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My birth plan | Do births ever really go to plan?

So, a couple of weeks ago I visited my midwife for my 36 week check and to think about and write up my ‘birth plan’.

Now, having done this labour thing once before I sort of laughed at the idea of having a ‘plan’ (just to bring you up to date – my first labour, three years ago, went something like this – you can read the gory details here;  One Born Every Minute – The Labour Story.

According to my Google search, the definition of ‘plan’ = a detailed proposal for doing or achieving something / an intention or decision about what one is going to do.

So, the only plan I have is to give birth as quickly and painfree as possible. This time round I’m at a different hospital (through choice) so I’m off to the Princess Anne Hospital in Southampton, unless I give birth in the car enroute.

I’m booked to go to the midwifery-led Broadlands unit with the knowledge that Labour ward is one lift below should things start to get hairy (and I’m not just talking my nether regions that I haven’t seen in about five months). The offer of going to a birth centre was ruled out by me, though I’m hoping that all will go to plan I’m really not relaxed enough to take the risk ‘just incase’.

I know that;
* I don’t want a water birth
* I dont want slushy romantic songs in the background
* I couldn’t give two hoots about mood lighting – no level of ambience is going to take away from the fact that my vagina/my fairy/my foof will be stretching to the size of a Dairylea triangle packet as a pair of shoulders twist and turn their way out of their new found escape route.
* I do want to use my TENS machine – last time, I liked having something to concentrate on and focus on when pains became stronger
* I’d like to try gas and air (entinox to use the proper word) again – I really felt like it regulated my breathing and gave me a focus
* I’d rather not have an epidural (but, never say never)
* After having the oxytocin drip with Sofia I was a bit limited and gave birth lying down so, if possible, this time I’d like to stay as mobile for as long as possible
* I’d like baby to have the Vitamin K injection
* I’d like delayed cord clamping
* Quick rub off with towel then baby handed to me…but
* I can confidently state this time, that I will be formula feeding baby from feed #1 so although I’d like to do skin to skin I do not want to feel the pressure to breastfeed. This really threw me with my first when I wasn’t confident enough to tell them that baby ‘crawling’ to my oversized burger nipple wasn’t quite what I had planned (read ‘Breast is best…right?)
* However, everything listed above will fade into insignificance if there is any slight risk to baby or myself and then it’s all to be left in the doctors hands
* I’ve also opted to stay in overnight, we’re due to move house on 15th March and baby is due on 23rd March so I feel like the house could be in utter disarray and not where I’d like to return home six hours post-delivery! I also don’t feel like six hours post-delivery (when you can leave if you wish) is enough time to assess both myself and babies health and immediate well-being.

So, my advice to all soon-to-be mums, perhaps think about the type of birth & drugs you may want…but don’t set your heart on any of it.

After all, labour can change the very best of birth plan intentions.

I look forward to updating you on my super quick, super pain and drug free labour soon!

Are you struggling with your birth plan? Babycentre have put together a useful guide to help you prepare for the birth – you can read this here.