As a birth doula, we tend to see A LOT!! There are a couple things that I want you all to know, and to hold in high regard.....Your birth plan is just that. A plan. I am not suggesting that there should not be any thought put into what your vision of your birth looks like. I absolutely do! But, after giving birth myself, and attending countless others, there are a few things that I have learned. Plans tend to change, and when I say that, it is not in bad way, but things change based on circumstance. This does not mean that you should not speak out, or be heard, it does however mean that there is no harm in a plan that changes.
What I have seen is a mom be utterly disappointed during her birth. I have heard "I tried", "I did the best that I could", I have seen tears of disappointment cover a mother's face, and I have been lucky enough to bear witness to these births in which these women are so STRONG! My response to all of them is..."You are damn right that you tried!" There is no shame in the birth game. NONE. If I could ensure that every birth went according to the plan, I would have the magic ticket, but that is something that I don't have any control over. Believe me, that would almost make me a Unicorn Doula, and while I would love that, babies make the plan.
Here is what we can control. We have the power and the control of how we educate ourselves in the process of birth. We have the power of our voice, and that my friends is a big one. The other thing that you can control is GET A DOULA! Now, I would love if it was me, however, get one! We can help you navigate this journey, prepare you for the questions to ask, and make sure that you are heard. We won't speak for you, but we are the gentle reminder holding space for you and your family throughout this process. The other thing that I would suggest is to take a childbirth class. There are so many great resources locally, and it will help you to understand the process and help you to know what you could expect. It doesn't matter if you are a first time mom or not, information always changes, and there are refreshers available.
The other thing I have seen is that what you might have thought was an ideal birth plan, you want nothing to do with. I have had mother's who adamantly wanted a water birth, and upon getting into the tub in the throws of labor, could not get out of that tub fast enough. That is ok. I have had families that wanted a HypnoBirth, and did not want to listen to affirmations during the birth. That too is ok. At the end of the day, I am certain of a couple things in regards to birth plans. As I stated above, they are in plans. It is ok if they change. This is your birth, and it will play out exactly as it should. I am certain that the only people in that room should be in 100% support of you, and if they are not, out they go! Change is hard. Change does not mean failure. It means that you are strong. It means that you are doing exactly what you choose to do to get to that baby.
Motherhood is amazing. Motherhood is hard. Motherhood often means looking adversity and change in the face, and sometimes telling it F**ck Off! Motherhood is full of guilt, and your labor is not one of things that you should feel guilty about. You should feel proud, strong, confidant, informed, and empowered. Ask all of the questions, and sometimes fate will take a hand. I know that this sounds dumb, but trust the process, because at the end of the day, YOU can do this! You are strong enough!