Everyone recommends that new parents take a birthing class. Originally we were going to do a 6 week class, but our schedules got crazy, and instead we decided to pack it all into 1 weekend. 8 hours on Saturday, 4 hours on Sunday. This happened this past weekend. There was not a TON of new information, but plenty of opportunity to ask questions like "do I wear glasses or contacts during labor?", "when EXACTLY do I go to the hospital?" and "how do I introduce my dog to my baby"?. There were funny things about this class as well. For one, our instructor had a significant high-pitched wheeze. Every three sentences or so she would take a sharp breath in and you could hear a loud whistling. This happened about every three sentences for 8 hours on Saturday and 4 hours on Sunday. Another helpful thing was discussing and practicing pain management. Breathing, positioning yourself differently, distracting yourself from the pain with back massages (this was nice), etc. To practice this breathing and relaxation, we did some visualization meditation. However, I don't know about you, but visualizing my own labor and giving birth is not very relaxing, nor is being propped up on pillows that caused an incredible burning pain around my lower back and my tailbone and poor SHM, who had to support me by leaning back on his hands for 25 minutes. Nor was the snoring woman next to us (although clearly she was plenty relaxed). Or the insufferable church laughter that we both inevitably had and it was SO bad!
Despite all of this, the class was great at easing fears and talking through a lot of scary but inevitable aspects of giving birth. The best part about it all was that SHM was able to sit through the whole thing without feeling faint or squeamish, and this included a play by play of a c-section which I had to turn away from. So at least we know he'll make it:) YAY!