Birthing Plans and Other Best-Laid Mice and Men

My second child came into the world the wrong way.

He wasn’t unplanned. He didn’t attempt to escape bum-first. He did ruin all my lovely plans to have a natural birth at a healthy point in the pregnancy with the aid of a midwife.

After being checked into the hospital for monitoring around week 30, I told the nurse I couldn’t possibly be facing a necessary C-Section. “I had a birthing plan!” I protested.

The (bad-news) nurse laughed and said, “It’s always the ones with birthing plans that end up in emergency surgery.”


Photo by Jonathan Borba on

But, what if she was right? What if Fate, Karma, or a teasing God wants to remind pregnant women just who’s in control of the miracle of life? Does that mean we ought not to try?

Of course not.

What I will suggest, to any woman expecting, is to be flexible. I went through the worst weeks ever with that second pregnancy, because every week presented a new set of bad news. First, I passed a blood clot and thought I’d killed my unborn baby. Next, I learned I had a placenta previa and would have to have a C-Section; I said, “Goodbye” to my midwife and our natural birthing class. Then, I had bleed after bleed after ambulance ride after bleed after hospital check-in after bleed after emergency delivery by a vertical C-Section.

No natural birth. And, no future vaginal births.

At the time, I was quite upset. But, as I tell one of my children frequently, it doesn’t do any good to fall down a hole and sit at the bottom of it yelling. It certainly doesn’t do any good to muddy yourself up even more in order to look more pitiful.

Photo by Skitterphoto on

I’m disappointed that I couldn’t have my birthing plan. But, I’ve since given birth to three more children. And, I got to schedule every one of them. Surgery’s not ideal, but it sure is convenient for a birthing plan to arrange for babysitting.

So there, bad-news nurse.

©2020 Chel Owens


17 thoughts on “Birthing Plans and Other Best-Laid Mice and Men

  1. Well, now I’m glad the only plan I had was to get them out. Though my first came so early that my doctor had only mentioned coming up with a birth plan about a week before.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think there’s no guarantee. Besides, the nurse wouldn’t see all the birthing plans that worked. She would only see the ones who made it into surgery. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It was! So many well-meaning friends said things like, “Well, a C-Section won’t be so bad because you can still try for a VBAC.” To her credit, my doctor told me right afterwards so I knew as soon as I could.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. 😀 😀 My sister was so jealous because my due date was AFTER hers but I got scheduled to deliver before her.

      Coincidentally, she came early, so our babies are only 8 days apart.

      Liked by 1 person

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