Posted by: birdsandsquirrels | November 18, 2009

childbirth class

Last weekend, S and I spent a lot of time at our hospital’s childbirth preparation class. I wish I could say it was helpful. It was actually quite irritating. First of all, being in a room with ten other pregnant couples nearly gave me a panic attack. It seems that many of the babies were surprises, and it made me feel resentful of having to go through all that we did to get here. Who knows, maybe one or two of the other couples struggled to conceive as well, but nobody talked about it. I always wondered if the pain of IF would go away once (if) we were able to conceive, but no. I still feel like a freak, and I’m angry that I have been nervous and anxious throughout this pregnancy, unlike the blissfully ignorant couples around us those days.

The couple we got paired with aren’t due until the end of February, and they finished their nursery months ago. She seemed shocked that we weren’t ready still, and it was all I could do to not to make some comment that something could still happen and the baby could die, because it happens, babies die. Shit happens. Bad things happen to good people. But really, there was no reason to ruin her day.

The instructor was a very nice woman, but she repeated things over and over and over. She would talk about something, we would watch part of a video, and then go over everything again, AND AGAIN, as if we were idiots. I understand that different people learn differently, but this was ridiculous. It might have been informative if you were an alien from another planet who had no idea how humans give birth. When people did ask questions, it became clear that she really didn’t know much. She was very clearly anti-epidural, while trying to sound like she had no opinion either way.

S missed watching the football game and was in a bad mood and constantly checking his blackberry for score updates. We debated not going back after lunch, but we had our pillows and blanket in the room. It would have been more useful and less waste of time if they would just let you borrow or rent the dvd that they show. That was the only informative thing for me. I wanted to see actual gory birth, the stuff they don’t show on A Baby Story. I wanted to see what delivery of the placenta looked like, and that sort of thing. She didn’t even really go through breathing techniques much. I am very glad we hired our doula!

At almost 35 weeks, I am definitely feeling more uncomfortable, but at the same time, I am not ready for this to be over! I’m getting sad that I only have 5 or so more weeks of being pregnant. I love feeling the baby move. I love that I have been lucky enough to experience this. I don’t know if I will ever get to be pregnant again, and I want to savor every minute left. Even the times when I can barely walk after getting out of bed to go pee for the 6th time that night. Even the sharp pain in my pelvis that I get when I walk up and down the stairs. I’ll miss the waddling and the comfy maternity clothes. I’ll miss this special time preparing for her arrival. Of course, I am so curious about this little person and I can’t wait to meet her too. It’s a strange yet wonderful place to be.

Question – when should I start washing baby clothes? I haven’t washed a single thing. Is it still too early? I haven’t taken the tags off a single item of baby clothing. Everything from the pack n play to the breastfeeding pillow are still in their packaging/boxes. Blankets are still bundled up with tags.

The nursery is still unfinished. Nothing on the walls, no curtains. We have the crib and glider and ottoman set up, but we still need to move a dresser in there and set up the changing area. The closet is packed with my craft and sewing stuff. I should take a picture and post my progress. Maybe I just need some people to be accountable to.



  1. That class sounds incredibly irritating. I know exactly how you feel — like a “different” pregnant person, so far from the state of ignorant bliss others are in. But I say take those tags off the clothes and wash them. Though it seems scary to take these assured steps toward readying yourself for your baby, I bet you’ll feel more confident and relaxed knowing these things are getting done…I bet you’re spending more time thinking about them when they’re undone and maybe that is more stressful?

  2. I am so behind on the child birth class stuff. Supposedly the hospital I’m using offers free childbirth classes to women that plan to deliver there, but then no one knows when they are offering classes! And I wonder how useful they will be too. Have you watched The Business of Being Born yet? It’s available to watch instantly on netflix? It’s interesting and surprisingly un gory and you still don’t get to see any placentas come out but worth a watch.

    I don’t really know, but if you think you have most of the baby clothes and blankets you’ll get it seems like anytime is a good time to wash. If your cervix starts making progress, I’d definitely hurry up and wash then too. Don’t leave too much for right at the end because you might start to feel overwhelmed and stressed.

    Un pack some baby stuff when you get some time and have fun setting it up. Pack and plays are a little trickier than they look.

  3. I found the childbirth classes very irrelevent with my son. Because, once you get there, your whole birth plan/what you were intending to do/not do goes out the window.
    It’s better to just go with the flow, so to speak.
    both of my labor experiences were nothing like I expected. The latter for obvious reasons.

    as for the baby clothes, I would only wash a few outfits. You don’t know how big/small the baby will be and some of the outfits won’t get worn. Pick two outfits and put them into your hospital bag, the rest you can wash later. (or have Dh do it)

  4. Childbirth classes are usually a waste of time! That’s why I didn’t go.
    And start getting ready!!! You only have 5 maybe 6 weeks to go!!!

  5. Sounds like a sucky class. I’m trying out hypnobirthing instead, so I hope it works!
    RE baby clothes – I’d leave tags/labels on until you know how big the baby is and how fast she’s growing. I’ve often heard of how people regret washing it all ahead of time, when the baby only fit in the newborn stuff for a week, or was in the 3mo sizes within a month.
    And she won’t notice the nursery for ages – as long as you have a safe place for her to sleep, that’s all you really need!

  6. This cracks me up. We went to our classes too however I was just starting to get really sick at that time and we only lasted like 2 hours on the second day. I was so mad cause I had so many questions I could not ask cause we had to leave. It was horrible. Our instructor was awesome though and she was actually the one who was our nurse the day Annika was born. Funny how things work out I guess 🙂 lol

    Coming from an IF couple it’s normal to feel a little different when around those that concieved naturally. However, I felt more prepared and thankful and grateful for our little miracle growing inside of me than I did uncomfortable. If, that makes any sense.

    Just enjoy what you so deserve to right now. She will be here before you know it and it will not make any difference how she got to that point just thatyour miracle is there in your arms and she is all YOURS! It’s the most amazing feeling you will ever know. I promise you that. You will not think so much aboutmissing her move in your belly when you are watching her every move up close and in person every day. kee kee kee

    Good luck these last 5 weeks. You will do AWESOME! Looking forward to hearing the news when your little one arrives 🙂

    Take care.

  7. We are both putting off registering, neither of us wants to sit in a room full of Breeders. Ugh. NIGHTMARE. I think you could maybe wash a teeny bit and then hold off till you see what the baby fits it. They are right, that some babies just don’t fit in stuff and then you have a ton of clothes you can’t use and can’t return. Maybe wash stuff that will definately fit, like those sleeper sack things with the drawstring? But baby laundry is so tiny that in reality, it would be what? Two or three loads? Not too bad.

  8. Hey Birds:

    I just read in Fit Pregnancy that there is a link between PCOS and low breastmilk supply (I was not previously aware of this — in fact, it never occurred to me that PCOS would have any impact on nursing). I’m just curious — are you planning to nurse (feel free to decline to answer if that is too personal)? I just dug around on the Internet a bit and it seems like some PCOS women do just fine, about a third have an undersupply issue and another third have an oversupply issue. I plan to raise it with my doctor on Monday, but I was just curious if this has played into your own plans about nursing at all, or if you’d asked your own doc about it. I guess my attitude is that I’ll give it a shot, and if I end up formula feeding it’s certainly not the end of the world. But of course it’s something else now to think about…sigh.


  9. I heard that PCOS can affect milk supply as well. But I am not gonna panic. They work or they don’t. But my nutritionist said the most important thing to remember is that liquid makes liquid, so 12 glasses a day while breastfeeding.

  10. Hey Birds! Just read the post and I think it’s time to get hopping on the nursery and clothes and stuff. I know bad things can happen and babies certainly do die sometimes, but at this point your odds of have a premature baby who not only survives, but comes home with you are much, much greater than anything else happening. If that does happen, you will regret not having everything set up. If you don’t have the carseat installed, start there. I had my baby at 34 weeks and she was home in 2 weeks and we had to really scramble to get everything done in time. Good luck!

  11. you know i was the queen of procrastination!!! you really only need to have the car seat ready to go. everything else kind of works itself out. seriously!! 🙂

    my kids are 9 weeks old and i am still trying to get stuff in order. i spend a lot of time undoing some of the stuff that i did before: changing drawers around, reorganizing clothes, etc. it’s probably a good idea to wash some stuff so that you don’t have to do it later….but otherwise? seriously! don’t stress!!! enjoy the last few weeks!


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