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Fail to Plan and You Plan to Fail

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When I decided to become a single mom, I planned everything out clearly.  My father always taught me that when you fail to plan you plan to fail.

I have all intentions on being a good mom.  I know kids don't come with a manual, but in the areas that I do have some control, I'm on it :)

For starter I have a Birthing plan.  I have wonderful family and friends to be with me on delivery day and throughout my child's life, but lets start from the beginning, shall we?

Desi's Birthing Plan

NOTE: Please don't be offended when you read this -

  • Continuous IV or IV heplock: For the love of God, just put one in. I will not whine about it. Draw all the blood you need or want.
  • Fetal Monitoring: Make sure the baby [heart rate] is reactive. If I wish to ambulate, go ahead and use portable monitors. I will stay close to my room (or wheelchair alcove) so I don't go out of range and you have to hunt me down like a lost puppy. If you're good with only intermittent monitoring, so am I. Any whopping decels, put in internals [fetal heart rate monitor]-just let me know ahead of time. If you plan on putting in one internal monitor, just put them both [heart rate and contraction pressure] in. This will be easier on us all.
  • AROM [assisted rupture of membranes]: If I need it, do it. Please have lots and lots of bed pads. I will change them as I need to because I know it can get nasty quickly. I would love a stack of big peri pads and mesh underwear to change often if I wish to ambulate. I don't want that junk dribbling down my legs.
  • Augmentation [making labor stronger]: I'm up for it if I don't make ANY change over 2 hours. I would prefer AROM first if I haven't already ruptured. If that doesn't work, nipple stimulation would be great. Just give them a tug every once in a while. Just kidding. No man-handling of the boobs. Pitocin is just fine. Give my body a good fighting chance first, though.
  • Exams: Check me as often as you think is necessary. Or less often if that's better. Whatever you want to do.
  • Foley vs. Straight cath [to empty bladder]: If I have an epidural and need to be cathed, please just put a foley [indwelling catheter] in. It saves me a little bit of dignity, and it's easier on you. Obviously, if I'm being cathed right before delivery, straight cath is just fine.
  • Pain relief: Trying to go NCB [natural childbirth], but I realize that I'm a wimp. I would like to ambulate, get in the shower, and sit on the birthing ball. Please sterilize the ball first. No way would I ever request getting in the tub. If I eventually ask for an epidural (or straight off the elevator) try to convince me that I don't need it. If I give you the evil eye, just call anesthesia. I don't care who places it, just make sure they do it quickly.
  • Students: I'll get back to you on this one.
  • Residents: If I like you, feel free to join the party. Depending how much pain I'm in, I will be very blunt if I don't want you in the room. If I haven't met you before (or have had only limited contact with you), introduce yourself and try to win me over.
  • Attendings: Please just tell me your opinions and thoughts in front of me. If you think I need something, let me know instead of keeping me in the dark. I'm a big girl, I can handle it.
  • Vaginal Delivery vs. C/Section: Vag delivery is the goal. Unassisted would be great. If I have an epidural and am not feeling the urge to push, let me labor down until I feel something. I would rather not push for hours upon hours, but I do understand that we can't wait forever either. If I push for a long time, I'll let you know if I'm up for vacuum, forceps (if the head's low enough), or c/section. I would prefer forceps first, but I understand some people are not comfortable using them. Vacuum would be the second choice, and I have brought a Dyson from home to assist (they never lose suction).
  • Cesarean Section: Obviously, c/section is bottom of the barrel. Of course, if baby is breech, in distress, if I fail to progress or descend, I understand c/section is the only way to go. Be gentle, make sure I'm nice and numb, and be careful not to nick anything important. That's all I ask. No staples. I think they are the lazy way out of a c/section.
  • Episiotomy: Don't really want one. If you think my butt's going to split opArticleen if I don't have one, by all means, cut away. If there's enough time before hand and I'm still going NCB, do me a favor and numb the area first.
  • Enemas and shaving of the pubic region: I understand that for the last decades we don't do these anymore, but every birth plan still includes them, so I didn't want to deviate from everyone else. No enema. If I poop, I poop. I'm sorry. I know it's disgusting. I'll try my best not to do it. If I do, just try to wipe it away without gagging in front of me, and keep some spray handy so I don't stink up the entire floor. That would be so embarrassing.
  • Shaving. I think I've done a fairly good job staying trimmed up. Don't tell me if I've missed a spot or that I have the most bumps you've ever seen. It's hard to see what's going on down there, so be happy that I tried at all. If you've ever given birth, you know what I'm talking about.
  • Once the baby is out: Hold the crotch area up so that my Bestie/Sister Yolanda can announce the sex. Don't laugh if she fumbles or get's it wrong. Even if my little boo doesn't look good and has  any mec [meconium], I would like him/her up on my chest for exactly 12 minutes. I'm just kidding. I just want him/her long enough to see what he/she actually looks like. I do not expect the baby nurse to do the entire assessment while the baby is latched onto the boob. I would like my Bestie/Sister Yolanda to cut the cord. You do not have to wait until the cord stops pulsating. I couldn't care less about this. If my baby looks crappy, feel free to cut away and send him/her over to the warmer. Once there, if my Bestie/Sister Yolanda is able to at least trim the cord, we'd be cool with that.
  • Cord blood donation: No private donation.I would like to do public donation if I deliver when the cord blood donation people are in house. They don't even have to ask, just take it.
  • Video Recording: Not an issue, we're not even bringing the camcorder. And hospitals don't usually allow them anyway.
  • Vitamin K and erythromycin: Give it.
  • Breastfeeding: I'm going to give it a go. This is the only thing that I REALLY want to accomplish. Please give me any words of wisdom and encouragement that you have.
  • Circumcision: If the baby is a boy, whack away. Just make it tidy. I don't want my son with a botched penis. I would never forgive myself.
  • Visitors: The only people I want in the room (besides all of those caring for me) is my Mother and my Bestie/Sister Yolanda. If family comes up to the floor, you have my blessing to send them away. Because my dad is extremely squeemish, I seriously doubt he'll be peaking in, but my brother Al is NOSEY and will most likely have a camera, so please guard the door.  All my family and friends have been informed of this, and they are well aware that I may be in labor for a long time. When they need an update, we will give them an update. If I change my mind and want additional people in the room, I will let them know. You should not feel obligated to keep track of them. Let me know if they get annoying so that I can yell at them after I deliver.
  • Eating: I know I am not supposed to eat solids in labor. If I want to sneak a little bit of food, I will. I just won't tell you about it. Don't hate me. If anything else comes up that is not touched upon here, just ask. I just want a healthy baby and to be a healthy, happy mom. I can't wait for everyone to meet this munchkin. They've been looking forward to this as much as I have. I love them all and make sure everyone gets the chance to read this birth plan. It may be the only one that makes sense to me.
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  • I have a real problem with circumcision. I actually think it should be illegal to cut parts off boys' genitals, just as it is for girls. Why not wait until he's old enough to decide for himself whether or not he wants part of his equipment cut off? It's his body after all.

    Personally, I'd rather pay a year's salary than have to be circumcised.

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  • It is my faith and my culture and my personal preference for my child. As his mother, I do believe I have his best interest in mind. It may be his body, but he is a beneficiary of my love and desire.
    Complications of neonatal circumcision are uncommon. Minor bleeding and infection occur in one out of every 300 to 500 cases and are easily controlled. Serious complications are rare and are usually related to poor surgical technique. In a survey of 500,000 neonatal circumcisions in New York State, researchers found that no deaths or penile amputations had resulted.

    The lifetime health benefits of neonatal circumcision—including the long-known benefits of genital-hygiene improvement and prevention of local infection and penile cancer—far exceed the risks of the procedure. Circumcision prevents serious kidney infections, particularly in infancy; and there is strong evidence that it has a protective effect against some serious STDs, especially HIV infection, syphilis, and chancroid. A one-week-old circumcised boy has a significant health advantage over his uncircumcised contemporary. And being without a foreskin won't dent his sex life.
    God says to Abraham that circumcision was a part of the Covenant, or part of man’s promise to God. By being circumcised, God ensured the promise of fertility to the Jewish people.

    References to circumcision are found throughout the Old Testament, but they are vague as to how and at what age the action of circumcision itself was to be performed.

    After the time of Moses, the tradition of Jewish circumcision was altered from being performed at the stage of male puberty to that of the neonatal stage, typically being performed on the eighth day after birth. I'm Christian and my Lord and Savior Jesus was Jewish so a lot of my values and views follow His teachings.

    In fact, the Jewish practice of neonatal circumcision is a perfect example of hierarchal control over the body, for the infant, who was too young to decide for himself, was subjected to a Jewish hierarchal system and religion, whether he desired to or not.

    I can respect your view and thank you for respecting mine :)

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  • How can cutting off the most sensitive and pleasurable parts of a baby's genitals not dent their sex life? Women who have their daughters cut love them and think they're doing them a favor too, but we made that illegal.

    These "lifetime health benefits" just don't seem to be there. It's really easy to find circumcised doctors who are against it, but surprisingly difficult to find male doctors in favor who weren't circumcised themselves as children. This is what some other national health organizations say:

    Canadian Paediatric Society
    http://www.cps.ca/english/statements/fn/fn96-01.htm
    "Recommendation: Circumcision of newborns should not be routinely performed."

    http://www.caringforkids.cps.ca/pregnancy&babies/circumcision.htm
    "Circumcision is a 'non-therapeutic' procedure, which means it is not medically necessary."
    "After reviewing the scientific evidence for and against circumcision, the CPS does not recommend routine circumcision for newborn boys. Many paediatricians no longer perform circumcisions."


    Royal Australasian College of Physicians
    http://www.racp.edu.au/index.cfm?objectid=65118B16-F145-8B74-236C86100E4E3E8E
    "In the absence of evidence of risk of substantial harm, informed parental choice should be respected. Informed parental consent should include the possibility that the ethical principle of autonomy may be better fulfilled by deferring the circumcision to adolescence with the young man consenting on his own behalf."
    (almost all the men responsible for this statement will be circumcised themselves, as the male circumcision rate in Australia in 1950 was about 90%. "Routine" circumcision is now *banned* in public hospitals in Australia.)

    British Medical Association
    http://bma.org.uk/-/media/Files/PDFs/Practical%20advice%20at%20work/Ethics/Circumcision.pdf
    "to circumcise for therapeutic reasons where medical research has shown other techniques to be at least as effective and less invasive would be unethical and inappropriate."

    The Royal Dutch Medical Association
    http://knmg.artsennet.nl/Diensten/knmgpublicaties/KNMGpublicatie/Nontherapeutic-circumcision-of-male-minors-2010.htm
    "The official viewpoint of KNMG and other related medical/scientific organisations is that non-therapeutic circumcision of male minors is a violation of children's rights to autonomy and physical integrity. Contrary to popular belief, circumcision can cause complications - bleeding, infection, urethral stricture and panic attacks are particularly common. KNMG is therefore urging a strong policy of deterrence. KNMG is calling upon doctors to actively and insistently inform parents who are considering the procedure of the absence of medical benefits and the danger of complications."

    Drops in male circumcision since 1950:
    USA: from 90% to 55%
    Canada: from 48% to 17%
    UK: from 35% to about 5% (about 1-2% among non-Muslims)
    Australia: 90% to 12.4% ("routine" circumcision has recently been *banned* in public hospitals in all states)
    New Zealand: 95% to below 3% (mostly Samoans and Tongans)
    South America and Europe: never above 5%

    It's worth remembering that no-one except for Muslim and Jewish people would even be having this discussion if it weren't for the fact that 19th century doctors thought that :
    a) masturbation caused various physical and mental problems (including epilepsy, convulsions, paralysis, tuberculosis etc), and
    b) circumcision stopped masturbation.

    Both of those sound ridiculous today I know, but that's how they thought back then, and that's how non-religious circumcision got started. If you don't believe me, then check out this link: http://www.noharmm.org/docswords.htm
    Heck, they even passed laws against "self-pollution" as it was called.

    I don't see any reason not to wait until the person whose body it is can decide for themselves. The USA and Israel are the only two countries in the world where more than half of baby boys are circumcised. (other countries circumcise, but not till anywhere from the age of seven to adolescence)

    90% of Christians worldwide do *not* circumcise. In the most Christian countries in the world (places like Mexico, Poland, Brazil, Spain, Italy), the practice is almost unknown.

    Galatians 5:2 (New American Standard Bible)
    Behold I, Paul, say to you that if you receive circumcision, Christ will be of no benefit to you.http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Galatians%205:2&version=NASB

    Corinthians 7:18-19 (New American Standard Bible)
    Was any man called when he was already circumcised? He is not to become uncircumcised. Has anyone been called in uncircumcision? He is not to be circumcised.
    Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but what matters is the keeping of the commandments of God.
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20Corinthians%207:18-19;&version=NASB

    The form of circumcision practised in Biblical times was also very different from the usual form of western circumcision today btw. It was changed around 130AD to prevent Jewish men from pretending to be intact.

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  • I should add that if you have a son and go ahead and have him circumcised, then I hope it goes fine (and it almost certainly will), but please find out more about what's involved before you go ahead, and at least consider waiting till he's old enough to decide for himself. I honestly think that the more people know about circumcision, the less likely they are to have it done.

    If you have it done to him as a baby, then I would insist on being in the room and that they use local anesthetic.

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  • Love that photo of you, Deinez!

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  • D - make sure when you are all drugged up and they have you signing form after form, that you do not sign the Hep B vaccination. The default is that they will give this vac (needed later, yes. But let's let the child's immune system build up a bit first).

    1 Like
  • Thanks for all your input :)
    Ml66uk, we will have to agree to disagree on the matter of whether I circumcise MY son or not.
    YVR_Samaritan, thank you!!!!
    Sammp, Thanks, I will def. add this to my birthing plan

    Also, this blog/birthing plan was intended to be light and a bit funny. Thank you to those who see that :)

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  • Hey Desi
    Sounds like u have everything planned out really well. A cpl things I have read..moms that eat something sometime in early stages of labor shave a few hours off the labor time. I am definitely pro nursing, I haven't had the opportunity to nurse yet but the advice I have been given by my mom is to frequently wear no bra b4 giving birth, so the shirt material will brush the skin all day to toughen up your nipples so u aren't in so much pain nursing. And also, that in the first few days of nursing, a glass or port wine can help relax the process and help the milk flow well. Her OB actually told her this is he best trick and told my dad to bring in wine for her in the hospital! Also, something I have read, is to nurse on one side and switch after 15 min. And then always start on the side u left off with. Because the baby will nurse more eagerly on the first side so always starting on the side u left will keep it even overall. I just think nursing is such a wonderful thing to do, both for the baby and mother. Besides giving immunities to the baby, it helps prevent breast cancer in the mother and the baby if a girl, and it helps pull the uterus back to the right place, and is bonding, and to top it off it burns 1000 calories a day! What woman wouldn't want that? Lol
    Sounds like u have it all set up. Good luck!

    2 Like
  • Thanks Zenzuma! That's wonderful info!!!

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