Birth Plans: The Thing No One Tells You
Updated: Apr 1, 2020
Hey there mama! Are you expecting a little one soon? If this is your first, you will more than likely complete a birth plan like I did for my little one. What is a birth plan? A plan that details the little things (that you might not have thought of) that you want for your baby’s birth.
I gave birth at Dekalb Medical (What is now Emory Decatur Hospital) and they have this birth plan online. Some of the major things that were a major priority for me were the following:
So I was gearing up for D-Day (Delivery Day). I was the administrative assistant at a small charter school and I was naturally busy so I used every opportunity I could to walk around the school. Up the stairs, down the stairs, from the first floor, all the way to the fourth. Why? That baby was going to slide right out of me in the birthing pool. In fact, the hospital would let me labor in water, but I couldn’t deliver in water. I, however, was determined to walk so much that my labor would progress so quickly and the baby would still be born in water before the medical professionals had time to get me out.
The day my 1 year old nephew started becoming very enamored with my belly told me to pack my bags in case he was telling my son that it was time to come out. This was at 37 weeks pregnant. Granted my belly was big, but was it really that big?
Live photo at 38 weeks with baby boy squirming around
Okay, so maybe I was. So we packed our bags, birth plan on top, with the insurance papers, and all sorts of labor tips and tricks in the first go bag, clothes and recovery items in the main bag. Labor tips and tricks like pineapple juice, tennis balls, snacks like cheezits and almonds in the labor bag.
But what I didn’t see in the beginning of the birth plan was, “I will be flexible”. Yup, flexible about the decisions of the birth of my baby (and unfortunately, not flexible with my birthing positions).
So, have you finished your birth plan? Great! Now you have the following options:
Tear it up
Throw it in a lake
Frame it (It’ll provide a good laugh later)
Laminate it (so you can melt it down)
Keep reading, I promise I’m not crazy.
My birth plan went completely rogue (or do I say my son went rogue?). Well, for starters, at 40 weeks and 5 days, he was still just in there cooking and comfortable. At 40 weeks, I went in for my appointment and we got to do our second anatomy scan. I was so excited because it had been 20 weeks since I saw him last (via ultrasound). Well, SPOILER ALERT, at 40 weeks, there is no room in there so we really could not see much. As in, nothing worth photographing or anything. It was basically another anatomy scan to see how much baby might weigh based on measurements and numbers.
They said he was projected to be 9 pounds and 4 ounces. But projections are estimates and they can be wrong. He could’ve been 8 pounds and 4 ounces and I would’ve been just fine trying to deliver him naturally. But once they had that projection my doctor insisted on a c-section. So naturally, I cried. My mom and husband were so worried about me driving home from the doctor’s visit (my husband had to go to work after) because I was so sad about my entire birth plan being thrown out the window.
My hope to have a natural birth with no anesthesia? HA! Well, for a surgery, a MAJOR SURGERY, best believe, you will be anesthetized. Laboring in water? Welllll…you can only labor in water if you go into labor (I did not). I was terrrrrrified of tearing, but hey! I wouldn’t need an episiotomy because I would have a gaping cut across my uterus. I was working so hard late into my pregnancy to make my D-Day a breeze. I watched countless birthing videos on Instagram. I was doing my research. And then it was all for naught.
Husband and I after 6 hours of waiting, which I would joke was worst than labor, but again, I did not labor (and I know moms would probably slay me for such a horrible joke)
DISCLAIMER: I am totally happy I did not fight the doctor because their projection, their estimated birth weight for my baby boy, was WRONG. He was not 9 lbs, 4 oz. He was a WHOPPING TEN POUNDS AND SIX OUNCES. You read that right. One of my aunt’s told my mom she got the numbers backwards. The nurses had to find bigger diapers and baby hats because the normal newborn sizes didn’t fit. Who would’ve thought?! Of the weight I gained, it was 37% baby! So I needed the c-section because had I not gone through with it, both baby and I could’ve died on that hospital bed (which was my husband’s biggest fear).
Everything changed and/or went out the window. My post-partum care was completely different. The Tucks cooling wipes for my hoohah were not needed. The giant pads helped, but the hospital grade underwear pad combo was much better. All my training (mostly mentally) to be one of those warrior women who gives birth and then carries on in life almost normal was pointless as I hobbled from the wheelchair to the backseat of my car hunched over like a 176 year old lady.
Postpartum cesarean tip #1: STAND UP STRAIGHT! It hurts, but its necessary.
Anyway, so fun fact: your first baby tends to be your smallest. #TrueStory So now, I am pretty much destined to have big babies and with that, a c-section for each baby. Yes, I could probably try to have a VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean), but the c-section was so NOT what I was expecting (more on that later). Let’s just say that if you’re expecting hell, and you simply get cut open and mild to moderate discomfort, it is a blessing.
So there you have it mama, make your birth plan! Take ownership of your birth, but guess what? It is not your birth. It is your sweet baby’s who can throw such a huge marvelous wrench in your plans but you won’t even care once they place that baby in your arms.
Even nurses came to see the big baby (or King baby as my husband says)