Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Help Me With My Birth Plan

Updated December 12, 2008

Bryan and I have been working on a birth plan after much ado with hospital protocol. Ideally, I would like to have my baby at a birthing center with a midwife but our city doesn't have one and the practice of homebirth midwifery is alegal in Indiana- a sticky complicated mess!

I continued to pursue finding a certified professional midwife but the nearest CPM is 2 hours away, we didn't think the traveling conditions would be an ideal situation for a labor/delivery in probable icy conditions for the CPM and back-up doctors are far and few. Who knew having a natural child birth could become such a black market ordeal!?

So here we are stuck in battle with the medical intervention world. I would like to note that I am very thankful for health care professionals and medical interventions when they are necessary but when it comes to birth I have a rather "crunchy" point of view after all, women have been safely bringing babies into the world for thousands of years! (Alright, I will come down off of my soap box) Before you write me off as being completely insane watch the "Business of Being Born"
...and now without further ado my birth plan. Please review and suggestions are welcome!!


Birth Plan for: ____________
Scheduled to deliver at________ Hospital: MD

I realize that a birth plan is a list of preferences and that things don't always go as planned. My primary request is to be fully informed and part of the decision-making process. Should I become incapacitated or unable to fully participate in the decision-making process, please consult my husband regarding any matters related to this birth plan, labor and delivery.
First Stage Labor
* A heparin lock without IV, I will self hydrate
* Intermittent fetal monitoring
* No continuous or internal fetal monitoring unless medically necessary
* Fluids and soft foods by mouth throughout the first stage of labor
* Internal vaginal exams kept to a minimum
* Freely walk around, use the shower, birthing ball from home and change position at will
Labor Augmentation
* As long as the baby and I are fine, I would like to be free of time limits and labor augmentation
* Prefer to allow the amniotic membrane to rupture naturally
* Changing position, walking or nipple stimulation before the amniotic membrane is ruptured or pitocin is given
Pain Medication
* We are striving for a drug free childbirth, please do not offer pain medication. I'll ask for it if I need it.
* If a Cesarean is necessary, to be fully informed and to participate in the decision-making process
* My husband present at all times if my baby requires a Cesarean delivery
* Leave one arm free to touch baby when born
* Double-layer suturing of the uterus (not single layer suturing)
* If not in distress, my baby should be given to my husband and myself immediately after birth
* Breastfeed as soon as possible after a cesarean delivery
Second Stage Labor & Delivery
* I would like to choose my birthing position, including squatting with a bar or on hands and knees
* If I am unmedicated, to wait to push until I feel the urge, even if there is a delay after full dilation
* Baby placed on my stomach/chest immediately after delivery
* Hold my baby while I deliver the placenta and any tissue repairs are made
* Deliver the placenta naturally without a pitocin injection or cord traction
* In the absence of fetal distress, I prefer to tear rather than have an episiotomy but am open to Doctors discretion
* Guidance and perineal massage when pushing so the perineum can stretch naturally
* Baby evaluated and bathed in my presence
* Delay antibiotic eye drops and Vitamin K shot for 1-2 hours after birth so that bonding time is not interrupted
* We decline the Hepatitis B vaccine for our newborn
* Full-time rooming in with baby and no separation unless medically required
* My husband to accompany our baby at all times if it must be taken to receive medical treatment
* If bili lights for jaundice are required, please bring them to my recovery room instead of baby going to the nursery
* I will be breastfeeding exclusively and would like to begin nursing very shortly after birth
* Do not give my baby anything by mouth (pacifier, glucose water, formula) without my expressed verbal consent


Shannon said...

I have to say....fascinating birth plan. Really. But if I may get up on *my* soapbox.....the best birth plan is no 'official' birth plan. Seriously Jen!!! With almost 6 I can tell you...Many of your ideas will work, you WILL have to fight over them in the hospital with the nurses. Be prepared to be like me and be charted upon as "a difficult patient-refusing intervention"...
The best birth for you will happen if you allow things to progress naturally. If you build yourself up to this crunchily righteous ideal and do not follow through (or are unable to), you may let yourself down. Instead, be prepared for a wild time...for something so amazingly organic and free that NO birth plan on paper could come close to. Above all, you and Bryan should enjoy being with each other and bringing this baby into the world.
So throw that damn 'plan' out the window and LIVE your birth!
-Shan....your mommy of almost six!

Jennifer said...

LOL...I love you!

spiritsong said...

I think it's a great birth plan! *hugs* I don't see anything lacking. Even if you have all of this written out and submitted beforehand, be prepared to advocate for the birth you want. Nurses and doctors have a way of pushing for what they want regardless of the patient's wishes.