Birth plans are often scoffed at with the accusation that you are trying to make an unpredictable day into one with a script. Birth plan makers are even called control freaks. But if you think about it, if you don't make a birth plan, you are kind of making a plan ... a different type of plan. But still a no birth plan plan.

It's a plan to take a major back seat.

Your no birth plan could look something like this:

1. Positions -- I don't really know anything about the difference in positions for labor, nor do I really care. While squatting and all fours is most effective and may help me relieve pain the best, I don't really mind if I'm stuck on my back the whole time.

2. Interventions -- Vaginal exams, having my water broken even if my body's not ready, or being told I have to have a very painful induction because it could help us be done faster doesn't bother me. I go to a doctor because he's got a degree, it's not like he really cares if I have an opinion anyway.

3. Family -- I don't really care if my family gets to be involved, if the daddy gets to cut the cord or hold the baby first if I end up with a c-section. I don't really mind if no one is with me at all, or if my whole extended family is, or if half-cousin Joe is taking a video for YouTube.

4. C-section -- If things are taking a little while or there might be a little effort needed from me, I don't mind just hopping over to the c-section wagon. I don't really care if my husband goes in with me or not or where the baby goes while I'm healing.

5. The baby's food -- Breastfeeding or formula, it's all the same, right? I'll just go with whatever nurse is on schedule's opinion of how I should feed my baby because it doesn't really matter to me one bit. If they give a bottle right away and I can't get baby to latch, it's no skin off my back.

6. Procedures -- I haven't put any thought into delayed cord clamping, donating cord blood, or the ointments and injections they want for the baby after birth. Whatever they do, I'm sure it's best. I don't need to be bothered with such minute details.

7. Pain -- Whatever, drugs, no drugs, you choose.

Ladies and gents, no birth plan IS a birth plan -- a bad plan at that. A good birth plan is just making some very basic decisions that every responsible mother-to-be should already make, even unconsciously. Some hospitals hand you a form and have you circle things that they stick in your chart, such as whether or not you intend to breastfeed. Ta-da, you've made a birth plan.

How set you are on those opinions is up to you, how much effort you put forth to having them followed is going to be dependent on your support system. Your experience may void them anyway, but no woman should go in without some sort of plan.

Whether you called it a birth plan or not, what decisions did you make in advance about your birth and baby?

 

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