Whether you’ve spent hours meticulously mapping out your birth plan, or yours simply consists of the word “EPIDURAL”, there are three truths and reminders that should be italicised and included in each birth plan.
Labor is unpredictable
This truth cannot be emphasized enough. Not only is every labor experience different from the next, but your experience may differ from the one you’ve come to expect through your nine months of anticipation. As much as we all want our labor to go according to our expectations, with minimal surprises, very rarely will our experience perfectly reflect that which we’ve been imagining. Often our preconceived expectations can inhibit our experience and mindset if we allow ourselves to be consumed by disappointment when reality doesn’t perfectly align with said expectations. This is why the unpredictability of labor should be expected and accounted for in each birth plan. Even if your plan relies simply on an epidural; sometimes epidurals fail, only work on one side, or you arrive at the hospital and are too far along to even receive an epidural. Such unpredictability can be expected in each and every labor experience.