I’ve made the executive decision to not post my regular weekly update this week. Lil Ziggy is fine and dandy, I’m just dead tired and can barely muster a smile tonight. If I receive a refreshing jolt of energy and feel like doing a bump pic tomorrow, I’ll put it up and share.
Tonight, I thought I’d write up Part 1 of my Birth Plan. I’m doing it in two parts because I felt I needed to write about why I created a birth plan in the first place. After doing a superficial Google search of other bloggers’ birth plans, there seems to be a lot of “my birth plan is to not have a plan because they never work out”. But I just can’t think that way.
So here are the reasons why I wrote up a birth plan with the help of my fantastic doula, Brittany:
Confidence in my decisions
LOTS of research has gone into creating this birth plan, and it’s based on what I’ve learned and how I feel about what I’ve learned. Because I have a birth plan, I feel way more confident about going into labour. And because I’ve done so much research into the process and the potential complications and the medical options available to me, I currently do not feel nervous about it. I’m not naïve, I know very well that once things start going I will very likely feel some (or a lot of) anxiety, but at least I am not dreading all the what-ifs weeks out. Knowledge is empowering.
Maintaining some control
When it actually starts to happen and I go into labour, I am very happy that I have a flexible plan established that acts as a guide or framework for what I want to have happen to my body. Because I have the confidence that comes with having a plan, I will feel more in control of what happens (at least as much control as I can possibly have at the time – see below).
My healthcare providers and birth partners can properly support me
I need my birth partners to know my preferences so they can support and advocate for me as best they can. Even with as much research as I’ve done to create this plan, and even though I believe my knowledge will help me maintain control, it feels good to know that the people who will be going through this with me know what I want and can assert my preferences at times when I’m unable to do so. Like when I’m in transition, and if I start to lose that control.
It reminds me of my wedding day… I was prepared for what was coming, but the emotions of the day rendered me rather useless with on-the-spot judgement calls – I deferred to my bridesmaids for a lot of day-of decisions. Thankfully, my bridesmaids were all wonderful and kept me grounded the whole day through.
But but but…. What happens if things go sideways?
I know that things happen. I don’t have to be a 5th time mom to know that childbirth can be wildly unpredictable. But, as I wrote in my warnings vs. encouragement post a few weeks ago, our society needs a little optimism these days, especially around the topics of pregnancy, childbirth and parenthood.
The truth is… if I go in believing my plan will end up being a waste of time, I’m only setting myself up for failure. Complications do arise, and you can only plan for so much. So, I’m planning for what I can.
No matter how things shake out on my sweet Lil Ziggy’s birthday, I’m glad that I did the work to create a birth plan that reflects my knowledge and values. Instead of fearing it, I’m looking forward to it, and that’s a great feeling to have.
Moms, did you create a birth plan before you went into labour? Why or why not?
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