Birth Plan: The Reaction

So, remember my appointment was on Thursday?  Well, Marvin and I got there and the receptionist was all “ummm, no, you don’t have an appointment today.”  And I was all “yes huh!”.  Anyway, it was a mistake on their part.  So, I go and deposit my urine sample and sit down in the waiting room.  I was so flipping nervous.  It was freeeeeezing in there, but I was sweating.  Anyway, the nurse calls me back and weighs me and then I realize I’ve already gained a whopping 32 lbs (the amount I gained the ENTIRE PREGNANCY with Elaina– I still have 10ish weeks left. Awesome.).  She checks my blood pressure and shows me to my room.  

The nurse’s aid comes in and checks the heartbeat.  She takes too long to find it and I have to point at where Dane is (the large lump, woman). Then she does that thing they do where they listen for 2 seconds and pretend like they know the rate.  His “rate” is always 150.  (Yeah, we know you fake it!)

Marvin and I sit there for about 30 minutes (like we always do waiting for Dr. Brown).  He comes in and accesses my records on his laptop.  

Dr. Brown: So, I see you did your glucose test with your jelly beans and your numbers were great.  Anything below 130 is good and you were in the 93 range.
Me: Yep.  They tried to give me attitude over the jelly beans.
Dr. Brown: And I’m confident you handled it.

(Marvin and Dr. Brown look at each other and laugh and laugh and laugh.)

Me: Ok, let’s scale it back, guys.  That’s a little too much laughter.  

We talked a little about my being slightly anemic.  And then, I dropped the bomb on him.

Me: Ok, so, I have something I want to talk to you about.
Dr. Brown: Go for it! You’re the caboose today, so, take your time.
Me: Ok, so, with Elaina we were shooting for an un-medicated birth and we kind of winged it without preparing and it didn’t work out.  So, we’ve been taking Bradley Method classes this time and I’ve been thinking about what I’d like to change, and…… I wrote a birth plan and wanted to see how you feel about it.
Dr. Brown: Ok, let’s hear it!
Me: It’s kind of long, but there are three parts that I know go against “normal” practice. Here we go: I’d like intermittent monitoring.  How do you feel about that?
Dr. Brown:  If your labor stalls and you need pitocin, I think it’s important that you are under continuous fetal monitoring.
Me: Completely agree, but I’m not getting pitocin.  I’m going to labor at home as long as possible and I don’t want any augmentation of labor.
Dr. Brown: Ok, well, in that case, I think it’s fine as long as we agree that if the baby shows signs of distress during the intermittent monitoring, we need you on continuous monitoring. 
Me: Agreed.  Ok, I would prefer a saline lock instead of an IV. How do you feel about that?
Dr. Brown: That’s fine, but I want the saline lock at least.  Can I ask why you don’t want the IV?
Me: It’s just really hard to relax and move freely when there’s a needle in your hand and you’re attached to a pole and have to drag it everywhere. 
Dr. Brown: Ok, makes sense.  But, the saline lock at least, ok?
Me: Ok.  And, here’s the one I’m the most worried about: I’d like to be able to use the birth tub.  I have absolutely no desire to have a water birth, but I’d like to be able to use it for pain management during labor. How do you feel about that?
Dr. Brown: Yeah. The hospital has a room with a tub in it.  We can arrange that.  We may need to let L&D know ahead of time so they have it ready for you, but it shouldn’t be a problem.
Me: Ok, I really don’t want to have the baby in there, but I’d like to have the option to use it during contractions.
Dr. Brown: Yeah, I had a patient talk me into using the birth tub once to deliver and it was the first and last time.  It was a train wreck.  I knew it would be a train wreck when she started pushing, but by then it was too late.  
Me: I have no desire, so don’t worry about that. Ok, that’s pretty much it.  Would you like to look it over?
Dr. Brown: Yes, please.
(I hand him the birth plan)
Me: It’s kind of long.
Dr. Brown: I wouldn’t expect anything else from you. (Looks at Marvin and they both start laughing).
Me: Ok…. y’all.  It’s not THAT funny.
(Dr. Brown composes himself and reads over the plan. Long pause of silence as he reads through the plan.)
Dr. Brown: Oh, I already know I’m going to fail this one.  
Me: What?!? Which one? 
Dr. Brown: Don’t offer pain medicine, epidural.
Me: Why??
Dr. Brown: Because I just hate seeing people in pain!
Me: Ok, well, if you have to say it just whisper it or something.
Marvin: You’re a DOCTOR who hates seeing people in pain?
(At this point I shoot Marvin a death stare that means “Did you hear him say YES to the tub? Shut it.”)
Dr. Brown: I’ll try to make a note so I remember, though.
(More reading…) 
Dr. Brown: Ok, I think everything in here is ok.  Let me just finish reading through it and there’s something I want to touch on.
(At this point I start to sweat again.)
Dr. Brown: Ok, this cord pulsating shi….thing. 
Me: DR. BROWN! What were you going to say??
Dr. Brown (ignoring the slip of the tongue): Physiologically the placenta and cord………(Dr. Brown goes into a medical explanation of how the cord and placenta work and why it worries him to wait on the clamping of the cord.  I’m aware that his school of thought is old school, but I let it slide. Did I mention that he ok’d the birth tub?)
Me (giddy like a school girl from the “yes” to the tub): Ok, we can edit that part out.  It doesn’t matter. 
Dr. Brown: And, the part about the baby not going to the nursery.  I would think about that.  Depending on when you deliver, you will be tired.  It’s a huge difference between intrauterine environment and extrauterine environment.  In the nursery, the baby will be monitored.  It may be better for the baby to be monitored than if you are both passed out in a dark room with no one watching the baby.  I know at home it’ll be the same thing, but….
Me: I don’t sleep. 
Marvin: She really doesn’t.  She will feed the baby every two hours and do breathing checks every 10 seconds.  
Dr. Brown: Ok. Hahaha. I actually don’t doubt that. Just a suggestion! 

Then he gave me the whole thing about “What REALLY matters is that you and the baby are safe”.  And I smiled and said, “yes, but there’s nothing in my birth plan that deters from that.” He smiled, “I agree”. 

Me: So, tell me the truth…. you hate when people bring birth plans, right?
Dr. Brown: No.
Me: C’mon… it won’t hurt my feelings. You hate it?
Dr. Brown: I really don’t! 

He totally hates it. 

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