These birth photos by photographer Jamie Street are almost too much for me to look at right now. First of all, what a gorgeous mama and the tenderness that is captured is palpable. Gush. We met with a doula on sunday and she was asking me a lot of questions about my intentions for this birth and my experience with Matilda. I feel like I am a birthing sponge right now. I've been watching "More Business of Being Born" which is awesome and I took an online childbirth class. I am meeting with my midwives this week and our doula again to discuss our birth plan.

When I was pregnant with Matilda my doctor really discouraged me from putting together a "birth plan." She actually told me she didn't like them. While I know that nature is wild and unpredictable, her discouragement made me think I had zero control over the situation. To be asked by my doula to put together a birth plan was so empowering, as if my wishes were to be put in to great consideration. What a thought! I found this checklist online and I'll be using it to help me gather my thoughts.

I'm curious if you had a birth plan and how true you were able to stick to it?

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  1. we had a birth plan and we were able to stick with it! i had a doula and a hospital birth with an on call ob. my doula had been with me since the beginning and i really trusted her. my plan was to have no drugs, no medical intervention what so ever (only in an actual emergency). and it worked. we laboured at home from 12am-9am then we went to the hospital. i just needed to walk all the time. i needed to be moving. i got my waters broken at 7 cm then i got stuck at 9cm. that is when i kind of broke down but my doula saved me she encouraged me. i got to 10 on my own and told the nurses i was pushing. i pushed for 25 min and charlie was out!! i had about an inch os stitches. our doula helped us achieve the exact birth we wanted. it was amazing!

  2. We had a birth plan, and while Declan's birth went pretty smooth, I definitely think the plan set the tone. I had a doula and birthed in a hospital as well. We had taken hypnobabies (but ended up not using it) so we walked in handing out our plan to every nurse in sight, putting a quiet sign on the door... they knew we meant business! The only parts to my plan that weren't followed were the external fetal monitoring (they insisted on the belts) and while I would have loved no IV or heplock, I had written into my plan that I wanted a heplock, because I knew hospital policy. Overall it went really well and we will be doing the same thing next time around. Yes, mother nature will do her own thing, but most likely it is going to be some form of a normal birth. A plan helps to pre-answer any questions that might arise and how you would like things handled, rather than the doctors making that choice for you. Best of luck!!

  3. We had a birth plan, and are pretty much using the same one again, with a couple of small changes! I used midwives at a hospital here in Nashville, and had a pretty stellar experience. I didn't get the completely natural birth I wanted, but I ended up with a healthy baby, and a vaginal birth, which I wouldn't have had, had I stuck with my original doctor and hospital. The birth plan was helpful because it meant all of my midwives/nurses were on the same page, which meant I (or my husband or doula) weren't having to explain my wishes every shift change!! Good luck with the change to the midwives!! I switched with my last birth at 34 weeks, and still believe it was the single best decision I made that entire pregnancy!!

  4. so great to hear that you all has such positive experience using a birth plan! that is so encouraging! thank you for sharing your beautiful stories.

  5. We had a birth plan as well, but unfortunately we weren't able to follow it too closely. My water broke at home and we stayed here for several hours, but I wasn't having contractions. I ended up needing Pitocin to get things going. We birthed at Northside here in Atlanta and I can't say enough good things about the nurses there. We took our birthplan with us, which was all natural, no medications, etc. And although I needed Pit, they really tried to help me stick to it because they knew it was what I wanted. When they wanted to give me another med to get my contractions going, they gave us the time to look it up and we ultimately decided we didn't want it, and they honored that. I think I could have gotten through laboring naturally even with Pit if we'd had a doula, but I just got so exhausted after hours of strong contractions, and being the middle of the night my husband was tired too. Anyhow, I didn't mean to get off on my birth, but I still feel strongly positive about birth plans!! If nothing else, it really helped my hubs & I think about our options and think about our ideal birth. And I was so impressed with how respectful our nurses were with our birthplan. All best on working on yours, it's so exciting!!

  6. I'm 35 weeks and have yet to put finalise my birth plan. However, Im going to keep it very open.
    More focussing on the process of drugs I would like. eg, first I want to opt for water injections, second, gas, third, morphine. Although I would like to aim drug-free, Im taking into consideration what drugs I would like when needed.
    Who will be with me as my support partners.
    and when we would/would not like visitors.

  7. I didn't have a plan with Violet and ended up with an induction/epidural. I did have a plan with Max, and when I refused Pitocin, Northside sent me home (I was 41 weeks pregnant, 3 cm. dilated, and in labor), and I ended up accidentally delivering him at home. So my plan was pretty irrelevant, but I'm glad I had one. The plan this time is to stay put once we're in the hospital. :)

  8. We had a plan and more or less lived it out. My midwife encouraged us to do a three-part plan--preferences for a birth center birth, for a hospital birth, and for if a c-section was necessary. She stressed that while birth is unpredictable, thinking about what was important to us would help us to cope with any unexpected events and make confident decisions. There were several occasions when nurses and the midwife referred to the plan during labor, and knowing they had read and thought about it made me feel really empowered. We used more or less the same plan for #2, but he came so quickly that a lot of it was moot!

  9. My birth plan was to go into the process with a clear head and confidence in my body's ability to birth a baby! Pretty simple, I know :) My yoga practice helped me tremendously both times and just knowing how to breathe and stay focused was invaluable. I delivered with a midwife the first time and a doctor the second time. (Northside then Kennestone, both times with planned epidural.) My second baby was a dream to deliver and came really fast too.

    You will do amazing and there's nothing like introducing siblings to each other for the first time. Matilda's face is going to light up! Have the cameras ready. xo

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