Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Childbirth Preparation Class

We started the Childbirth Preparation Class at NYU Medical Center last night.

Our class is 5 Mondays from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. There were 9 couples total (including us). It looked like all were married. Definitely an interesting mix of people - seemed to be all middle class and in their 30's or so. Of course there was the one woman who was very into having natural childbirth and creating a perfect birth plan but without annoying the doctors and nurses. There was one woman who raised her hand anytime the teacher asked a question. One guy just nodded his head for pretty much the entire class. One guy said that this was not his first child, but his wife shot him a death look, obviously none-too-pleased that he offered up that information.

The first class was interesting and educational. We mostly talked about what are the signs that labor is beginning and why it's best to stay at home until you get to active labor - which is partly because the hospital won't admit you until then anyway. There was discussion of where to enter the hospital and where to go and what to expect. And we learned 2 breathing techniques - slow deep breathing for contractions during early and into active labor and faster shallower breathing for the later part of active labor and into transition. Then we watched a video about the stages of labor and birth.

Overall I felt like I learned some things and so far the class has added to my comfort level around the whole process. Not sure how they can keep it worthwhile for another 4 classes, but we'll see how it goes. I know one class will include a tour of the facilities - labor and delivery rooms and the nursery and such. And one class is about infant care. So I guess there are really only 2 more classes on the process and breathing and such.

I have my 30 week doctor's visit this afternoon. We'll be meeting Dr. Shah. She's the newest and youngest member of the OB/GYN practice we go to. I'm sure it will be fine to see another doctor and maybe even helpful to get another perspective.

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