Sunday, March 22, 2009

Birth Plan

I've been mulling around a birth plan for this upcoming birth. It is difficult for me to go back and make changes to the birth plan that I made for Daphne. I just happened to spend a lot of time writing up desires about the birth if I were to transfer and need a c-section. It was a good thing that I was prepared, but it was still a little tough for me to confront writing out what I would want to happen if it were necessary for another C-Section.

I think that I have hammered out enough of the birth plan to call this a great 1st draft. Things can change in pregnancy, but this reflects what I am looking for in birth. I am posting it here because I shared my first birth plan with a lot of friends who found it to be immensely helpful in planning their own births.

Christine Anderson

Birth Plan


I plan to have a water birth at the Portland Andaluz birth center. This is going to be a VBAC. If transferring is necessary, I would like to transfer to OHSU, and only in the case of emergency.

I desire a pretty standard natural birth, but I have been specific in the birth plan to be clear to anyone attending the birth.


I plan to have a doula for support who will also act as a photographer for the birth.

I really would like my 2 year old daughter to experience the birth. She will be taken care of by my doula and by my husband Jared.

I feel that I will get enough support from the Andaluz midwives, so I desire that no family or guests attend the birth. If anyone shows up at the birth center they should be told to return home and wait for communication from my husband or myself.

Anyone who is allowed in the room needs to be reminded that we want silence during contractions and the delivery because of our religious beliefs.


If it is available, I prefer the Tierra room. If it is not available, the Solona room is my second choice.


I am eager to stay at home as long as possible during the labor. I am hoping to drive to the birth center when I am around 6 centimeters dilated.

I do not want any music to be playing during labor or delivery. I do have some music on my Ipod that I will listen to if the music strikes me.

I plan to be mobile during labor and to eat and drink at will.

We are eager to maintain silence during contractions for religious reasons.


I plan to have a water birth, however, if I need assistance in pushing, I would like to try squatting on dry land.

I would like silence maintained during the delivery of the baby if this is possible. Gentle encouragement is also important to me.

I would like Jared to catch the baby with the help and guidance of the midwife, but with minimal intervention unless it is an emergency.

I would like the lighting as low as possible when my baby is born.

When my baby is born, please pass him or her straight to me unless there is an emergency. The first few moments of bonding are important to me without logistical interruption.

When the baby is born, I would prefer that the room stay silent and calm for a while. It is especially important do not want any comments about the sex or the state of health of the baby announced. If there is any concern, it should be directed to me personally.

Third Stage

I plan to have a natural third stage, and to allow the placenta to turn up in its own time. I would like the cord to stop pulsing before it is cut.

Drugs/Pain Relief

Under no circumstances do I want any drug administered to my baby or I without my express permission. Permission should be asked before EACH drug is administered. I feel very strongly that no drugs should be used for any reason unless in an absolute emergency.

Care of the baby

I do not want the baby to be taken away from me after the birth. Weighing, cleaning and other logistics can be done at a convenient time after bonding and breastfeeding have been established.

Please do not administer a Vitamin K injection to the baby. We plan to use the non-synthetic oral Vitamin K.

Please do not administer eye prophylaxis to my baby after birth.

We would like to do the newborn screening tests as two tests, the first occurring before we leave the birth center.

If the baby is a male we do not plan to circumcise.

Care of the mom

I am concerned about tearing. I would like the degree of any tear to be discussed with me so that we can decide the best solution. At this time, I think that I would desire stitches with any significant tearing.

In case of transfer to hospital or for C-Section

I desire a labor and delivery that is as free from medication and other interventions as possible. Please discuss any suggested interventions or procedures with me and obtain my consent for proceeding.

I am very keen to avoid another caesarean section if it is at all possible. I feel strongly that I can have a successful VBAC.

If there are strong indications of fetal distress or infection, I would like this fully examined before there is a decision to transfer or cut.

If the baby is found to be a surprise breech, I do not consider this to be an indication for a caesarean.

I do understand there are true emergencies such as a prolapsed cord that are automatic indications for a caesarean.

I would like a midwife to stay with me during the transfer to help advocate for me. I understand that midwives do not have hospital privileges and are thus acting as personal advisors and not medical professionals in the hospital.

I want to ensure that no drugs are administered to my baby or I without my express permission beforehand, even if they are standardly administered drugs.

I do not wish to have any drug in the benzodiazepine class even in a life saving emergency.

In the event of a C-Section I do not want to be put to sleep, I want the surgery to be done with an epidural only if possible.

I would like my husband to be in the room at all times during the surgery. If it is an emergency, I respect that the surgeons will need their space, but I still prefer that my husband be allowed at least to stay in the room, even if only in a corner that is out of the way.

I would like my wishes regarding silence (including music) to be respected during surgery. I know that some coordination is necessary between the surgeons, but this should be as succinct as possible.

When the baby is born, I would like for no announcements to be made about the state of health or the sex. If there is an emergency, the baby should be attended to in silence (except for the communications necessary to administer medical attention).

When the baby is born, I would like it to be handed to my husband for care.

I would like to breastfeed the baby in the recovery room if possible.

Please do not admit my baby to special care simply for observation, but only if there is an emergent medical concern.

Please do not give my baby supplements of glucose water or formula milk without my permission.

Please do not give my baby a pacifier for any reason.

If I have trouble breastfeeding, I would greatly appreciate the help of a midwife who is fully supportive of breastfeeding, and would not like other interventions or solutions until it is clear that breastfeeding will be impossible.

Going Home

I would like to go home as soon after the birth or surgery as possible, unless I, or my baby, have health problems that require hospital treatment.

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