A Birth Plan or Lack Thereof

A birth plan doesn't have to be complicated.

On Sunday we went to Hypnobirthing Class #2. This class was a bit different from the first and focused on more traditional birth education. We began the class by watching a video that walked through the different stages of labor and discussed creating a birth plan. The instructor had a great way of explaining that instead of coming up with a birth plan it’s better to come up with what your birth preferences are. After all, the nature of birth is that things happen and change.

I like that idea. When you think about a plan, then you think about not being on plan. Kind of like dieting. My friend Annie brought up a good point about birth plans – when we invest so much in them that nothing seems good enough if everything doesn’t go just as we had planned, we set ourselves up for disappointment.

More and more I think it’s important to research your options. After all, if you don’t know your options, you don’t have options. The most important thing to me is having choice – not being swayed into one situation or another, but choosing what I feel is best for our baby, my body and my husband.

Then when you are faced with a changing birth plan, you know what each intervention means – the ramifications, benefits, and possible outcomes.

So while I think about what my preferences are, I’m aware that until I’m in that situation (having never done it before), I won’t necessarily know what I like or don’t like, can or cannot handle, want or do not want. I can envision the day, practice my hypnobirthing techniques, surround myself with supportive, like-minded people and read until my brain is at capacity, but no plan will ever truly prepare me for this experience.

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