It's been in my mind off and on that because I'm not able to have the birthing center/home water birth I would like to have I'm going to be less present for the birth of my baby. In fact, I've run across women who treat the c-section like it's a form of infanticide (I've also run across women who view formula and circumcision as infanticide.)
And then Mothering, in honor of Attachment Parenting month, posted up THIS article, written by a mom after my own (soon-to-be-mommy) heart, who had a scheduled c-section and lived to talk about it.
So I think that having a clear, well researched birth plan is what it's going to take to set me at ease. Our family is not able to make it out until several days after the birth (in some cases weeks and months)so I'm looking into having a doula present and we'll also have the illustrious Kelly M doing our birth day photography.
Today I did some research and asked around and put together a preliminary birth plan. Here it is:
(format and some wording borrowed from a very helpful friend on one of the mommy boards I frequent)
To my Health Care Providers: Thank you so much for what you are about to do for us. Today parents, as well as a child, are being born. Because we will both be emotional (and Emily will most likely be nauseous) we have taken the time to research, discuss, and create a birth plan for guidance. Because this is a planned c-section, there should be no surprises, and we would both like to be as aware and present as possible at every stage. For your respect and care, we will be forever grateful.
*I would like to have my husband (Stephen) and doula with me at all times, even for procedures and administration of anesthesia.
*Because our family cannot be in town until several days after the birth, it is very important to me that my photographer, Kelly, be allowed as much access as possible.
*If possible I would like to have my music played.
*My arms are not to be strapped down unless general anesthesia becomes necessary during an emergency.
*Please let me know before start any procedure or administer any medication. Anesthesia
*I would like to have use of my arms during the procedure, please administer blocks accordingly.
*Please give me medications to help prevent nausea and vomiting.
*Please do not administer mind-altering drugs. I do not wish to be less alert due to sedation. If it becomes necessary to sedate me, do not do so without express permission from either myself or Stephen.
*I would like the catheter put in after anesthesia is administered.
During the Procedure
*If my baby needs assistance during the delivery process, please use a vacuum.
*We would like to wait 1-3 minutes for the umbilical cord to be clamped. (We are donating the remaining cord blood to a public bank, please do not discard it.)
*If at all possible we would like that Stephen be able to cut the cord.
*I would like to see the baby immediately after birth. I prefer that he be placed on my chest rather than the warming tray. If my chest is unavailable for medical reasons, then please have my husband disrobe and hold the baby to his own chest.
*I prefer that the outside incision be sutured with stitches and not staples.
*It is ideal that Sebastian be with Stephen or myself at all times.
*We do not wish to do the eye ointment, the Hep B vaccine, or other immunizations and will sign a waiver.
*Please apply a topical anesthetic to our son before sticking him with any needles.
*Stephen has Gilbert’s disease, which can cause jaundice. Please be aware that this may be an issue for Sebastian. Do not proceed with any treatment without express permission from myself or Stephen.
*We would like to give our son his first bath. Please do not bathe our baby.
*Our son is to be exclusively breast-fed. Please do not offer my baby formula, pacifier, artificial nipple or sugar water without my consent.
*Please do not circumcise our son.
*All tests and procedures are to be done in the presence of Stephen and/or Emily, and with our expressed consent, including any emergency situation.
Emily’s Post-Op & Recovery
*I would like to have contact with the baby as soon as it is possible in the delivery room.
*I would like my doula to remain with me at all times during the recovery.
*I request to recover in a Labor & Delivery Room so that I can have my baby immediately and have my husband and doula with me.
*I would like the catheter removed as soon as possible.
*I wish to have the baby with me in recovery so that I can breast-feed.
*We would like our baby to room in with us. Any procedures or pediatric checks can be done in our room.