I’m a planner by nature. That’s just who I am and what I do…for a living and otherwise. During my pregnancy, I loved knowing what to expect by reading and signing up for every single newsletter. I took all the pre-labor classes and gabbed with other expecting moms, comparing notes. Despite all the planning coursing through my milkshake-laden blood, I just could not bring myself to do a birth plan.
The thought of the birth plan just seemed ridiculous to me. Is it realistic for my husband stop the chaos of labor and say, “now – just hold on a second, let me reference your laminated birth plan. Section 4b clearly states you do NOT want an epidural.” I mean really.
No doubt it’s a good guide for a dialogue between you and whoever is going to be in the room about your wants for birth; however, we all know – the second you put it writing, the opposite will happen. It’s just a fact of life.
Now that the labor is over, I would like to take this opportunity to write my Monday-morning-Quarterback birth plan.
To anyone signing me in to the hospital – let’s get the Q&A session and paperwork done during my 39 week check-up. Don’t ask me to read and sign something when my uterus is cramping like an athlete in the heat of the Amazon forest running a triathlon (work with me on that one). Same goes for paperwork checking out of the hospital. I have a newborn now and the past two days and months to follow are a big blur. I still to this day don’t know what papers I signed on my way out the hospital doors.
Don’t tell me to wait to come to the hospital until my contractions are 5 minutes apart, for 1 minute long for a span of 1 hour. As the kids say today, that’s cray-cray. I went from my contractions being 20 minutes apart to 10 minutes apart to 3 minutes apart in no time. If I followed your rule, I would’ve ended up on the news for being the lady that delivered her baby in her husband’s truck on the side of 51. Of course, I should’ve had my epidural during my 39 week check-up, too.
OMG. For my next kid, I expect a full-blown breakfast buffet outside of my room (must be mindful of sanitation). I remember looking at my husband between pushes and telling him how hungry I was. Thank you for the Italian ice while I was in labor though. It hit the spot for the two seconds I gobbled it down. I remember ordering breakfast after my 5:57am delivery. You would think I was training for a 1,000K run. I’ve never carbo-loaded on pancakes, waffles and French toast so much in my life.
Who’s in the room?
I don’t care. Anyone that will grab a leg and coach me can stay. Anyone who shreds a word of criticism can take a seat on the bench in the back and eat your popcorn.
Birth environment. No zen music. No lie, I laughed at the zen portion of the birthing class – it’s like it has the opposite effect on me. We had SportsCenter on. My daughter’s middle name is Espen (ESPN). No it’s not. But we considered it for a second.
I appreciate the professional photography the hospital offers. Next time, I will plan on having hair and makeup staff there like Beyonce so it’ll look I still have that “glow”. This will eliminate any evidence of my raccoon eyes from being up for nearly 48 hours, sobbing from her coming into the world. (Note: pack extra, extra concealer).
For those of you who had a birth plan – how did it work out for you? I know everyone is different and this was one area that I surprisingly just went with the flow of things. I knew I was in good hands and that in the end whatever happened was meant to be. Please share your birth plan stories or your “dang, why didn’t I think of that?” plans.