After reading most of the pregnancy books I bought, I knew it was time to sit down and write out my birth plan. It seemed like work to me since it just meant writing down everything I already knew, but I am glad to have my desires written down for others to see. Plus, I know I won’t remember all of it when that time comes. Especially if for some reason we need to go to the hospital. Whether the hospital staff will follow my birth plan or not, I put that in God’s hands, but at least they will be informed of my desires.
The book that helped me the most in writing my birth plan is The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Child Care by Sally Fallon Morell and Thomas S. Cowan. Check out my Reading page for a list of all the books I’ve read and recommend.
Goals Of A Birth Plan
One of the hardest things about writing a birth plan is knowing what to include and what isn’t necessary. An excellent birth plan should only be one page in length and should list just your desires and not all the reasons why. You should avoid telling your doctors, midwives, or nurses how to do their job, but rather what you would like or not like as apart of their care for you.
A birth plan should be easy to read and clear about what is meant. And most importantly you and everyone else should understand that it is a plan. That is, it is what you desire to happen, with the understanding that God doesn’t always give us what we desire. Don’t get me wrong, it is good to think positively about your body and childbirth and to stop thinking about all the things that could go wrong, but we are on the verge of selfishness if we have the attitude that we will not be happy if our birth plan isn’t followed to the “T”.
My Birth Plan
Before writing my birth plan I look at several templates and examples of birth plans before deciding how to format mine. I really enjoyed reading other women’s birth plans and so I thought you may find it helpful to read mine. Here it is:
Birth Plan for Beverly Stauffer
Est. Due Date:
We have been preparing for a natural birth and our intention is to have a natural, non-medicated labor, and an active birth. Our focus will be on relaxation and active movement during labor. We would appreciate minimal interruptions during the labor, to maintain a peaceful atmosphere. XXXXX and XXXXX will be attending the birth as our midwives.
During labor I would prefer:
- Use only of a fetoscope to monitor baby
- To have only midwives and husband always present other than necessary hospital staff
- To not have pain medication encouraged
- No IV stent, except for an emergency
- Freedom to walk around, move, and change positions during labor and to give birth
- Being allowed to eat and drink during labor
- A calm environment: dim lights, quiet or calm music.
- Minimal vaginal exams
During pushing and birth I would prefer:
- Water birth
- Midwives and husband always present
- No induction or breaking of waters, with natural methods of induction tried first unless fetal distress
- No episiotomy, I would like to tear naturally. If I do tear, sew with cat gut not silk
- Allow natural delivery of the placenta, no meds, or pulling on the cord
During C-Section I would prefer:
- To be performed only if mom or baby is in distress
- I would like to be fully informed and to participate in the decision making process if a C-Section is indicated.
- To remain conscious
- Have my uterus sewn with double layering method and with cat gut not silk
Postpartum I would prefer:
- Skin to skin contact of mother and baby immediately after birth for the first hour or more
Wait to clamp and cut the umbilical cord for at least 1 hour after birth even after C-Section
- Leave vernix on baby’s skin (no bath)
- Keep baby in parent’s sight at all times, no separation from baby
- IMPORTANT! No Vitamin K shot, no PKU test, no sugar water, no eye drops, no Hep B vaccination (please write this on baby’s chart), and no circumcision. Please bring me the waivers to sign.
- No artificial nipples, breast fed only.
There you have it! I hope you found my birth plan helpful or at least informative. Each item listed has a very good reason for being included on my birth plan, so if you have questions about any of the items ask it in the comments.