Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Birth Plan: Uh, Just Whatever...

Birth Plan: Sure. As in, I plan on giving birth. That's about as far as I have planned. You could call my birth plan "flexible." If you don't carry the "high-risk" label into your pregnancy, maybe it is easier to have strong opinions on birth plans. Also, if you are in the medical field and have a unique experience or exposure to all sorts of literature, perhaps you have developed rather staunch opinions on your birth plan.

I'll tell you one thing: I love modern medicine. I thank my lucky stars every day for the insulin pen, continuous glucose monitors and medical research. When it comes to Baby P, I am results-oriented rather than process-oriented. If you deliver a healthy baby to a healthy mama, I'll count it is a blessing and you'll probably go down in history as my favorite person on Earth. Though I do pride myself on a high pain tolerance, I have rarely chosen the pain that I have tolerated. If given the option between more pain or less pain, I'm pretty good with the idea of less pain. I'm not worried that an epidural will shortchange my experience. In fact, I am hoping it will enhance my experience.

But get this, all of that could fly out of the window if I am told that I need an unplanned C-Section. It happens all the time, and I won't give a rip what I wrote down in the "Birth Plan" documents because someone more educated than I am on the matter has decided the safest route to bringing Baby P into the world while mitigating harm her mom, is through surgery. I'm cool with that as well.

Understandably, it is ideal when your body goes into labor by itself. As much as I could choose to obsess over this desire, I was told up-front that, if I don't go into labor on my own, my baby will likely be induced in Week 38 or Week 39. That means that Doc and I pick a date on the calendar and trick my body into thinking it's go-time. I've heard this has drawbacks, but if the general consensus among Maternal-Fetal Medicine doctors is that Type 1 moms ought not go to 40 weeks, then I don't want any part of going to 40 weeks.

I know there are many other details involved in Birth Plans including who is in the room, what to do with cord blood, etc. I'll look into those, I promise. My point is this: I am glad we live in a society where women can weigh in on their preferences for the Big Day. The truth is that I just don't come to the table with a lot of preferences. Perhaps that is because I know I have to plan for the unplanned, but I have much less anxiety about the whole process because I am comfortable placing trust in my medical staff. I don't even mind hospitals. I'm going to have people regulating my blood sugar for me - that'll be a nice brain vacation! At the end of the day, when Lucas and I are in the car with Baby P and heading home, the last thing on my mind will be how close I came to my original Birth Plan. So, heretofore, I would like to announce that my Birth Plan has been unplanned. If that offends your sensibilities, I do apologize. Right now, it is my warmest security blanket.

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