The Birth Plan (kinda)

Before Ellie’s birth I immersed myself in forums, books and websites to inform and prepare myself for the impending arrival of my little bundle. I was obsessed with getting as prepared as possible. I worried about having the right amount of clothes in the right sizes for the right season. I worried about the nursery being the appropriate colour and theme. Once I got over my fear of labour, I worried about the birth and mulled over the decisions I was making. Just like any Mum-to-be does.

In the latter stages, I read through tonnes of Birth Plans as I wrote mine to ensure I didn’t miss something important that could cause a problem at a time when my ability to make decisions might be impaired. I wanted the midwives, doctor and James to be informed and aware of my wishes.

By the time my due date came and went I was too busy trying to convince Ellie to get a wriggle on to think too much more about the plans I had made. At 41 weeks, when I saw my Ob, I completely forgot to take my plan with me. I ended up being induced and having to have an emergency Caesarean. Both were on my ‘do not want‘ part of the plan, along with intervention.

I gave myself time to come to terms with the situation. For a day or so I wondered what ill effects would come of not experiencing the birth I had wanted, but honestly, the guilt I thought I should feel simply wasn’t there. I decided to give myself a break. After all, the birth wasn’t horrible, in fact in was smooth and calm. My recovery was easier than I expected. I had no regrets and knew I had done the right thing.

Before Kahlei’s arrival, I did the same preparation as I did with Ellie. Only this time I was researching VBAC vs repeat caesarean. I was surprised to find the passion for one verses the other. Wading through the scores of personal beliefs and experiences I found so much negativity and judgement from those who have done the opposite of others. I had to step back from the online communities and focus on facts and research to make my decision. I spent some time thinking I should want to attempt a VBAC, after all, I had wanted to birth Ellie as naturally as possible. The choice to have a repeat c-section was not an easy one to make, but it was the right one for my situation and baby.

The only thing I had on my, now mental, “Birth Plan” was the fact that I did not want to be put under general anesthetic for the birth. Missing out on the first moments of my child’s life was the last thing I wanted. So, guess what happened? Yup, I was put under. After a drama less delivery of Ellie I was less than thrilled with my second time experience. I barely remember my time in the hospital, I suppose someone was bringing me the baby to feed as she survived! My recovery was lengthy and painful. Even though it was not a great experience, I stand by my decision and know it was the right thing for Kahlei.

19 months later and here we are again. Honestly, this bub was not planned. I had rules and the most important one has yet to be met. As much as I wish I was a super mum who could cope without the support of close friends and family, I simply can’t. I need to take a break from time to time and when we have to travel 5 hours away to get that it’s kind of negating the whole reason as traveling is taking so much out of me currently. I need to spend time with adults and not spend so much time lonely.

Tomorrow I will be 20 weeks, marking the halfway point. This pregnancy is going much faster than the other two, probably because I now have two busy toddlers demanding most of my time. I have again researched my options and decided on a 3rd c-section rather than a VBA2C. I have accepted that this is how I have my children and come to my decision peacefully. I do feel nervous about the prospect of having another bad experience, but I am hoping to avoid a GA.

The only thing I really, really want for this birth (other than to be awake) is to have Phoenix in our new town. One of the saddest things about my previous hospital stays was the lack of visitors. I feel sad that there wasn’t many people to share the joy of my precious new babies. I want to be surrounded by people who love and care about me and my family at such an important time. Luckily, my mum has been here for both births and my dad was here for Kahlei’s otherwise I would have felt so much worse! I want the organisation of my time in hospital to be easy and I want to be able to have people on hand to lean on once we go home.

I want there to be someone who might pop around with a cooked meal or to play with the girls while bubs and I nap. I want to be able to call someone and have them come visit so I don’t go insane from lack of adult conversation during the day.

I wonder if I write it out in a plan format if I will get what I want?

3 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing this Becky. I always find everyone's birth experiences fascinating, and yours was def interesting to read!

    I have 3 boys. I have never had a birth plan for any of them, simply because a) with my first, as I hadn't given birth before, I didn't know what to expect and b) I didn't want to get disappointed if I didn't stick to my plan.

    All 3 births were fairly similar, just a couple of different choices for each, and I'm glad I didn't do a plan. I felt it easier to make decisions as they came, and not put pressure on myself to have the birth go a certain way.

    But each to their own!

    Good luck – hope it goes smoothly. 🙂

  2. I think you should write that you DON'T want to move before Pheonix is born, and then it might happen.

  3. I didn't write a birth plan – mine was just "get him out of there safely." Ultimately it was a good thing… I had pre-eclampsia and had to be induced.

    I think it is great that you know what you want as long as you're flexible, which it sounds like you are!

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