26 weeks pregnant and it’s a pretty delightful time for most women … even those who have some health issues. Before we get into the nitty-gritty of the common childbirth conversation as detailed by What To Expect and Baby Center we need to address this issue of ‘low’ and ‘high’ risk.
Without a doubt, the greatest concern any pregnant woman and expectant father has is a ‘problem’. You may have one or many health issues that came before you fell pregnant. Perhaps other ‘problems’ have arisen during your pregnancy. Your unborn baby may have some known problems. And between now and The Birth you or your baby might develop more ‘problems’. Problems may also arise during or after The Birth.
Birthing Better families want to add at 26 weeks pregnant:
- Pregnancy and childbirth are inherently safe and unsafe!
Here are the issues around problems or risk factors surrounding you and your baby at 26 weeks pregnant.
- Any recognized ‘problem’ to you or baby will increase the number of assessments, monitoring, and procedures (AMPs) … often called ‘interventions’.
- There is no, or very little, a correlation between any problem or number of problems that hinder any woman’s ability to get a baby out of her body effectively or a baby’s ability to be born.
- There is no correlation between the number of problems of either mother or baby that impact the ability of a woman to cope and manage her response to labor pains.
- The obstetrical model considers birth to be ‘unsafe’ unless proven otherwise. OBs, disregard the fact that women with lots of risks can birth very easily. She might do that with lots of AMPs but ask any OB and they will tell you that birthing easily is not related to risk factors.
- The midwifery model considers birth ‘safe’ unless proven otherwise. But midwives really never address two issues … that very healthy women can have lots of trouble getting a baby out of her body even if she has no medical risk or whether a woman copes with the natural occurring pain of contractions.
- There is no generic ‘problem’. If you are not pregnant with twins, you do not have any potential twin problems. If you have a baby with genetic ‘problems’ you can still birth well and cope beautifully. If you have a ‘problem/s’ then ask your obstetrician (OB) or midwife if and how this problem might impact your ability to birth effectively or cope.
- If you or your baby’s problem requires you to have a non-laboring Cessarean then you can still be highly skilled!
- Your birth and birth-coaching skills can help you birth more effectively and cope better.
- On to the next … Birth Plans
Birth Plans were suggested in the late 1970s. When I gave birth in 1970 there were no Birth Plans and no ‘choices’. What does ‘choice’ mean?
- It means you are discussing with your OB or midwife what AMPs you are comfortable with. In other words, you are telling them what ‘interventions’ you want and don’t want.
- You also get to discuss the more cosmetic things such as whether you want to play music, have your whole family around or be able to birth in water.
- Your Birth Plan is about your image of your coming birth.
Notice in the Baby Center post on 26 weeks pregnant it says that ‘In a BabyCenter poll about birth plans 54 percent of those who responded said their plan was irrelevant once actual labor started. “My birth plan pretty much went out the window once I got to the hospital’.
- Birth Plans as wish list
That 54% say their Birth Plan went out the window tells us:
- What you’re learning in childbirth education classes are not teaching you how-to birth!
- Too often Birth Plans fail and then what? This leads to a huge increase in TABS … trauma after birth syndrome that includes shame, blame, guilt, anger, disappointment, and depression.
- No woman can ever ‘plan’ the birth she has. Birth is totally unknown until it unfolds. Sure you may know that you’re planning to labor and have a vaginal birth. That might happen but not in the way you imagined. You might plan that type of birth and due to reasons have a non-laboring Cesarean.
You might be planning an elective c-section but have an entirely different experience than you thought it would be. You never know what your birth will be like, so it’s impossible to actually ‘plan’ it .
- Your second Birth Plan … full of skills
If you’re using skills to prepare your pregnant body to give birth and will begin to learn birth and birth-coaching skills, then you need to write a Skills-based Birth Plan. Here are other reasons:
- Your conventional Birth Plan tells your OB or midwife or doula what you ‘want’ and ‘don’t want’. In other words, what you want from them.
- Your skills-based Birth Plan tells those same people what skills you and your partner will and should be using. In other words, what they will see you ‘do’ or how you will behave.
- Make your skills-based Birth Plan as soon as you start to learn skills and add to it over the next 14 weeks. This becomes your guide that you refer to during The Birth
At 26 weeks pregnant here are the resources in LESSON THREE of The Birthing Better Complete Birth Skills. Check out all the lessons.
READ: The best time to start is from 24 weeks onward so you can learn in a relaxed manner. If you’re 40+ weeks you’re just more motivated, so pick and choose what skills to learn right now. Read the eBook about where you want to birth and then read the eBook about where you don’t want to birth. If you’re birthing out of hospital please read the eBook on transferring to hospital. YOU absolutely have to learn why and how to use your skills when faced with that challenge. Your baby’s birth is worth your effort and your baby deserves your total involvement.
- PDF: Hospital Birth – 29 pages
- PDF: Home Birth – 22 pages
- PDF: Birth Center Birth – 8 pages
- PDF: Unassisted/Free Birthing – 9 pages
- PDF: Transfer to Hospital – 11 pages
Birthing Better skills were developed by moms and dads in the early 1970s in the US and used by many thousands globally in all types of birth. Birthing Better online birthing classes are housed in Common Knowledge Trust.