Saturday, February 18, 2006

baby school, part one

We’re taking a childbirth class. We’ve had two sessions as of now. Here are my thoughts so far:

Session One

*When you walk into a room full of new people, who are all equally unfamiliar to each other, do you not smile at the other people? Don’t you make a little contact, like, hey, I see you, person…? It looks like we’ll be in this class together. See, I do. And most people give you a little something back, a little smile or a hello. But one lady didn’t. She left me hanging, a couple of times. And when that happens I get all sniffy inside, like, are we going to have a problem?

*We all go around and say our names and when our baby’s coming and where we’re having it and who’s our caregiver, and also we’re supposed to mention a non-baby-related passion of ours. Except for me and Dave, this is a room full of snowboarding gardeners. Like, to a one.

*….Oh, yeah. It looks like we are going to have a problem. When we went around and talked about ourselves, I said that we were going to have the baby at home. What I did NOT say was anything remotely to the effect of, “And anyone who doesn’t is a fucking SUCKER. Home births are for champions, hospitals are for PUSSIES, pussies!” A little later, Miss No-Smile-For-You is talking about what she wants for her birth, and she looks right at me with this dirty look and says, “…Home birth is right for SOME PEOPLE but not EVERYONE is going to want to do it that way.” Aw, snap. She told me!

*Break time is awkward! I can’t seem to smoothly get into a conversation with anybody except Dave. I alternate between hiding my face in the baby photos on the wall, and tentatively trying to open out my body language so as to welcome conversation. Nothing happens. First day of school sucks!

*The teacher, though, is great. More about her later.

*Towards the end of class, she leads us in a relaxation exercise and guided visualization. The thing is, as I’m one of the two farthest-along women in the class, getting into a comfortable position isn’t something that I can pull off very quickly. So by the time the relaxation part has started, I’m in this totally awkward whackjobber position that I just end up going with:

In the red circle it says, "My shoulder is above my ear."

I figure I’m going to miss the whole thing if I keep trying to get comfortable. The visualization part is great. I always thought the womb was this pitch-dark scene! Apparently not! Depending on how bright the room/the day is, there’s quite a rosy glow going on in there! Finn can see the shadow of our hands on my belly and whatnot! This detail makes me unaccountably delighted.

I’ll tell you about the second class later. The second class rocked it, and was also terrifying!


laura said...

I've had a hard time in my baby class with people, I think I'm the youngest one there now the obvious youngest "graduate" this week. Everyone else seems to be best friends already. Maybe I'm not making eye contact or something, I'm just so shy!

I had no idea that the baby could see our hand's shadow, thank you so much for posting that. I love it!

DL said...

I've always noticed that when i got to a new class ! Even with yoga, where you'd expect everyone to be zen , there is always a lady ( it's often women i must admit..) who looks at you like you're going to be able to do the hand stand and she won't and you'll make her feel like crap. But I am always smiling and it's hard not to take it personally. But people are just like that aren't they ?
and by the way... i am the one who is really scared of the hand stand even after years and years of yoga. but i don't care that the others can do it well !

It's so cool to hear all this baby news and info.
When it;s my turn in a few years, I'll be all prepared thanks to the tina blog !


Eve said...

Geez! It was like Clown Class, full of really unpleasant and judgemental clowns. What was WRONG with those people! I would LOVE to be in your class- we could whine and giggle together!
I really loved our prenatal class last time, and our teacher too. It was a fun weekly date for us. Good times. :)
Can't wait to hear more!

larraine said...


Get her name - I'm on my way!!!!

Anonymous said...

I had a crap group in my Childbirth Class too. I had a complicated pregnancy and everyone was treating me like I had some communicable disease. Only one guy (that's right, one half of one couple) would speak to us. I didn't go to my last class because I couldn't deal with a roomful of grinning pregnant ladies assuring themselves that pregnancy was FANTASTIC and that everything about pregnancy was FANTASTIC and nothing about pregnancy was anything but FANTASTIC.
Ugh. I wanted to throw things at them.

kww said...

We went to our first birth class last Monday, number two is tonight. We started right in on the videos. Saw four births. One right up close and personal that had me cringing. I know I did it before, but it is still really overwhelming and that bulge, that INSANE bulge--eesh, it gives me shivers right now.

There are four couples in our birth class. One is taking a different birth class on Sunday nights and was telling the instructor (and the rest of us) how toned her Kegel muscles were--but perhaps that wasn't as odd as our instructor's unusual explanation of that she told us that when doing the Kegel exercise, we should try to imagine picking up a penny and pulling it way up and then lowering it back out slowly. I couldn't figure out how you would pick it up...right this instant (after a week of strange contemplation) it occurs to me that perhaps the penny must start standing on its edge.

Can't wait to hear about the second class...

la Ketch said...

that woman is a stupid cunt wad. i want to smack her silly. obviously, she has serious issues if she is taking you saying you are having a home birth personally. i mean jesus. of course it's not for everybody. what a stupid thing to say. and of course you didn't mean that when you SAID it because anyone who has ever spent 2 seconds with you knows that you haven't a condescending of presumptive bone in your body, let alone your tone of voice. she's projecting all sorts of shit on you. probably because you are further along and have a large belly. there is a larger surface to project onto. well, she sucks and i hate to say this but i feel sorry for her poor baby. it would be nice if you found fun, cool people in the class to share with but the most important thing is you and dave and finn. so just focus on the teacher and do your own thing. having a baby is such a personal thing and then everybody has all of these really strong opinions about it. i think that's why there are all of these egos flashing around and feelings getting so hurt surrounding it. it's a crazy thing. i can't wait to hear about the next class. and the ICE!! oh my gosh. please wave a finn for me.

xo xo

ketchummccabe said...

Welcome to parenthood, unfortunately this gets carried right on into breastfeed or not, immunize or not, co-sleep or not, pacifier or not, etc. etc. etc. etc.
We try to gather all the important information and make a decision. You must be a stupid and bad parent if you did not come up with the same conclusion as I did.
And the worst of it is that we women do it to each other! But that is a "whole nuther" class to take. My advice......follow your instincts, they are good!!!! and each child and set of parents are different, so what works for one child doesnt work for another. Gather your information, and listen to your instincts, not everyone elses! Even though we insist on giving you advice.

bladio said...

omg i'm reading this during a conf call and i snorted into the phone...the penny on its side, oh my.

tina, obviously the woman is jealous of you because you are cool and awesome, and also jealous of your groovy husband.

Reb and Heidi said...

Yes, what La Ketch said.

Also, who knew about that rosy glow?!? What the heck? That sounds dreamy.

Tina Rowley said...

Ah, man, thanks for the support, everybody!

Things picked up dramatically at the next class, socially-wise. I'll go write about it now! But dang, you guys are great.