Our Birth Plan (notes)

            I finally found the 'Birth Plan' I had typed up for Elizabeth's Birth! It features notes that I took out of the "Husband Coached Childbirth by Robert A. Bradley" book. I thought I would share it with you, and feel free to copy and paste this and use it for yourselves.

I must urge you to read why you do these things in the book yourselves or contact me for an over the phone conversation if you don't have time to read the book before you are due to have your baby. These are just notes and it is impossible to fully understand how to labor or birth unless you read why.  It is very important to read the book, it explains all these things in detail, gives examples and although you may be able to do it just from the 'notes' I post here; it is much better, safer and less fearful to read the book. You can also always order it digitally on the Barnes and Noble website and read it with the digital reader they let you download for free (forgot the name of it). I've done that with books before and it works especially well if you can't get to a bookstore that actually carries the book you are looking for. Here is the link to purchase it: Husband Coached Childbirth     It is only $12! 

           Hopefully very shortly here in the future I can finally write the full post about Natural Childbirth/Christian Childbirth and include most or all of the facts that I have learned and know that are not included here.  If you have questions please email me (to talk or to get my number!). 


Natural and Beautiful Childbirth

Principles: What we need to believe. Changing the way childbirth looks to us.

1. Fear is created from the unknown and causes tension—leading to pain. Tension and fears prolong labor. Over-breathing and unnatural breathing (like he- he- hooo) result in a loss of Co2, and a prolonged labor.

2. First of all before starting this, remember:
  • We are not delivering anything or anyone, a child is being born. A mother doesn't need to be delivered from her child. We deliver pizzas, not babies. Delivery is forced and scary. Birth takes it's own course and is beautiful.
  • We are not in a hurry! 
  •  Let nature (God) take it’s course! Babies come when they are ready and your body is fully bloomed. This is not in our hands or a doctor's. **
  • We don’t care when the baby comes, only how. **
  • Childbirth for the JOY of it!

 Preparation and First stage of labor 1. Needs in labor

        a. Darkness & solitude

         b. Quiet

          c. Physical comfort, be in a comfortable position

           d. Physical Relaxation:   tensing up caused from lights, noises, strangers, un-                            comfortableness causes PAIN. Loosen muscles during contractions.

           e. Controlled Breathing:  much like you breathe while you are asleep in the beginning-                         will get deeper and faster with deeper and faster contractions.

             f. Closed eyes and the appearance of sleep.

2. What to Do:

         a. Do not move: during a contraction, if you do….it will hurt.        When you use 
         your muscles you tense up your body -- even if you are just moving your leg . . . it will
            cause pain. The more you use them or the harder, the more pain it causes!

         b. Abdominal breathing (using your diaphragm, not your chest):      is normal, efficient, 
                 effective and helps relaxation.

        c. Relaxation:     when you relax you allow the uterus to work, which means getting rid of 
                pain and getting to see your baby faster! When you fight the uterus, especially during
                 a contraction it hurts.

               d. The “duh” look:       relax your jaw to relax the rest of your body! Prevents clenching
                    teeth, which would not mean you are relaxing ALL of your body!

3. Other things to remember/do:

                  a. Change positions:   the ‘lounge’ chair position: none of the bone joints are fully  
                          flexed or fully extended, they are all in the halfway position, preventing tensing
                              and forcing your body to relax….even your joints to relax!

                     b. Relaxation (how to):

                         a. Let go: relax and let go of every muscle starting from the top down.

                           b. Mind to Body: NO thinking of stressful things! Think of a ‘happy’ place and
                               picture every detail of it in your head to keep your mind from thinking of
                                other things. Have Chris help me with this by: talking to me about Elizabeth
                                 or about how much he loves me (fun memories in the past, etc) but nothing
                             that will make me laugh during a contraction since that will mess up breathing
                             and makes you tense up your muscles!! Also he could talk to me about
                             meeting the baby or what she’ll look like, how big she’ll be, etc. He will talk
                             softly and be close to me (unless that distracts me too much of course!) Have
                              him pet my hair, like not run fingers through, but like massage or pet in short
                             strokes like you would a cute lil puppy!! ( I think that is one of the most
                               romantic and calming things a man can do!!) Have him hold my hand or
                               especially let me SMELL him. ( I love your smell honey and it makes me feel
                            all googly inside!)

                       c. Breathing: Abdominal ‘diaphragm’ breathing.

                           a. Breathe like in deep sleep

                         b. Make sure breathing from diaphragm….not chest!! If you are breathing
                         from your diaphragm your stomach will be moving up and down, the muscles
                      will move!! Your breathing muscles are above your uterine ones, and it may feel
                          like you shouldn’t or can’t use them because it will interfere but it won’t! Most
                       women cannot tell if they are breathing correctly because they cannot tell which
                          muscles are which, or the uterine contractions are so powerful and full of
                       pressure that they cannot feel for themselves if they are actually using their
                         breathing muscles or not!

                    c. If having trouble with breathing: have chris put his hand on my tummy so I can
                         felt the weight of it, causing me to be able to feel if my stomach is rising or
                          falling. Also, sit in the lounge chair position to help get on track.

    Harder Labor   
     1. These are some things that will change in what you are
         supposed to do, when your contractions become harder and labor progresses. (this
       will be right before the birth of the baby, the home stretch before you start pushing)

               a. Keep eyes closed at ALL times and no conversation between contractions since
                 more concentration and relaxation is needed now since contractions are harder and
               closer than before.

               b. May not want physical contact now because it may distract be easier than it did
              before…just respect and understand that: DO NOT take it personally or think you are
                not a good coach.!! You are amazing

               c. Keep the ‘duh’ look and breathe through your mouth. It is harder and takes more
                effort for you to pass air through the narrow nasal passages

             d. Pressure (a constipated feeling) from the baby’s head is very hard to deal with and is
            really uncomfortable for me (leah) to feel, and very painful, so I need to be reminded
             this: It is a good sign because it means birth is near and this feeling should be
           welcomed because it means there is progress and the baby is going to come soon! Also
            remind me not to push because of this pressure until my cervix is ready for it! Pushing
           will feel better, but may not be right, especially because it causes you to tense up, which
           causes pain, and unless you are pushing the baby out and there is someone to catch her…
               pushing does no good and only causes more pain in the long run!

            2. Husband continues to talk (whisper) softly in Mom’s ear-reminding her that:

                                  a. Harder contractions are a good thing, the stronger means that
                                        the sooner it’s over and we get to see the baby!

                                  b. she should welcome, and be thankful for contractions because they
                                    are for a good purpose and the harder means the sooner it’s over! Feel
                                  them coming and be excited (Yes! Another one!). Every one brings
                               you closer to your baby!

                        c. DON’T tell me about time or what time it is , or how long it’s been since I’ve 
                dilated if things are going slowly, if they are progressing fast, go ahead…otherwise
                don’t let me know because I don’t want to think that the baby will never come or that
              something may be wrong, or feel stress that it’s not going fast enough! If it isn’t going
               fast enough, and Chris has to tell me, then I also need to be reassured that: things may
                start getting faster at any time (just because it has been slow doesn’t mean that within
                   10 minutes we won’t have a baby!), and that slowness may be what nature (God’s)
                    course is and we should trust and accept that God & nature know what they are
              doing! This is not a unknown and unpredictable thing for God or my body: both of
             them are doing this for a reason and there is a strict schedule between the two of them
                 that unfortunately we do not know, and that we have to trust it!

                d. if there are any complications or problems that I have to know about, I would like
                  Chris to tell me first, and then if I have questions I will then talk to the doctor or
                nurse myself, or if they want to talk to me personally, then (only after chris tells me)
                 they can talk to me.

                   3. The Pushing feeling:               an urge to push and bear down that goes away
                                  and comes back means it isn’t time yet.

                     a. Don’t allow me to push until we are for sure the cervix is fully open. I like to
                     push when I feel pressure because it relieves it, but I can't do that.

                       b. Just remind me that a pressure and ‘baby coming out’ feeling is meaning we are
                     almost done

                      c. There is no point in pushing of the cervix isn’t open yet, even if it feels better to
                      push- it will slow down progress. Until the cervix is fully open, my only job is to
                      relax and let the uterus work. It is not my job to work until the uterus is done

       The Birth

Pushing should never be forced. ALL of this is done with your body, not against it. You feel the urge and then do the following. Never do this to force your body to push.

    1. Pushing Position:        like having a bowel movement-the farther back the legs go,
                the less flesh there is to get in the way of a bowel….or a baby!

                 a. Try to have me actually squatting, it’s the best way!

                 b. Also can do the Lounge chair position. Make sure the bed is adjusted upward- ( I 
              don’t want to be ‘comfy’ at all *this of course could change with how I feel at the time*,
               but labor is work and I want it to be like exercising: it doesn’t work if your body ..Or
              your mind…is not awake. I just got done trying to relax and now I need to do a 180 and
                be fully prepared for very physical labor!!

   2. Contractions:     during a contraction/push your wife will:

                1. Curl her back, pulling her head and shoulders forward (like trying to look over her
                     preg tummy)

                 2. Draw her knees back and apart with her arm muscles

                 3. Elbows are thrust out and each wrist and forearm securely locked behind and
                 under her knees.

                 4. During downward pushing lets her leg muscles be completely relaxed as she pulls
                 them with her arms.

                          - This will literally shorten and open the birth canal (vagina)

                       - Do not contract or constrict myself because of the pressure. Just because I’m
                          working now, doesn’t mean I need to tense up my whole body…only the specific
                           parts that need to work!!

3. Performance

              1. Knees back, forearms (not just hands) under legs and pulling them back. Knees don’t
               have to be far apart. These actions will make my back like a ball and the baby will come
               sliding out

             2. Legs are loose and relaxed.

                   3. Take a deep breath (fills lungs and creates a cushion of air that pushes the uterus
                       forward and downward. The cushion will encourage the uterus to come forward
                     and will get the baby into the proper alignment with the pelvis.)

                       4. Chin on chest. (traps air and increases the inter-abdominal pressure, which
                          helps the baby to be born.)

                        5. Elbows up and out. (Releases pressure from Mom’s perineum,…having the
                           elbows in will pull legs out instead of back and could cause more tearing!!...not
                          good L) This also helps to numb the perineum and she should feel no stinging
                           from birthing and an episiotomy usually can be done without mom even feeling

4. Breathing
 (again - you breathe like this when your body tells you to push, not like you would be directed to in a hospital. When you feel the urge to push, then you breathe like this:)

                        a. Breathe like a swimmer in an underwater race! Take a deep breath like you are
                         going to go under water.

                       b. All breathing is open-mouthed with an open and a relaxed throat.

                      c. Directions: (starting from the beginning of a contraction)

                                              1. Uterine contraction begins, calmly inhale and then
                                               fully release two times. On the third big breath, fill lungs
                                              fully with fresh air and hold it.

                                               2. Hold it as long as you can, then exhale completely.

                                              3. If contraction is still going, immediately inhale completely and hold as long as you can.

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