I have never written a birth plan. How can you even do such a thing when birth is so unpredictable!? I mean, even when I HAD a plan, things never went the way I expected them to, so I always kind of felt that moms who wrote birth plans and passed them out as they were wheeled into the L&D just felt the need to have control over every. little. thing.
But now I’m writing one.
Why a change of heart? Well, after four very different births, none of them anything like what I had envisioned, I am tired of feeling out of control when I’m wheeled into the L&D. So, to those moms who have a binder of requests, I feel you. I feel you so much.
As a mom to four monsters, with another trying to make an early appearance, I’ve had my share of experiences in the L&D. For my first, I followed pretty much every generic hospital list you find on the web. I ended up not using half of it and leaving with even more. Baby number two was a little bit better, but I was still worried about not being prepared. I don’t even remember who packed a bag for baby number three, who was supposed to be a home birth but after 36 hours of labor I ended up at a nearby hospital. Baby number four was an emergency c-section so I was totally unprepared for her. Now with baby number five on the way I am determined to get it just right!
For years I have been adamant about home-birthing. I sincerely believe that having a home birth or birthing in a Birth Center is a beautiful, safe process for both mom and baby, when their risks are low. Hospitals are places for the sick and healing, not for bringing in life. However, there are special circumstances that call for a baby to be brought into the world in a hospital. Our daughter, Evelynn, was one of those special cases. On Sunday, November 17th, I had some moderately painful contractions for several hours, but I was able to stop them on my own with hydration and position changes. I didn’t feel quite right for the next few days and on Wednesday I called my midwife, who made a home visit to check to see if I was dilating. I wasn’t, but she wanted to run some labs to make sure the contractions and still present pain weren’t anything else. The next day I went to a lab but had issues and wasn’t able to submit a sample. By that evening I was in so much pain I made a trip the ER. They said I had an infection, gave me a prescription and sent me home. I took antibiotics for almost 48 hours while my symptoms got worse and finally I had more complications and ended up in the ER again on Saturday. This was the same hospital I was in two days before, yet they weren’t able to do much for me while they waited for results from more tests. Since I was a bit more dilated than before, they admitted me to Labor and Delivery and gave me rounds of IV antibiotics and fluids. However, they refused to give me tylenol because they wanted to “keep an eye” on my fever (which reached 103 F during my stay) and several nurses decided this was the perfect time to talk to me about the dangers of having a midwife, how my infection could hurt the baby, etc. Continue reading →