Birth Plan of Eric and Megan D.
For our twins, Christian Peter (Twin A) and Aaron Spencer (Twin B)
Thank you for participating in the birth of our two children, Christian Peter and Aaron Spencer, and for taking the time to read and understand our wishes for this birth process. This birth will be a bittersweet experience for us in the most dramatic sense we can imagine, as one of our twins, Christian, has been diagnosed with anencephaly. Because of this, we are faced with the excitement of twin births, and the grief of the death of one of our children. We ask that you acknowledge both babies as our cherished sons through this experience. Knowing that Christian has a fatal condition has not created desire in us to focus solely on Aaron. Rather, we hope to take advantage of any opportunity to know and love both babies, and Christian’s condition creates an urgency for that in his case. In helping us during his birth, we ask that you see beyond the physical and tragic aspects of our one child’s existence, and provide for us the same excellent care as usual, recognizing our need for time to grieve alone, and with the family. Thank you for helping us through this difficult time.
Of utmost importance are that Megan and Eric are present and conscious for all aspects of this birth process. Under no circumstances, except in an instance threatening to her life or Aaron’s life, should Megan be placed under general anesthesia.
We ask for as much privacy from other patients and unnecessary personnel as possible throughout our time at the hospital.
We ask that you refer to our sons by their given names: Christian (Twin A) and Aaron (Twin B).
We prefer to deliver both babies vaginally. Megan would like to retain as much mobility as possible to facilitate birth.
In preparation for a possible caesarean birth, Megan would like regional anesthesia, administered via the epidural. Recognizing that we may have little, if any, time to spend with Christian while he is alive, it is critical that Megan be as awake and alert as possible, so that she may experience as much time with him as possible.
In the event of a vaginal birth, Megan would like a “walking epidural” for pain blocking.
In the event of a caesarean birth Megan would like regional anesthesia administered via the epidural. Recognizing that we may have little, if any, time to spend with Christian while he is alive, it is critical that Megan be as awake and alert as possible so that she may experience as much time with him as possible.
We ask that a nurse⁄technician give family members and friends who are waiting updates during the labor.
We ask that Megan’s mother, Alice, be allowed to join as while Christian is still alive.
If Christian passes away before he is born, we do not wish to be told that news prior to the birth.
In the event that Christian is stillborn, we would like to hold him.
To soften the impact of Christian’s condition, we prefer that Christian’s hat be placed on him immediately after birth, and that he then be placed on Megan’s chest and cleaned there.
Megan will attempt to breastfeed both babies.
When Aaron is born, we request that he also be placed immediately on Megan’s chest and cleaned there.
Eric will cut the umbilical cord of each child.
If the diagnosis is correct and Christian is anencephalic, we desire only comfort measures for him.
We would like both children to be kept with us, together, at all times possible.
Knowing time is of the essence, we would like a baptism for Christian to be performed by our pastor after Christian and Aaron are born. Megan’s mother will also be present at this time. NOTE– If Christian appears to be in distress and will not survive long, we request that the attending nurses and doctors perform minimal clean-up on Megan from the delivery to facilitate this timely dedication. Once the ceremony is ended, the pastor and grandmother will leave the room and the medical personnel will finish with Megan.
We request that the hospital take pictures of both children, first of Christian, then of Christian and Aaron together, then of Aaron.
We would like to make feet and hand molds of both children.
We would like to make feet and hand impressions using paint on fabric of both children.
We will supply outfits for each child.
Others involved in the birth – Megan’s mother and our pastor
(reprinted by permission from Caring Notes, a publication of National SHARE)