Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Two down, two to go

We went to our childbirth-education class on Saturday, then to an infant safety/CPR class last night. Now, we'll have a couple of weeks off, then a class on breastfeeding and another on parenting the newborn. We'll be experts! Ha.

In my opinion, the all-day childbirth-education extravaganza is the way to go (ie, instead of weekly sessions). I think I would have started to dread it if I had to do it every week for six weeks, but in this case we only had to get up the energy once. And it wasn't so bad. The nurse who was doing it was very competent, and she was debuting a brand-new PowerPoint, with brand-new videos in it. I was a little disappointed to miss out on the 1970s videos that so many of my friends all across the country have seen, but I appreciated the up-to-date nature of this. And the nurse communicated an approach that was anti-interventionist in many ways - low rate of episiotomies, etc. - which also seemed very sensible. That having been said, someone in my prenatal aquatics class went to a 'childbirth refresher' session at the very same hospital, and that nurse was cesarean- and induction-happy. So who knows. The highlight of the videos was seeing one woman with these incredibly gnarly stretch marks all over her belly - they were vertical and looked like flames.

The class itself was about half professional people in their 30s and half people who appeared to be unmarried and were between 16 and 20. There was one young married couple who didn't fit into either group. It was hard to be snarky, even internally, about the teenaged couples, since their lives are obviously not going all that well. I felt particularly sorry for one girl who was with a guy who was a bona-fide half-wit. Of the thirtysomething professionals, there was one extremely earnest man who was going to be a stay-at-home dad. When asked what he had liked most about his wife's pregnancy, he said that he was looking forward to reinventing himself as a "homemaker." He was one of those people who are so sincere and kind that you probably couldn't hang out with them for more than 10 minutes.

At the end of the class, we went on a tour of the labor and delivery and mother and baby units. Holy crap - they were nice! Hardwood floors (or faux hardwood, I suppose, given all the leakage that must occur), sleeper sofas for the partners, whirlpool tubs, DVD/CD players, internet access, etc. The M&B unit had double beds, too. They were all like hotel rooms, aside from the medical equipment discreetly hidden in closets or - I kid you not - behind paintings. The food will still be awful, though.

The infant safety/CPR class was taught by two nurses, one of whom was an IVF nurse. She hugged me when she saw me and remembered I'd had hyperemesis - nice memory for someone at a large IVF clinic. The other woman had just been certified as a lactation consultant, so I grilled her after class about how I can get help if I need it post-delivery. She was also very nice, although she had an incredibly irritating habit of saying "make for sure" instead of "make sure" - e.g., "make for sure that you babyproof your house." Anyway, the class was fairly useful, although I'm not sure (or for sure!) that I am a CPR expert just yet.

What else? The baby is still breech and still wiggles, punches, and head-butts a great deal. Sitting is sometimes hard when his little head is pressed up into my ribs. I'm definitely a bit more tired than I was a few weeks ago, and I am very conscious of time flying by. We still don't have a name picked out. Nor do we have a rocking chair/glider, swaddling wraps, a new roof, or childcare lined up. Apparently, I should have been on daycare waiting lists before I was pregnant. Yeah, like any infertile is going to jinx herself by doing that.

Tomorrow: my 34-week OB appointment.


OHN said...

I am ditching work today..a girl has to catch up on blogs ya know~anyway, it sounds like you are READY. I am quite impressed with how organized you are.

Isn't the pleasure of having a head or foot stuck in your lung just a GREAT TIME? My wiggler came out wiggling and at 16 still hasnt stopped moving :)

Mary Ellen and Steve said...

Congrats on 34 weeks! It sounds like you are ready to go!

Jane said...

Wow, you're really on the homestretch. It's so exciting!! Sounds like you're as ready as you can be.

I wonder if anyone ever leaves a CPR class, infant or otherwise, feeling like they could actually call up what they learned in the event of an emergency. I know that I never have. Maybe when the adrenaline kicks in, it all comes flooding back. Did you at least get to watch the goofy Red Cross video with the harrowing re-enactment of the grandparents whose infant granddaughter stops breathing while they're babysitting her? It totally freaked me out -- and inspired me to give my parents and in-laws an impromptu infant CPR lesson at Thanksgiving.

Gallaudet said...

Actually, the food where you're delivering isn't half bad. They have a special a la carte menu for the post-partum unit and, I kid you not, you can call down any time and order whatever you want. I lived on cheesecake and raspberry smoothies for two days and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Don't worry about the CPR. The trick is to push and breath in some combination, and dial 911 as soon as you can.

Emmie said...

I'm glad things are going so well, even if the little guy is breech and nameless. Don't worry-you've got time!

H and I took all the same classes you've lined up. I do hope you get to see the 70's video on breastfeeding in which the new mom, complete with coifed Bar.bie hair, is wearing pearls as her infant happily feeds beneath her cashmere twinset.