Thanks everyone for your patience while I was away on holiday in the USA. I had planned to run a blog for Mummy Mondays while I was away, but it just did not work out and I encountered a few internet issues. But the good news is that I’m back in full swing and I have a wonderful post for you today by Lizzie Carroll as part of my ‘How To’ series. Lizzie is a Cairns based Hypnobirthing Australia Certified Practitioner, childbirth doula, writer and mum.
Steps to writing your own birth plan
Birth planning is something that I am extremely passionate about. But there are so many myths surrounding birth planning. I am often told “Oh, I don’t need a birth plan – my midwife knows what I want” or “I can’t write a birth plan – I’ve never given birth before so I’ll leave it all to the experts” or even “Why write a birth plan – you’ll just be disappointed”.
I’m here to tell you that you CAN write a birth plan! One that will be honoured and will leave you feeling positive, informed and empowered. Because isn’t that what birth should be about? Positive, informed and empowered women moving into motherhood feeling confident in their abilities to make awesome decisions.
Here’s my step by step guide to writing your own (basic) birth plan.
Set a birth goal
What sort of birth do you want? How do you want to feel? Who would you like to have there? What will they say and do? What will be the first thing your baby sees / hears when they are born?
Have a very open chat with your care provider
You need to make sure your care provider is on the same page. Ask them how they will help you achieve your goal. Ask them what their “routine procedures” are so that you can research them and make an informed decision as to whether these will help you achieve your goal.
Get a doula
Or at least a one-off consult. A doula can help you sort all your information and options out so that you can come up with a clear vision of how you are going to achieve your birth goals. So many women just aren’t aware of ALL their options. A doula can help you suss them out.
Make sure you put your birth plan in writing. Be succinct. A basic template for your birth plan could be:
A short paragraph outlining your birth goal and thanking your care providers for helping you achieve your goal.
Important points to consider: Pain relief options, mobility, vaginal exams, monitoring of baby and augmentation.
Important points to consider: Note if you don’t want coached or “purple” pushing, mobility and freedom of positioning, episiotomy or tearing or techniques you plan to use to reduce tearing and who will catch the baby.
Third stage and immediate postpartum:
Important points to consider: Physiological or managed third stage, delayed cord clamping, who will cut the cord, baby to be placed on mums chest, newborn observations to be completed while bub is on mum, maintaining the environment, Vitamin K and Hep B shots and if your baby will be breastfed.
And because, as so many people point out to me, birth is unpredictable and sometimes doesn’t go to plan I encourage women to consider their plans B, C and D! It is a great idea to have a plan in mind and a few notes written down for: In case of an induction and in case of a caesarean.
Remember that birth planning isn’t about having a hard and fast plan that can’t be changed – it’s about learning all your options and how to make the decisions that work best for you. Women who have a birth plan are often better able to cope with deviations as they have become well practised in the art of making an informed decision and expressing their desires. So what are you waiting for – get to planning your positive birth!
Mummy Mondays Link Up
Welcome back! Link up one of your favourite posts from the past week and check out some of the other lovely blogs. Your post doesn’t have to be on parenting, it can be on pretty much anything that women would enjoy!
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Latest posts by Lizzie Carroll (see all)
- How To Care For Your Emotional Wellbeing During Pregnancy - April 11, 2016
- How to Support a Friend Following Their Traumatic Birth #MummyMondays - March 7, 2016
- How To Make An Informed Decision For Your Birth - February 18, 2016