Some women may have scripted an in-depth birth plan. Others may be attempting to keep their options open. No matter your personal approach to planning, all expectant mothers want one similar thing. That is, they want the labour to go well, and for baby to be delivered without complications.
Unfortunately, for many mums, regardless of how you are expecting the birthing process to pan out, there will be a hiccup or two along the way. After all, very rarely do things go exactly to plan.
That being said, this isn’t bad news. Preparing your mind in advance for some bumps in the road will help you keep calm in the event that your labour doesn’t quite go as expected. Rather than worrying over what may be, consider this part of your prenatal prep – a precaution for when baby’s heard your birth plan, but has ideas of their own.
Get yourself informed
When you find out you’re expecting a bumbling bundle of joy, you typically have at least half a year to get to grips with the idea of labour. That doesn’t make it easy, but it can partially prepare you for what’s to come.
During this time, ask questions and get informed. Speak with midwives, with nurses, with your partner. Find out about all the options available to you before, during, and after labour. Read about them, and then ask some more.
Get everything straight in your mind, so that when the time comes, you have the best possible understanding of any medication and interventions. This will help you make informed decisions – should you need to – while eliminating an element of anxiety from the situation.
Birth plans aren’t binding
We all have an ideal idea of our birthing experience, sure we do. But, if you’re adamant about every little detail of your birth plan, there is a good chance that you may feel your labour was unsuccessful.
Birth plans are not the be all and end all. It’s good to have some preferences down in pencil, but do bear in mind that there are countless reasons that could mean your birth plan doesn’t go, well, to plan. Embrace the changes and accept that your baby is making its choices as to how they enter the world and sometimes this is different to how you wanted it to be.
Every birth is different, stay positive through those emotional, trying times, by allowing yourself to be human. Understand that, sometimes, you may have to go with an alternative option because that’s what’s best for you and for your baby.
From premature labour to inductions, breech babies and intertwined twins, there are countless reasons that your birth doesn’t go “according to plan”. Babies rarely behave in the way you expect but with a calm, informed mind, and a flexible birth plan, you can overcome almost anything.