will.
5. How I want to Deliver
I am aiming for a natural labour and delivery again and ideally, a water birth. Unfortunately I couldn’t have a water birth with Miss M as she was preterm and they needed to monitor her at all times. I’m really hoping this won’t be the case this time and I can labour and give birth in the water.
In the event I need to have a c section, I would like for Mr M to be with me at all times and for me to be conscious through it, if these options are possible. Again I would like the baby to be popped on to me straight away, if possible, and to breastfeed.
6. The Baby!
I want the baby to be with me at all times unless absolutely necessary to take me or it away. If I need any surgery etc, I want the baby to stay with Mr M. This is something I will not compromise on without very good reason. So any cleaning up, vaccinations, exams on the baby etc should be done in my presence and we would like to give the baby it’s first bath when the time comes.
7. Post Partum
If I’m not already a home, I want to go home as soon as reasonably possible – the same day would be great! Obviously if either the baby or I have any medical needs to stay at the hospital we will but I’ll be so excited to get home, get comfortable and settled and start our new life as a family of 4!
If I do need to stay in hospital, I’d like the baby with me at all times and for Mr M to be able to stay with us as much as possible. I’d also like to breastfeed on demand.
And I’d like a room of my own with a sea view ha ha!
Well I think that’s the main things covered! Have I missed anything?
Of course I am completely flexible with how things go on the day and this plan is not set in stone. My last birth experience gave me the chance to see that some things are just completely out of your control and I need to be flexible to go with whatever the baby and I need on the day. As long as my baby is happy and healthy when it ventures into the world, I’ll be a happy mummy and will do whatever I need to do to make that happen. :)
How did your birth go? Did you write a birth plan or go with the flow? Was there anything you would have done differently?