God is the madwoman in the attic.
I'm camped out on the threshold with my journal, camera, and plenty of snacks.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

childbirth class

We had our first childbirth class on Monday night. I was nervous, because I'm uncomfortable meeting new people, and I didn't know how to get to the class location, but also hugely because the class meant that labor and delivery are getting closer and I've been snuggling down into a nice cosy bed of denial about that.

It was great. I'm glad to be doing it and looking forward to next Monday night's class.

The first part of the class was knowledge. We had some visual aids about the changes in mom's body, recapped the signs & challenges of pregnancy, and identified nutritional and exercise means to support mom's & baby's health. I felt reassured about the habits I've been practicing during the pregnancy, especially walking, and got some tips to boost my nutrition for this last stretch.

The last part of the class time was reserved for breathing and relaxation practices. I've been looking forward to learning this. I want to build up some body memory for when emotions and sensation make it hard to remember things I've read or heard. I also wanted time to practice with L. But what surprised me was how good it felt to do this with him. To lean on him. To have his hands on my head, my shoulders, my back... To breathe together. We got into our own space. And I felt like each of the other pairs on the floor in that room were experiencing the same kind of intimacy and privacy that we were.

When we got home L told me that he really enjoyed it too. He said it felt like a date. It really did! And it's carried into the rest of the week. I'm so grateful for this class.

Prepared Childbirth, the Family Way is the book used for our class. You can check it out here: http://thefamilyway.com/handbookpage.html

We're also using the Pocket Doula, which L refers to as "his little book." It's perfect for him - bullet point lists and plenty of photo illustrations. A good guide for when the emotions and activity of the moment make all that stuff you learned hard to access. Take a look at it here: http://www.gracewindsperinatal.com/the-pocket-doula/

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