Last evening the Beloved Mister & I attended our first childbirth education class, a curriculum based in large part on the Bradley Method, and conceived by one of the former midwives in our practice and a woman who birthed with them twice. The latter, Angela, teaches the six week course and as we learned, her sister, who just had a baby in the last six weeks, is one of our neighbors just down and across the street.
Prior to attending class, we supped together on bacon, eggs & toast and my Mister felt Ziggy's fist raised & shaking for might so as to smote the man.
Anticipating that we'd be the oldest in the class, we were surprised to see two other couples who seem close to our age, and of course there was dear young Em, whose mum Evelyn came along in Em's husband's stead, as he's completing clinical rotation for the nursing program prior to graduating in a couple weeks. There were seven couples in all.
After having filled out some brief paperwork on stats, we women were asked to write our ideal birthing situation with all details and of course, I took that quite literally. My Mister kept peeking at my "novella" and declaring, "Don't tell me, you're used to being paid by the word."
Smartass Mr. Booty.
Angela took up our papers and then went 'round the circle for each woman to introduce herself, her partner and tell a bit about her pregnancy, life, ideal birth experience and so on. We're all midwife patients, and not surprisingly, most of us want to have a natural birth with as little intervention as is possible. When Angela got to our turn, she announced that most ideal birth experience passages on folks' papers simply stated that they wanted to a) be at the hospital or b) avoid hospital intervention, but that Ms. Booty's described a home birth right down to the exact sheets she wanted on the bed. A fact which, of course, drew a hearty laugh from the room, none more so than from Ms. Booty's little corner.
Em, being Em, does not want to die. That's her truest fear. And while I don't share it, I'm glad she can give voice to it so honestly.
One couple is having a high risk pregnancy, as she has lupus. One couple says they haven't thought much about the birth as it's stressful and she gets overly emotional, so afraid is she of the pain.
Many, like me, wish for homebirth in their ideal world, but will be birthing elsewhere (hospital or birthing center) for one reason or another. In our group, there are four girl babes and three boy babes, all expected between September 13 and October 2. Only two couples are completely set on a name.
After the full round of getting to know one another a bit better and some discussion on how the class will proceed the next several weeks, we tucked away with our pillows into our respective pairs for relaxation exercises, which included simulated contraction discomfort by way of a clothespin clipped to the women's ears.
My Mister took the liberty of "peaking" my "contractions" by giving the pin an extra squeeze.
Once home and settled in for the night, I slept the sleep of the innocent.