Family Class

Today Y and I went to the hospital for a “Family Class”.  As it was scheduled from 1:30p.m. until 4p.m., we asked SIL to take care of the children so they didn’t get bored.  In retrospect, it may have been quite fun for them since we were sitting on the floor in a big hall, practicing bathing and clothing babies and watching my husband try on a weighted preggy belly (this was one of the main reasons I wanted to go).  Despite not being a first time mother, the midwife wasn’t condescending and I felt that I learned or more accurately, was reminded about, a lot of things.

We had a tour around the hospital while Y was wearing his fake belly.  He said later that his feet hurt from the weight, but I really don’t think it was enough for such a short space of time.  I regret not asking him to sit down, and heave himself up/pick things up from the floor, etc.  But anyway, it was something at least.  The midwife taught helpful massage techniques for the birthing partner, which I felt did actually help, except my husband is more of the Chinese school of massage, so I had to stop him more than a few times for fear that he would actually break something.

The hospital has no specific school of thought for labour techniques, but they claim to use a mixture of lamaze and sophrology.  My previous hospital advocated sophrology, but I didn’t really find it ALL that helpful.  But the midwife today said that they are open to any techniques and CDs that we want to bring in from home.  I love this about my new place.  The open-mindedness is very calming.

So I was very happy for the midwife to not only acknowledge my existence (my husband often gets talked to over me seeing as I’m foreign), but to actively ask me questions and make me feel like a normal human being.  Even after I made a small language error in my introduction to the group and instead of saying that it was my third child, I said something which sounded as if I’d like to order/eat three children…

She asked if our younger children would be present at the birth.  Now to be honest, I’ve always found this a strange concept, but it’s fairly common here, and people seem to do it quite often.  My biggest concern is that it would be scary for them to see me as a possessed woman writhing about like Regan in the Exorcist (and I’m worried that my language won’t be much better than hers either).  My other concerns however, are mostly selfish ones.  I think they might irritate me.  My husband irritates me when I’m in labour.  I almost don’t want him there.  I want it to be quiet.  My children aren’t usually quiet.

But in spite of these concerns, the idea of it is growing on me little by little.  I think if I ask MIL or SIL to be there too (one of them would be looking after H and L at home anyways), then they could take them outside the room if they got bored/frightened/tired or if I got stressed out.  It would be quite nice for them to be there to greet the new baby straight away.  Something to think about..hopefully not for much longer though, although I’m trying not to rush things along too much because it really could be another two or three weeks yet…

Our baby..weighing 3 kilos that felt more like 5…

I think I’ve connected, even though it’s turned out to be a boy…

The belly (and boobs)

Walking around the hospital was a little embarrassing…

Menu for straight after birth is a little lighter than the norm, only 1600 calories
Ok, this is the “normal” menu at 1900 calories…when an average for a woman not breastfeeding is 2000 calories, it’s easy to see why lots of women can’t seem to get enough milk out…

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12 thoughts on “Family Class

  1. Hi, I feel a bit like a weird stalker saying this, but I think we’ve met in the K-A group. Thanks for your blog, it’s great.
    I love that plastic baby, what a cutie. I knew a guy who attended his brother’s birth when he was ten, and he was really grateful for the experience. Must be harder to decide for younger kids. Good luck with it all!

    • Stalk away 😉 I’ve decided, and the children are happy with it too, that I’ll labour with just my husband and we’ll call MIL/SIL at the start of the second stage to bring the children to the hospital. It’s a half an hour drive, so I doubt they’ll make it in time to see baby actually being born, but they’ll be able to greet her straight away afterwards. I think if they were a bit older it might be easier too. They will probably just get bored.

  2. you’ll have to stash a few extras in your hospital bag to help see you through 🙂 Love the tummy and boob vest. I reckon hospitals should loan these out for like a week at a time – so husbands can understand to the full extent what having all that does to your daily routine. I love that you’ve bonded to the plastic baby so well. I think he looks like he’s quite happy with you as his mum too 🙂

    • Hee hee, YES! The vest would definitely be appreciated on a longer basis. And the great part is that it fastens up at the back too…much harder to take off by yourself 😉

  3. I understand where you’re coming from, but I’ve only ever found hospitals doing either epidurals or nothing here in Gunma at least. I had an epidural with my first birth, which wasn’t topped up properly, leading to lying flat on my back with back to back contractions alone with my husband as the hospital was busy that night. I ended up with low blood pressure, fetal distress, an episiotomy and a ventouse delivery, which I really think was due to the epidural. It might be nice if they offered gas and air, but after the botched up epidural, I’m really ok without drugs.

      • I’m sure when I’m in labour I’ll be asking for drugs at some point XD but I also find it easier when they don’t have any. It takes away the doubt, don’t you think? You kind of just have to do it. And they say that drugs don’t affect the baby, but H was really really groggy after she was born. It was traumatic for her though, so it could have been that, but the likelihood of epidurals going hand in hand with assisted deliveries seem to be too high for it to be co-incidence.

  4. Ha ha, yes, I’m trying not to think about the pain now it’s nearing. But to be honest, I’m so fed up of being pregnant that even the pain is seeming quite welcome.

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