I’ve mentioned it here previously that I wanted to give birth at a birthing center. I like the fact that their C-Section rate is almost nonexistent, and their use of drug interventions is also very low. I like the fact that it’s not run by OBs and it’s not in a hospital setting. But, as the nearest birthing center is an hour and a half from our home (and my work), I was over ruled on the birthing center. I’m disappointed, but not really devastated by this. I like the OB that I’m seeing now. He’s very nice and personable and agrees with me that the goal for him and me is a natural, vaginal birth. Despite my good feelings about my doctor, I’m still a little wary of a hospital birth. I’ve read mixed reviews online about the hospital I’ll be delivering in. Some say the nurses are awesome and others say that they congregate at the nurses station and don’t pay attention to their patients. I’m also afraid of being hooked up to drugs that I don’t want to be hooked up to – like pitocin. So, to combat all of my fears, I’ve formed a general outline of a game plan. I realize that things can always go wrong, this is why it’s listed as a general game plan and not “The” game plan.
First on the list is to hire a doula. She will help me create a birth plan during prenatal visits, and be on-call for me the two weeks before and after my due date. When I do finally go into labor, she will come to my home and help me through the early stages of labor. She will recommend positions and techniques that will help me to become more comfortable, provide counter pressure if needed and be a calm and relaxing influence to J and me. She will also come with us to the hospital and act as an advocate for J and me and also help my labor to be as smooth and comfortable as possible. The specific doula that I’m looking at is also a breast feeding coach and will help me with breast feeding and come to my house a few days after the birth to make sure that everything is going smoothly.
Second on my “plan” is to labor at home for as long as I possibly can and only go to the hospital once I’ve reached active labor – and a doula can help to tell me when we need to pack up and go to the hospital. I’ve read that many women go to the hospital too early. It’s possible that if a woman goes to the hospital before active labor has begun that her labor could slow down or stop completely – then causing the hospital staff to use drug interventions to speed things along and get things back on track. This is much less likely to happen if she waits for active labor to start. Therefore I’m going to tough it out at home for as long as humanly possible.
Third is to work really hard on not being tied to a bed or an IV pole. I like the idea of walking and moving around during labor (let gravity help!). I really want to bounce on a birthing ball too. I also don’t want to push with me being flat on my back on a hospital bed. I’d rather be squatting or kneeling so that gravity can help. I’ve also read that if you’re kneeling or squatting that you’ll be less likely to tear, and I have to say that the only thing I’m afraid of about birth is tearing. I’m pretty sure that I can deal with pain, or find a way to cope. But I really do NOT want to have my whoo-ha stitched back together – that is terrifying to me!
This is pretty much as far as I’ve been able to go on my plan. I’m still thinking and reading and will add more to it as it comes to me. But I also don’t want to get too detailed or hung up on semantics because you never know what’s going to happen during a birth and I’d like to be able to go with the flow as much as possible without being upset that my “plan” didn’t happen like I wanted it to.