🌱 Put down the books and feel into your body's innate wisdom gifted to you by Nature so you know the rhythms of birth and have confidence in your body's ability to give birth.
✨ Take a break from hypnosis and affirmations to listen to the wisdom of your Ancestors so you unlock your innate wisdom and intuition.
🔥 Push pause on the birth stories and attune to the stories of the Elemental Alchemy of your cells so you know your strengths to call upon them in birth and beyond.
Download your free guide now to experience homebirth preparation that follows the innate cyclic rhythms of your body for a more confident and intuitive birth.
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Natural Homebirth Tips, Childbirth Education
Don't arrive to your birth with these common mistakes in your birth plan!
1. Making it too long
When you arrive for your birth, your birth team will be busy evaluating your progress and determining whether you are ready to be admitted for labor and how far you have progressed toward birth. What they may not have time for is a long and involved birth plan. Most birth professionals will recommend keeping your birth plan to a single page with bullets, which is very easy for your birth team to review. What this means for you is that you need to trim your birth plan down to the essential pieces of information that are actually important to the outcome of your birth, to your birth philosophy and to the approach to birth you are following.
2. Not researching your birth team's routine care
The amount of information you will read in books and online in regard to labor and birth can be overwhelming. One of the first things to do when starting on your birth plan is to talk to your care provider and the facility where you will give birth to get an understanding of their routine procedures, when they use them and how many of their expectant moms decline routine procedures. If anyone who will potentially be a part of your birth team is not open to discussing routine procedures or responds negatively to declining routine procedures, it may be an indicator to consider a change of providers if possible. I also recommend asking our list of most important questions to ask your care provider to get a deeper understanding of their philosophy of birth. Find the link to the list of questions at the bottom of this article.
3. Being too rigid
Just as you don't want a birth team who is rigid about their routine procedures that you may not agree with, you also don't want to create a birth plan that is too rigid. The exact path your birth will take is not predictable and you may want to have the flexibility to change some aspects of your plan in labor without being setup for that to feel like a failure to follow your plan. You can indeed pivot your birth plan and avoid the feeling of failure by crafting your birth plan to include flexibility and focus on the aspects that will be important regardless of unexpected events.
4. Not discussing your plan with your care team ahead of time
Once you arrive at your birth place, it can be hard to discuss your entire birth plan with your care team because you and everyone on your team will be focusing on your birth. If at all possible, it is best to have your birth plan already available to your care team and review it with your primary birth provider ahead of time so anything that needs to be clarified or updated can be done so before the start of labor. Discussing your plan with your care team earlier on will also help eliminate any extraneous material or redundancy that your care team can point out for you so everyone can focus on what is most important for your birth.
5. Using a birth plan template that does not include your birth philosophy or approach
We have a previous article about the hazards that templated birth plans can create and why we don't recommend them for our students, you can find the link to that article at the bottom of this article. In essence, templated birth plans usually focus on specific procedures and interventions that you will be at liberty to discuss with your care team rather than focusing on the overall approach and belief system you would like to have honored in your birth. Instead of including all the details about what you want and don't to be offered in labor, which might change when the time actually comes, focus on the overall approach.
6. Stop thinking of your birth as something you can plan
Birth cannot be controlled or planned, but it does have a predictable pattern, a clear path that it follows, what we call the birth cycle in the Natural Birth Compass program. You cannot plan your birth, even if some aspects of it are scheduled, there is always the possibility for unexpected events - you could go into labor before your scheduled induction or c-section, you could have a surprise breech when your baby was observed to be well positioned, you could have a girl when it was previously noted you were expecting a boy - I have seen all of these things happen, so I can tell you that it is never something that fully follows the plan. You can, however, prepare for the cycle of birth, the pattern that all births follow in their own way and at their own pace, this way you will feel in control and know where your birth is going throughout your labor and birth, even if it's not what you anticipated.
Rather than a birth plan, you can make a birth vision that you can hold throughout labor and birth, that lays out all the important pieces, that explains how you expect to handle your labor and birth, how you like to be supported during tough times and who will be helping you through. This is what will help your birth team help you the most. So forget about the small details - continuous monitoring, avoiding induction, limited cervical checks, these are discussions you can have with your team at the time if they are needed, these are things that should not be rigid. No one is going to secretly hook you up to a continuous monitoring system without you noticing, so leave these kinds of worries and plans behind and focus on the kind of support you need to prevent you from needing unnecessary interventions - this is how birth should be understood and respected.
Three important questions you must ask your birth provider before you go into labor!
Are birth plans enough for natural birth today?
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