The Birth Plan
Check out 28 weeks in the same shirt. Does my belly seem that much bigger now?
Had my blood tested again and even though I’ve been taking an iron supplement for the past three weeks, my iron has dropped from 23 to 13 ug/L. So I’m now iron deficient, although my hemoglobin isn’t under 110 g/L, so according to BC Guidelines, I’m not quite anemic. That mid-afternoon fatigue is still crushing me, and I’m pretty sure now that it has to do with my iron being so low. Steak and spinach salad on the menu tonight…?
The baby countdown is ON. Six weeks to the due date? Hold a sec, I’m going to blink now and have a baby in my arms. Oh yes look here he is and he’s adorable!
Depending on what I’m considering, six weeks is either not enough time or feels like an eternity. EVERYTHING is more difficult. And not just little things. Walking, showering, moving, BREATHING. This belly is heavy and awkward. It’s like having a 10-pound bag of sugar strapped to your mid-section. Squiggly alien sugar. Gawd this kid moves a lot. I’m grabbing feet and elbows and tapping on his bum. Being pregnant is awesome…and really kind of annoying sometimes, like when he decides to flail about at 4 in the morning. Sometimes I’m like, jeez how am I going to do this late April? Get him out! Sometimes I’m all, omg no I’m so not ready for this! Can someone put the brakes on the time for me please? Too many things still to do. Most of them are just not going to get done. In all honesty though, I’m not really freaking out about it. It’s more the “tiny living breathing fragile human being” I’ll be responsible for that’s freaky.
So. Birth plan. We are planning for a home birth. Which means a few obvious things: I can wear whatever I want, walk when I want, shower when I want, eat and drink when I want. I can move into any position I feel comfortable in at any time. I can do yoga. I can listen to music. I can dance this baby out. Having a home birth means you get to do a lot of things YOUR way. And that is absolutely the WAY for ME.
There are also a few things that can’t and won’t happen because we are having a home birth, and that’s because I don’t want them even available to me unless I need them. These of course include pain and induction medication, constant fetal monitoring, IV, and other medical services/assistance that aren’t necessary until the situation calls for them. The values of the midwifery standard of care are smack in line with my own and thank the heavens I live in a place where these values are upheld and defended by my primary caregivers. We are so blessed.
I need to be comfortable for this to be the experience I want it to be. Hospitals are not comfortable. Hospitals are for people who are sick or injured. It seems a bit weird to me that it’s normal to go to a hospital for an event that is totally natural. Birthing centres within hospitals seems like a great idea—many of the comforts of home with the safety of a doctor and medical services immediately available if needed. But even though I’m 40, I’m healthy and baby is too, so my pregnancy is considered low-risk and I’m okay to give it a go at home. If we end up transferring to the hospital, it’ll be because I NEED medical intervention that is beyond the scope of the midwives, and that’s just fine with me. Otherwise, I see no need to be there.
I’m contemplating a water birth but not feeling a strong pull for it, so I’m not sure yet. Here are some of my birth preferences/requirements.
- Baby Nixon will be put on my chest, skin to skin, immediately. And he will stay there for a while.
- We will delay cord clamping until it has stopped pulsing.
- We will not bathe baby until the next day.
- We will give baby oral vitamin K, rather than a shot.
- My midwife will come to the house two days after birth to do the heel-prick screen, while baby is breastfeeding and relaxed, not immediately after birth when he’s going to be adjusting to his new life.
OMG I might even try placenta encapsulation after the birth. (Here’s a good read, with PICTURES.) Yep, that means EATING my placenta. *shudder* I had no plans to do this, but after all the research I’ve done, I think the benefits are incredibly valuable, and there are no risks, so why not? Because it sounds gross? Don’t be silly.
What is plan B? Well there really can’t be a plan B. Plan B is if something goes awry and we go to the hospital, in which case some decisions will be made at the time and my midwife will make sure that nothing happens that I do not want or need. But I’ve set the intention for a quick, pain-less, home birth. Yes, I said pain-less. No snickering, ladies! Next week I’ll write about how I intend to birth with as little pain as possible.