Creating a Successful Birth Plan

Whether you're giving birth naturally, or planning for an epidural, it all starts with having a birth plan. What elements should you include in your plan? How many pages should it be? How should you present it to your healthcare provider? Making these decisions in advance will help you create the best birth experience possible.

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Episode Transcript

Preggie Pals
Creating a Successful Birth Plan

Please be advised, this transcription was performed from a company independent of New Mommy Media, LLC. As such, translation was required which may alter the accuracy of the transcription.


Care Messer: Whether you want to give birth naturally at home or plan for an epidural, the moment you are admitted into the hospital, it's all part of your birth plan. Making these decisions in advance will help you create the best birth experience possible. I am Care Messer, Hypno-Birthing Childbirth Educator in Doula and this is Preggie Pals, Episode 1.

[Theme Song/Intro]

Sunny Gault: Welcome to Preggie Pals broadcasting from the Birth Education Center of San Diego. I am your host Sunny Gault. Thank you so much for joining us. This is our first episode so thank you guys. Preggie Pals is all about to educating Moms-to-be about their choices during pregnancy and childbirth so they can make decisions that are best for their family. And this show is all about our listeners. You can visit our website at, for more information on how you can become a part of our show and you can send us comments or suggestions through the contact link on our website or ... this is something new, you can call the Preggie Pals Hotline and that number is 619-8664-775 and leave us a message. Alright, so we are joined here by three expecting moms in the studio in addition to myself. I am 34 years old. I am a Web video host and producer. My due date is 28th April technically. We are having another little boy, we already have a little boy named Sayer and I guess I have to modify the due-date because I am having a C-section and that is actually planned for April 23rd. So, I don't know really what to say, do you say your due-date when you are having a C-section?

Care Messer: Say the birth-date.

Sunny Gault: The birth date? Yeah. Okay. So, the birth-date, right now, as of now, if I make it, is April 23rd. Okay, Rachele what about you?

Rachele DeMeo: Hi my name is Rachele DeMeo. I teach college part-time. My due date is June 23rd and we are expecting a little boy. We already have one son. And we are planning on having a vaginal hospital birth.

Amy Barnes: Hi, my name is Amy Barnes. I am 35 years. I am a stay-at-home mom. My due-date is July 1st. We are having a little boy. His big sister is super excited and we are hoping for natural birth.

Cherri Christiansen: And, I am Cherri Christiansen. I am 30. I work in Market Research. My due date is June 20th depending on who you ask but that was the first date I got, so I am sticking with it. We don't know the gender of the baby much too many people’s dismay but I am very, very excited to find out and we are hoping to have a home birth. This will our first baby and I have two wonderful mid-wives and if everything goes well, my baby will be born at home.

Sunny Gault: Alright. Welcome to the show ladies.


[Featured Segment: News Headlines]

Sunny Gault: So we are going to kick off today’s episode with some unbelievable pregnancy stories making headlines around the internet. And all these stories are posted on our Preggie Pals Pinterest Board if you want to check them out.
Okay, for this first story, honestly I couldn't even believe it when I first heard it. Of course we are based here in San Diego so this really hits home for us. There is a hospital nearby, it is called Tri-City, there was a women named Cynthia Ziegler, who had a 13 pound 14 ounce baby, not too long ago, I think this literally happened a couple of weeks ago and it was born via C-section. Thank goodness for that mom. I think it was a planned C-section. What I love about this story is they really didn't know how big this baby was going to be. It says that couple months ago they thought the baby whose name is Jayden was going to weigh about 9 pounds at birth and then just a couple of weeks ago before the baby was born, the estimate jumped to 11 pounds but no one thought he was going to be just under 14 pounds. And, I love these comments. I just have to read this to you from the mom. When she found out how big the baby was her quote was “How’d he fit?”


Which is so true, right? Because you wonder your baby even if it is an 8 pound baby, you wonder how it fits in your tummy, right? Okay, so the general reaction. I want to hear what you have to say about this.

Rachele DeMeo:Oh! My God! I actually saw this story a couple of weeks ago and randomly, my husband was reading it and then I happened to notice it was in Vista. And I was like, “Oh! My God, that’s right here!” And I was just..., I mean, this is my first baby, I don't know what to expect. You know, people often say that your size now isn’t really indicative, it's more of what you weighed, when you were a baby, or what your husband weighed. And we were both about 8 pounds and I think that's big! So I was kind of hoping to not have a baby bigger than that. I couldn't even possibly imagine. I can't imagine what she must have felt like in the last couple of weeks of her pregnancy.

Sunny Gault: Right? Yeah! Well, and then Amy you had a pretty big baby with your first, right?

Amy Barnes: Right. She was 10 pounds and they never even told me, she was going to be bigger than 8, you know, bigger than normal. So, yeah that was a shock for me and I wondered how she fit in there. But almost 14 pounds it is totally different.

Sunny Gault: I know, how accurate are they though?

Amy Barnes: They are not.

Cherri Christiansen: Do they really have very good ways of really telling?

Care Messer:No, I think if you do a Sonogram or Ultrasound, I think you have a better idea of knowing. I had a friend who had Gestational Diabetes, which by the way this mom did not have Gestational...,

Sunny Gault: Yeah, I was just going to ask, if she had gestational.

Care Messer: No, no. But I had a friend who had that and they were monitoring her pretty, you know, pretty well up until the very end. And they could give her a really good estimate based on a Sonogram about how big the baby is going to be.

Sunny Gault: And it’s off like a pound or two? It could go either way.

Care Messer: I don’t think it’s an exact science.

Amy Barnes: Yeah, it is.

Care Messer: But they told me I had a six pound baby and he was seven and a half pounds.

Amy Barnes: Yeah.

Care Messer: I mean there’s not much of a difference, but.... But, still, it’s enough right? I was shocked, my son, my first baby was nine pounds, two ounces. And the day I went into labor, I had an OB appointment and he told me may be 7 pounds. Am like, the day of…..!

Sunny Gault: What I remember is that you always thought that he was a bigger baby?

Care Messer: Well, yeah, I actually had because I was kind of seeing different Obs. I purposely did that because I was not sure who was going to deliver my baby, and so I was trying to kind of get a variety in there. I think it was probably a month earlier I did have another OB, they said “Oh! I think he is already 8 pounds!” But see you get all these different opinions.

Sunny Gault: How do you know?

Care Messer: Yeah, how do you know? And what do you do if someone does tell you that you are going to have a big baby? I mean does that change? I mean I know a lot of you want to go for vaginal births! So does that change your perspective at all?

Cherri Christiansen : Absolutely!

Care Messer: Yeah, Oh yeah!


Sunny Gault: But what do you do?

Cherri Christiansen : I think it depends on how big though. It depends how big? There’s a certain size that I would still go for vaginal birth. Obviously a 13 pound baby …., I think that might change my plans significantly.

Amy Barnes: I have been pushing for two and a half hours, a seven and a half pound baby….. Yeah,….., no!

Sunny Gault: Right, right. I know. Well, we certainly wish Cynthia Ziegler the best with her baby. Everyone is doing fine by the way; mommy and baby are doing great.


Sunny Gault: Today on PreggiePals we are discussing how to create a successful birth plan. Our expert today is Care Messer, a Hypno-Birthing Childbirth Educator, Doula and the owner of the Birth Education Center of San Diego which of course is the beautiful place we are broadcasting out of right now. Care welcome to the show and thank you for joining us today.

Care Messer: Thanks for having me.

Sunny Gault: Okay, so let’s talk about birth plans because when we talk about having a baby ultimately this is going to come up and there is tons of information out there.

Care Messer: There is too much!

Sunny Gault: There is too much of information, you are right. So let’s kind of clear through all the clutter. What exactly is a birth plan? What is the purpose of it?

Care Messer: The purpose of it, I think and I want moms to start as soon as they are pregnant, is to get educated on what options they have for birth; because there are more options than you know and if your just dictated to by what your friends did or what, you know, your doctor only does a certain thing, you lose out on what could be a beautiful experience or a personal preference that you didn't know that was available to you. So the more information you have about a birth plan, the easier it is to narrow down what exactly you picture at your birth, because everybody's picture of what they want is different.

Sunny Gault: And there is so much information out there too, about the different types of births you can have. Obviously that's one goal of Preggie Pals is to make sure that we are giving you guys all the information that you need, but do you have any advice for how you even go about that process? You know, to kind of determine? What do you even put in a birth plan? You know what your preferences are?

Care Messer: Oh, there is so many.

Sunny Gault: Yeah, I know.

Care Messer: The first thing I like to do, is it depends on what kind of birth you want. Are you doing a natural birth or are you going for home birth, Medicaid birth or a cesarean. There are different processes that you want to know and what your care provider provides. A lot of hospitals like Kaiser has a birth preference sheet, that I call birth preference because a plan is kind of intimidating.

Sunny Gault: I like that though and it is catchy. There’s not so much pressure when you do that.

Care Messer: And if it is a preference it is softer for your care providers because it is not, “Here’s my plan! I am doing it!” and they are more open to it and that's what you want, because they have to support to what you want, otherwise you got the wrong care provider.

Amy Barnes: I like that as well, because the best advice that I was given when I was pregnant with my first, was to have a flexible birth plan.

Care Messer: Completely. Yeah.

Amy Barnes: And from all of my friends that had very rigid birth plans, it never went the way that they wanted. And, even with me, I had to get induced and I didn't want to get induced. It was like the worst thing they could have ever told me was that you have to get induced but, my Amniotic Fluid was low. When I asked my OBGYN, I was I like “Well, what is the risk of not getting induced?” And she’s very respectful of birth plans and also, you know, does more than natural route and so forth, but, she said “You know, honestly you could have a still birth!” And she’s like, “If I didn’t think it was that critical, I wouldn’t encourage you to get….”, because I was just measuring so much lower than I was, the week prior, that they did an ultra sound and they were kind of panicking and they were like, “We need to induce you!” So they tried…, at first I tried to drink a bunch of water and I went home and tried to walk and tried to see… they actually gave me something, I forget what it’s called, to induce it naturally before Pitocin, and I had that overnight and it didn’t work.

Care Messer: Was it Cervidil?

Amy Barnes: It probably …., I don't remember. It wasn’t even that long ago, but I don’t remember!


And then I got Pitocin. And it was so against my birth plan, but if I hadn't been flexible and especially my husband. I think he gave the supportive spouse that's like”Hey, we have to flow it”. My husband, as soon as he heard the words “still-birth”, we were like “Okay, change the birth plan!”

Care Messer: Well it has to be flexible because babies sometimes they have their own ideas. Babies sometimes come in the car! That's not in our birth plan! But we have to go for it. You know, and that’s….. Things that should go in your birth plan you can definitely search on the internet of what is in a birth plan. That's going to bring up things like you know delayed cord clamping. What is delayed cord clamping? Why would not I want the doctor to clamp it right away? That's going to open your eyes to the baby might need more blood, and that opens up a whole other thing, “You are right and that’s what I want!” You would have not known that if you hadn’t researched it. And if you go through all the procedures and not knowing why is my baby getting eye drops? Do I have an STD? No, then why is my baby getting eye drops? They can see me after birth. There is a lot of information that you will get educated on if you research a birth plan and then keep it super simple. Don't inundate your doctors and nurses because they won't read it and they will laugh at you and that's not what you want. You want to work together with them to get the comfortable birth that you want.

Amy Barnes: Is it like a resume where you should have it beyond one page?

Care Messer: One sheet. Yeah, all my moms have a one sheet birth plan.

Sunny Gault: Small font? Squeeze more in there. Super skinny fonts…..

Care Messer: Nothing smaller than 12 point and we really try and narrow it down because most of the birth plan should be about the baby not about your comfort level. It should be about what’s best for my baby.

Sunny Gault: Right.

Care Messer: And lot of times we forget about that, we are like, we want this, we want this and it’s like, “What about the baby?” Because, it is always safety first. Always safety first with the baby. But it needs to be simple. If it’s too inundated, you are going to lose track. You are going to be in your head and not birthing the way you should, and I think that's why when you said that if you have a rigid plan and it’s not flexible it’s because they have pre- planned and prepared just like they do their work day. And birth’s not like that.

Sunny Gault: Well, I think it sometimes changes, because, like, what I thought be comfortable during labor, was not what I thought. I thought I was going to only walk around and take a hot bath and maybe watch a movie and that's not at all what I wanted. It was just a bonding time with my husband and that I was very different then what I expected in terms of you know wasn't really about my comfort anymore. It was more about the baby. I just I was surprised because in my mind I was like "Oh! This is what I am probably going to want to do". A warm bath sounds so nice. When it came to it, I was like, “No, I don’t want to be in the water.”

Care Messer: And some people just want to be in the water.

Sunny Gault: Yeah.

Care Messer: You got be flexible with everything about birth. But you’ve got to do your research ahead of time, so you know what you want.

Cherri Christiansen : I will be very honest. I’ve been very….,I haven't done this yet and I haven't even been sure if it was something that I was going to do, because, you know, I had this clear idea in my head, so I say I haven't done it. In my head I have a birth plan. On paper, I don’t. And I think part of my concern was kind of what you talking about before, Rachele, is that I didn't want to feel that I made this plan and then if I wasn't able to stick with it, that I was some sort of failure in some way, because, you know, for me, failure of the home birth would be ending up in the hospital and I really, really, really don't want to go to the hospital and so to think about, well do I need to have a backup birth plan? For the…. This is if we go to hospital plan and surrounded by the people I have never met before….

Care Messer: You actually do. Don't ever feel like home birth that didn't take place at home, it is wrong because sometimes babies have to be born in the hospital.

Rachele DeMeo: Yeah.

Care Messer: And that's not a failure on your part, it's a choice on babies part.

Rachele DeMeo: Yeah.

Care Messer: And so you always need to have a back-up plan for the hospital, and you know, and then you won’t use it.

Cherri Christiansen : Okay.

Sunny Gault: That's number one rule, welcome to motherhood. Baby dictates a lot!

Cherri Christiansen : And for a long time afterwards, I would imagine.

Care Messer: And being with mid-wife care it’s a little different than being with OB-care because they do let you, as a women move, roam, whatever you want to do, eat, drink during labor. It's a very hands- off and a very intimate experience. But when you go to the hospital, you are under insurance restraints, etc. It is different, so you have to see first, what's best for the baby, because at that point, you are there as a safety issue. Not because, “Oh, I will just go the hospital. I think I would rather do that!” It is a safety issue for baby. And that’s when it turns to a baby birth plan not hospital birth plan for me.

Cherri Christiansen: Makes sense.

Amy Barnes: And I think too, just knowing, even though you want a home birth and it will probably go just fine, but just having Plan B, planned out, so you are at least aware of the things that will make more comfortable, when and if that happens, versus going…., you know, it, then it’s not a failure. You know, I went for natural, but I had to be open about all the other things I researched them. I think on my birth plan, I even had, you know, if this happen, these are what I want to have happen. So it is just a makes you a little bit more comfortable.

Sunny Gault: Even on this sort of plan, I put if I needed a cesarean and blah, blah, blah, you know, because, even if I don’t think I will need one, I just never know. For all I know, you know, something could go wrong or they might say, “You know what, you’ve been in labor for this long and it is actually dangerous for the baby at this point”, and if , if I really need one. And I think it depends, you know, like you were saying about where you deliver, you know, if they push it or not, you know, I think it is a part of it. I think it's still good to still have options like, if this is an option, then this is what I would prefer.

Care Messer: Well, and you could have a beautiful cesarean. You could have a beautiful cesarean with music in the background. They can dim the lights. The doctor can lower the curtain. It can be beautiful. You can get skin to skin. You can have what you want at a Caesarian. And before you go in there, you let the baby know, “You are coming out the side door not the front door.


‘And it is okay. And you are going with daddy first and you are going to meet this really nice nurse,’” and it calms you down, it calms the baby down, and then you can enjoy the birth and it is not scary.

Amy Barnes: Well, there’s such, I think like this con of caesarians, because, I think, like a couple of DVDs that we’ve watched, the first time we were both pregnant. I think, there is just a flood of information of all the negative things in hospitals, and there’s just negativity about doctors and even mid-wives. And even cesareans and it’s not always like that. It’s like there’s beautiful things that happen because of doctors and because of mid-wives and because of cesareans you know.

Care Messer: Well I think most of the fears that we bring into our birth plan are What if? What if? What if? And we want to resolve the fears because we are educated. It makes our birth plan one page and we are comfortable with whatever happen. Because we know, it's us and the baby doing dance and it’s delicate. You can't plan for it. You go with it, in the moment. And when its instinctual and your are comfortable with it and you are not in your head, you are going to have a beautiful birth anyway.

Amy Barnes: And when you meet the baby, you don't even care about how the baby got there. You are just like “Ahhh!!!”


Sunny Gault: So what do you do if you are in the case like Cherri is? So she wants to have a home birth. So does she have kind of a home birth plan and then, if I have to go to a hospital then there is a vaginal birth plan in the hospital and if we can't do that, then there is a cesarean birth plan, I mean, is there literally three birth plans?

Care Messer: Literally. And when you are home with mid wives they do so much pre-care ahead of time, to know what you want, how you envision things and they are very hands off. So, that really doesn't need to be talked about, because if you don't want the certain shots and all that, there is waivers to sign and they are very hands off about pushing that anyways, it’s not even brought up. And then when it comes to hospital, it's like I have to go to the hospital and get the Petosin for XYZ, then I would still like to be able to move in positions and be near the birth ball and, da, da, da, da…..! So it's nearly the easy way. And then, if a cesarean takes place I choose blah, blah, blah! And it becomes a point where if you have got the right care provider as your back up, you are going to have the kind of birth you want anyway. It's just at a hospital instead. And you still have the mid wifery care afterwards, that will take care of you that will take care of you and give you the same feedback that you had before, which is why you choose a mid wife. So, the home birth one is a lot easier, but you always have to pack up hospital bag and you always have to have a plan B. Always!

Cherri Christiansen: When my mid wife mentioned to me you know, some of the things that would happen, when we do my home visit around 36 weeks and, you know, she’d tell me what to pack for my hospital bag…, and I was like "My hospital bag?! I thought I got off the hook with that one!" And then I realized, and I was like “Okay, that makes sense.” Of course I have to do that, but I think my biggest fear would be, being in a hospital, is of not respecting what’s in the plan and so, you know…., hopeful…..

Sunny Gault : I don't feel like it's like that though. Because I mean, I know, at least from my experience, it wasn't like, you are forced to do this or you are forced to do that. It was like we talk about it.

Rachele DeMeo: Yeah, that's what I experienced too. Like I had in my birth plan: “I don’t want ‘pain’, don’t use the word ‘pain’”. And they were really careful about not to say that. So they were really respectful of…., because again, I was trying to do natural, even when I was at the hospital and I had, you know, what I wanted. And I found that they were really good. And even though I ended in a C-section, it was the perfect birth, I think, you know, for me, the way in hindsight.

Care Messer: And that’s exact….., when you are prepared and educated, that’s how any birth should be. “It was just what I needed. It was just what I wanted. It was how the baby had to come into the world”.

Sunny Gault: A lot of hospitals have a lot of things you’d have at home too. Because, like, you know, when I was in labor I used a birthing ball for some of the time, because I wanted to, and then after a while, she was like, “I don't want you to use the birthing ball!” But they had like…, didn’t have a bath, but they had a shower, where you know, you could get that much of a bath in it, because you could have a little plug. And, so I mean, they have like a lot of things that you would have at home, a lot of comforts at home, you know TV and stuff like that and music and preferences. So, you know, even in your hospital bag you can bring certain…, if you need to, you know, then at least you can bring a Cds or DVDs or things that you might want….

Amy Barnes: That's a good idea.


Care Messer: You might not even need it! But at least if you have it, you are not panicking at the last moment, you know, trying to rush to the hospital and not knowing what you have to bring.

Sunny Gault: Yeah, like dim lights, you know, I had dim lights in my room instead of bright hospital lights and a fan is good, because you get hot….

Care Messer: And I find, that, my moms, their secret to success is bringing chocolate!


Amy Barnes: Oh! It is chocolate for them.

Cherri Christiansen: Isn’t the answer to everything.

Care Messer: In your birth plan, chocolate is for everything!

Amy Barnes: Oh wait, is the chocolate for them? Or for……,

Rachele DeMeo: That’s smart!

Care Messer: For the nurses and the doctors. And that’s, you know, when you, say you have a doctor that has 5 doctors at his practice or her practice, you don't know who you are going to get, then you make a little thing of brownies with a little bow on it, and you take it in, five of them, one for each for one doctor. You present it that way and they are like, “Check this girl out!” It makes them step back. Now, you’ve given them dark chocolate with, you know, nut shoes or whatever, they are your best friend. And that's exactly how it is in the hospital with the nurses because, I mean think about it. That's their job. They are there day-in and day-out. They are tired. They have Winnie women all the time. And you come in with a smile and chocolate, you are a breath of fresh air. And if you forget the chocolate, then you call pizza ahead of time and you say “Pizza will be delivered to the whole floor within 15 minutes!” Oh my gosh, you want to royal treatment? That's how you do it. It’s always about food.

Sunny Gault: That's a really important point, because creating a solid birth plan is one thing, but making sure your plan is put into practice, is a whole other issue and we are going to have more of that when we come back.


Sunny Gault : Alright and we are back! So now that we’ve created our birth plan, what do we do with this? So, Care, what would you recommend? Birth Plan is complete. Do you automatically give it to your health care provider? Where does it go from this point?

Care Messer: Yeah. Hopefully, you’ve created it with your birth companion, because they are going to need to be your advocate and also come with you when you present the plan. Because they have a different filter than you do. As a mom, we are very open to what we want and when we hear maybe that's not going to work, its immediate criticism and then we are bad. And we are very vulnerable in our late pregnancy, especially, and we want everything to be perfect for this baby. So having that extra person with the filter is really good. I know a lot moms who will get their doctors to sign the birth plan, so that when they go into labor, if they are not there, they can say “Well, doctor so and so signed off that I can eat and drink during labor.” “Well I’m sorry, the hospital only lets you……” “Well, the orders are that I can eat and drink during labor and that's what I am requesting.” And on certain things that you, you know, you have already talked about it with your doctor, you don't back down and other things you are flexible with. But you know ,having a baby is like running a marathon. You need your energy. If you are pushing for two and a half hours, you need that energy and you need to eat. With hospitals that have that policy, you know, Birth Centers don’t have that policy and their moms are fine. And they still have some cesareans occasionally and they are not throwing up and dying and all that kind of stuff so ,there are certain things that you can be flexible on and certain things you can't. But you definitely you should have one copy for doctor, that goes in your chart. Definitely several copies for nurses, the nurse that comes in, the nurse that takes over after her, your doula needs one, if you have a doula, or support person. Anybody that surrounds you, needs to have those. You know, some people have 7 copies. I’d rather you have more, than not enough, and I’d rather it already be discussed way ahead of time. You know, if you go and discuss that with your care provider and you getting answers you don't want, you need to look another care provider because you are not going to have the birth you want, not going to have the birth that you picture and you need support during labor and not a fight. That's the one thing that will slow up and stop the cervix from opening, is a fight, because we are mammals and we birth well when we are safe and if we don't feel safe in our environment, I don't care if it is at home, at work, car…..


Babies that come on the highway are my favorite because….

Sunny Gault : Have you ever delivered a baby on the side of the highway?

Care Messer: No, but I’ve come close! You know, with babies that are born that way, and that fast, you can’t screw it up. They know where they need to come out and that’s safe for them and that’s when they are coming. So there’s some great YouTube videos on that, but…….

Cherri Christiansen: Care, you mentioned it is never too early , you know, rather earlier than later to share the birth plan. How early is early? I mean, when…., is there a certain time ……..

Care Messer: You know why? Because the earlier you know where your care provider stands on your wishes, even though you are paying the bill, never mind you, you are the consumer, the easier it is to switch.

Cherri Christiansen: So it’s to give you a chance to make a change if you are not happy with the responses they are giving you.

Care Messer: Well, yeah. And a lot of times moms don't know about home births, they don’t know about Birth Centers. They don't know that there’s even options that they can labor at home. They think, as soon as I feel something, I have to go immediately. As soon as my water breaks, I have to go in. Not necessarily true. And the longer you are at home, laboring, the softer and gentler and the more intimate, like you talked about your intimate experience at home with your husband. That's the way, the way the baby gets in is the way the baby gets out. If you are home and cuddling and relaxed and that's where you’ll open better, than if you are stressed out, nervous and going to a place you don't feel quite safe. And sometimes labor will stop when you get there. And you have to get comfortable, soft and gentle again and then you will start to open up again.

Sunny Gault : You mentioned a birth plan advocate or somebody there, you know, with you. Who should that person be? Just someone that you trust? Does it need to be your spouse or just someone you feel comforta…. It could be your Doula? Right?

Care Messer: It can be your Doula, but Doulas are not advocates as in, we are going to talk to your care provider. We might help you filter it out afterwards and say, “Okay, here’s what I heard, what did you hear?” You know, if you are asking. But if you are going to present a birth plan I would want your birth companion there to present that, not the Doula, because that sets up us in a kind of an awkward spot, like we put you up to something , if the care providers doesn’t like what you have. It should be the two people, whose baby it is, because it is your family. How do you want your birth to go? It's all about you it's not about anybody else.

Amy Barnes: I think that person knows you, in a way like I mean, I ended up getting an epidural, after five and a half hours and I was in so much pain in my mind. I was like "No, I don't want to get an epidural." It makes me feel less, you know, like I should be more like pain tolerant. And husband was like “I can't bear to see you in so much pain.” For five and a half hours with, you know, with like Pitocin's like. You are just miserable! And I’ve told you many times, like the, an analogy he gave me, because we both surf, and he was like, “Well, you can definitely tap it out in cold water and be without a wetsuit and you are not going to die!” And he was like “Or you could have a wetsuit and be more comfortable and have a good memory of surfing day,” and he kind of pushed for the Epidural which I was shocked because I didn’t think he would. And I was so glad that he did that, because as soon as I got an Epidural, my cervix just opened.

Care Messer: Because you are relaxed and weren’t tensing.

Amy Barnes: Because I was so relaxed and for you know, five and a half hours, just being miserable and screaming my head off, I only dilated one centimeter and as soon as I got that Epidural, within an hour it was three. So he…., because your spouse knows you, and so, they are going to tell you, you know, "Hey, this is what I think is better for you," you know, and if, like you said, if it’s your baby, its, that persons baby, you know, both of them.

Care Messer: Yeah, and that’s…, I mean, you guys are making decisions about your family not about what the care provider thinks you should do. It's about what you want to do safely, and why you want to do it. And a birth plan can help get you educated to know what the studies say and what’s best for your family. Because you need to make an educated decision.

Sunny Gault: Alright, well thank you guys. Thanks to all our listeners and a special thanks goes out to Care Messer, our special guest, for all the great information she gave us today. If you want to learn more about Care, her services and projects, simply visit the episode’s page on our website and look for today's topic.


[Featured Segment: Maternity Fashion Trends]

Sunny Gault: Before we wrap today’s show here are some Maternity Fashion Trends.

Krystal Stubendeck: Hello, Preggie Pals. I am Krystal Stubendeck, Maternity Fashion Expert and founder of Borrow for your Bump, where you can buy or rent designer maternity styles for a monthly rate. Today, we are going talk about matching your body type to the perfect dress style for summer. It is challenging enough, dressing your body type, let alone, with a growing bump. You not only want to look fabulous, but you want to feel fabulous too. With four basic body types, we will match a dress style that will flatter and accentuate all the right places, especially for the up-coming summer months, that are full of weddings, showers and barbeques.

The first body type is a triangle. Which is when your hips are wider than your shoulders. The perfect dress match for a triangle body is an empire waist-line that sits directly under the bust and above the bump. A long and flowing strapless maxi dress which takes the attention to the center of the body, creating more of a balance. The key is to make sure the dress is loose and flowing towards the bottom. Whether it hits above the knee or above the ankle. We liked the Zora Maxi Dress by Nam, which is strapless and will show off the assets on top, while covering up a wider bottom half. As an inverted triangle, your shoulders or bust are actually larger than your hip. This is a chance to actually show off those shoulders with an Asymmetric dress style. Hiding the shoulders under a sleeve dress can make you appear larger and with a one-shoulder number, you will create a balance. For a more formal occasion, we like the Asymmetrical sequined dress by Seraphine.

For a more casual occasion, avoid spaghetti straps and choose styles with wider straps, like the Braided Halter Dress by Maternal America. An hour-glass body type is when your shoulders and hips are around the same size and you have a defined waist. The best dresses to fit this shape are pieces that hug, not hide your curves and growing bump. A perfect match is the Stripped Maxi Dress by Nam, or if you like a little more coverage around the arms, there is the grey and white striped Teresa Maxi Dress by Nam. The final body type is the rectangular shape, where your shoulders, bust and hips are similar in size and you lack a defined waist. With this, try and create an hour-glass figure with Empire waist or side rousing. Also, try using materials that are fitting which will flatter your bump. Our recommendation is the Sophie dress by Nam, which is available in charcoal or black colors. This style is perfect for almost any occasion and the cap sleeves create a soft look. A belt can also be added to many dress styles, to create flattering curves to an otherwise straight waist. Overall, remember you are beautiful, no matter what your body type. Embrace your assets and balance your frame with a dress style which will flatter and make you feel sexy. Don’t forget to check out our summer dress styles mentioned at and be sure to look through the PreggiePals for more great pregnancy tips.


Sunny Gault: That wraps up our first episode of Preggie Pals. If you have a pregnancy topic and if you like to suggest, we would love to hear it. You can visit our website at and send us an email through the contact link. If you have any questions about today's show or the topics we’ve discussed, call our Preggie Pals Hotline 619-866-4775 and we’ll answer your questions on an upcoming episode. Coming up next week, we are talking about The Natural Cesarean, which many women have never even heard of before. But it's an option for cesarean births that encourages more immediate skin-to-skin time between mom and baby and just an overall, more natural approach to C-Sections. But it's also, a little bit controversial. So we are going to speak with an OBGYN here in San Diego, who offers this options for his moms-to-be. Thanks for listening to Preggie Pals. Your Pregnancy, Your Way.

[Medical Disclaimer]

This has been a New Mommy Media production. Information and Material contained in this episode are presented for educational purposes only. Suggestions and opinions expressed in this episode are not necessarily those of New Mommy Media and should not be considered facts. Both information and materials are related to be accurate. It is not intended to replace or substitute for professional, medical and advisor care. And it should not be used for diagnosing or treating house care problems or disease or prescribing any medication. If you have questions or concerns regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your baby, please receive assistance from a qualified health care provider.

[00:32:46] End Of Audio

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