Birth Plans get a bad rap, if you ask me. Many people hear the term and cringe or roll their eyes. The argument against Birth Plans isn’t a bad one, I suppose:
“Birth never goes according to plan anyway!”
I can’t say that isn’t true. Childbirth has natural patterns, certainly, but each baby born is unique and so shall be his entrance. Writing a Birth Plan shouldn’t be a mother’s way of saying,
“This IS how my birth will be!” or
“Everything MUST go this way!” or
"My birth, MY BIRTH! RARR! Stomp, stomp!!"
(Though I can't say I'd discourage any mother from RARRing or stomping as she sees fit!)
If you're not a RARRer or a stomper though, that doesn't mean that Birth Plans aren't for moms like you. Birth Plans aren't for a certain kind of mom. In fact, writing a Birth Plan isn't really for the sake of having Birth Plan at all! Rather, putting together a Birth Plan is about the process of thoughtfully considering all the “what-if”s.
Let me say that again. Writing a Birth Plan isn't about having a Birth Plan. It's about the process. The thinking. The thinking ahead, thinking clearly, thinking rationally... thinking with facts at your fingertips.
There will be a lot of decisions made on the day of your baby’s birth, and for much of it, you will not be thinking as clearly as you are right now. In many ways, you will not even be the same person! Your birthing hormones will be flooding your body and your mind, and you will likely not want to be bothered with a bunch of mumbo-jumbo concerning membrane rupture, delayed cord clamping, or the risks vs. benefits of an epidural. And who could blame you? The heat of the moment is never the best time to make important decisions. So let’s get over that “oh, she’s one of those moms with a Birth Plan” mentality already and call this what it is:
"The Official List of Thoughtfully Considered Birth Preferences for a Mother and Partner Who Want Nothing but the Best for Their Baby"
Too long? Fine. We’ll work on the title.
Think about it.
[Stay tuned for "Birth Plans, Part 2: HOW?" coming soon!]