Friday, September 12, 2008

Why I am "Anti-Birth Plan"

In theory, the birth plan is a fabulous idea. It sounds ideal and logical and wise. What could make more sense than putting all your preferences and intentions down on paper to let the world know? Isn't it best to make a commitment and share that with your medical provider?

When a birth plan works out, it's a great story. I've read birth stories of women who had very specific desires for their birth experience and, because of their plan and because they found a like-minded medical provider, they carried it out to a T. I'm left in awe of these women and so encouraged!

Unfortunately, more often, I hear stories from heartbroken women who were so very determined to "do it naturally", or "avoid any stitches", or "deliver in water", or "have daddy catch the baby", or "never, ever have a C-section"... and it just didn't happen that way. Ask me about my vehement anti-C-section philosophy.. and then go read C's birth story. Hmm.

Why do we have to measure ourselves against a "birth plan yardstick"? Isn't it better to go in with an open mind? By all means, have an idea how you'd like the birth to play out. Just don't get yourself so incredibly hung up on how every little detail goes down.

At the end of the day, going "drug-free" or without induction does not make you a hero...

Bringing a new, precious life into the world makes you a hero. However that life got here.


Extraordinary Ordinary Life said...

I could not agree more!

Edi said...

I agree too...I think it's best to have an idea in mind but to keep an open mind.

The important "thing" is a living child - not how that came about. The end, not the means, is what matters.

I remember getting a phone call from an acquaintance when she heard I was going to be induced - she and others had a negative attitude about it. Doesn't help a first time mama already concerned about labor and delivery - to hear people's opinions on what THEY think is the best thing to do.

I dislike the almost "bragging" attitude of "she did it with NO pain medication." Being that everyone's labor is different in time and intensity - it doesn't necessarily mean the no-meds woman was stronger or braver than the woman who had meds...

Amy @ Finer Things said...

First, you know I love you. :)

Secondly, I disagree. In this day and age of "protocol" and 90% of women "going with the flow" and maybe regretting it, I feel it's my *responsibility* to create a FLEXIBLE birth plan. Most doctors and nurses just *assume* that women will happily labor drugged up and on their backs, well... because most women do!

It's important for them to know up front that I'm not "most women" and that, barring any difficulties or emergencies, my husband and I are truly well trained and have it all under control.

If I don't tell them that, how will they know? If they don't know, how will I get what's right for me and my baby? And if I'm not allowed to walk around while laboring? Well... I might just walk myself right out of that hospital! ;)