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PAIL Monthly Theme Post – The Impact of Birth

October 29, 2013

October’s monthly theme post over at PAIL is on how past birth experiences have or will affect your future birth plans, and also about how it has impacted your parenting style. Since I’m over a year into being a parent and just about half way though this pregnancy and starting to think about the end game, it seemed like rather timely topic!

THE BIRTH PLAN

My game plan for delivering Molly was to go with the flow and be open to just about everything. We definitely had some hopes in mind for how things would go but researched all possibilities and knew what each type of intervention involved in case we were faced with those choices.

As a result of that attitude, labour with Molly was just fine. I have no negative feelings about it whatsoever and though I would have preferred a shorter experience (40 hours, ugh), I actually think it went rather well. It was important for me to feel in control and the only time that wasn’t the case was when my contractions were coming one on top of the other and I couldn’t breathe or think. Despite hoping to avoid pain intervention, making the decision to get the epidural was the best thing for me in the end. I was able to rest and refocus and prepare myself for pushing, which according to the doctor I did rather well.

Since my attitude about it hasn’t changed, I’ll be heading into labour with this little one with the same plan: there is no real plan. We will go with the flow and make decisions as we go. I’d prefer as few interventions as possible, but will not be upset with myself if I need pain management or make a choice I hadn’t planned on making.

THE BIRTH VENUE

I delivered Molly at the hospital my OB is associated with and couldn’t have been happier with my experience. As a result, this baby will be delivered at the same location. We had the same room (private) for labour, delivery and post-delivery care. The staff were great! I never felt any pressure to have pain medication. When we first arrived when in labour with Molly, they asked what my plans were for pain management and I said I wanted to go natural if possible. Nothing else was said afterwards! I had to ask for the pain meds I received. My nurses were amazing, keeping me informed and answering any questions I had (not many; I’m not one to ask for help). And yet they left us pretty much alone, which I appreciated. Same with the doctors who actually delivered her (there were two and I have no idea what their names are; that doesn’t bother me either). When I needed an episiotomy to speed up delivery, they explained why (Molly’s heart rate was dropping as I pushed) and I made the decision to go ahead with it (and I’m glad I did…the cord was wrapped around her neck!). I felt in charge of my experience there.

THE BIRTH SPECTATORS

We made the choice to only have A in the room with me, aside from medical staff, during my labour and delivery with Molly (well I made the choice. A had no choice. He would be there and will be again). We saw our parents in the waiting area before we were checked in and that’s the last time I saw any of our family until after Molly was born. A of course would pop out to keep them updated, but I wanted a quiet experience to focus. No one came to see us until about an hour or so after she was born. I required stitches and wanted the time to start nursing. It worked out really well, so we’ll do the same with this one. Even if my sister tries to bribe the staff again 🙂

AFTER THE BIRTH

Here’s what I’ve discovered about being a parent: it’s all about going with the flow. You can’t be rigid in your parenting style or you’ll be endlessly frustrated. Every child is different. Every situation unique. What might work one day might be a disaster the next.
I wasn’t scared for Molly’s birth but I didn’t like that I didn’t know how it would happen. I’m very much a planner and like to be in control. But it did help prepare me for the chaos that is mothering. I research my options ahead of time and choose the one that works best for us at the moment, just as I did when preparing for birth. Just as there are any number of options for delivering a baby, so there are for raising that baby. It’s about doing what’s right for you and your family and not looking back in regret. If something doesn’t work or the wrong choice is made, just learn from it and move forward.

I wish everyone who will be having babies in the near future the birth story that they want!

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 29, 2013 8:29 pm

    I felt the same way about the timliness of this topic 😉

    The fact that I don’t know how *this* pregnancy/labor will go is starting to drive me nuts as I near viability. I have some medical people/some friends/some family telling me to be prepared for all the things that happend with G’s pregnancy/birth and I have my midwives/other friends/other family telling me to go with the flow. I’m a planner and want to be prepared for the worst, so the later can get me frustrated sometimes.

  2. October 30, 2013 9:44 pm

    I feel like I could have written this 🙂
    Minus baby #2 already being on board!

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