The bigger the bump gets the more strangers have no problem coming right up and asking questions. The curiosity level is rising, the boundary lines are even more erased and everyone wants up in my bump business. Just the other day, the man who was bagging my groceries, skipped right over the basic “What are you having?” question and went straight to the “Are you getting an epidural?” question. Then proceeded to tell me about the birth of his two daughters. The poor cashier lady, all of 18, was so red in the face for me.
A male rep came in the other day and asked if I was going to breastfeed.
A friends neighbor asked me how much my boobs have grown.
A stranger at Kohl’s asked me if I had my birth plan ready.
Someone at the gym asked how much weight I’ve gained.
A random relative asked if we were doing anything with the placenta afterwards.
Basically what I’m saying is no where is safe for me. All eyes go straight to my bump and I can see the wheels start turning in their head. The question starts forming on their lips and I just want to run.
The main question I am constantly getting though is the birth plan question. I never dreamed so many people would have concern over my vagina and what may or may not exit from it and in what form.
I have coached friends through their births. I have had friends do home births, hypno-birth, elective c-sections, emergency c-sections, water births, births in parking lots of the hospital, natural births and everything in between. I have seen friends with no birth plan or a large binder full of every detail for their birth plan. Not a one of these things is wrong either.
Our hospital provides us with a couple of pages of basic questions: Do you want an epidural? Does your husband want to cut the cord? Do you want pitocin? Etc, etc, etc. We have sat as a couple and filled these out. I’m sure they will change a bit after our birthing class but as of right now, this is all my birth plan is. The Husband and I have had several conversations about what we (more me) are aiming for. I know what is coming, I know what birth entails. I know the pros and cons of getting an epidural, an induction, a c-section and so forth. I’m educated but haven’t sent myself over the edge on research. I have no strict idea of what I want aside from a healthy baby and the safest delivery possible. I know I want drugs if I get to the point where I can’t take the pain, I am not trying to be a hero. I have faith in my Hospital, our perinatologist, my doctor and her team.
I do not have a binder or book of my birth plan, just the sheets filled out. Mainly because I feel like that would give me anxiety. I cannot come up with an answer to every possible outcome. Some may see that as naive but to me that is what works best. I obviously don’t want a c-section but if in the moment that is what has to happen then it will happen. I don’t want to be induced but if I’m walking around 12 months pregnant, someone fucking reach up there and pull the baby out. I don’t want to have a baby on the side of the road but we live 40 minutes from the hospital and there is hella lot of construction happening right now. How does one write “construction” properly in a birth plan? You can see how quickly my brain spirals out of control and I think “You know what, lets wing it.” I know, some of you just gasped audibly.
Just like parenting and your pregnancy, what you want for your birth is completely up to you as a woman. BUT I can tell you that every woman can go in with an idea of what they would like their birth to be but at the end of the day, your baby and God have a funny way of running the show. Every birth story I have been told from neighbors and beyond has always ended up with “Not the way we planned but the baby got here.” And that is the only thing you can plan on because no one has remained pregnant forever. And lets all take a moment to thank God for that!
What is your birth plan?