Pregnancy Update: 28 Weeks / Childbirth Classes

As I enter the third trimester, I have a lot more bump pics for you guys.

I’ve been a very busy bee. We attended a friend’s wedding…

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I went to the Texas State Fair

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And I ate a lot of fried desserts.

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My sister bought me my very first actual maternity clothes.

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And the household animals are wising up to the fact that there’s a little someone in my belly.

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Right now the baby is about the size of a head of cauliflower (and weighs about 2.5 lbs) and we’re just starting the third trimester. If the baby was born today, they’d have about a 90% survival rate – how crazy is that?! No rush little baby – I need these last three months. Your nursery is still empty! But your first baby shower is coming up soon.

So far I’ve done one childbirth class – a basic, cover-all class called “Introduction to Childbirth” that talked broadly about natural birth, medicated birth, and c-sections. It also talked about the early days of parenthood, including infant CPR, how to swaddle, and how to put on a diaper. I’ve changed a fair number of diapers so far as a babysitter, but getting actual instruction with tips and tricks was kind of mind-blowing. Winging it, I made things much harder for myself – which is pretty typical of me in life in general. But what’s this? There’s an actual way to tell which way is front? And there’s a magic line that changes color when the diaper’s wet?! ARE YOU KIDDING? Diapers: apparently much more advanced technology than I thought.

Lately I’ve been having a lot of trouble learning about labor. I’ve had three panic attacks – for lack of a better word. Once while watching a labor video, once while reading about labor, and once during the labor class. There’s no aspect of labor that scares me particularly – pain’s not really new to me, I don’t love needles but I can deal, and it’s not like this would be my first hospital stay. But there’s some aspect of it that really scares me. I think it’s the “miracle” part. The idea that childbirth isn’t like normal pain and that something magical and amazing is supposed to happen. Like, I’m going to be thrilled as all get out to meet this baby, but I feel like there’s some other expectation – like some kind of Sailor Moon-esque transformation that’s supposed to happen, or a Dragon Ball Z Super Sayayin moment that I’m supposed to have.

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And it seems mystical and unattainable. And it also feels like if I don’t transform and I don’t feel the magic, then I’ve failed. And I’m not a real mom or a good mom or something.

The good news is that I have moved past these panic attacks – but how and why is it’s own post for later. Just know that if you’re pregnant and worried about the labor-magic, you’re not the only one.

Anywho. I’ve also gone and toured the hospital, that was really nice because now I can picture the place I’ll give birth really easily, and that makes mental preparation so much easier. I’m big on visualization. I like knowing just where I’ll park, just what the room will be like, and just where my family will be waiting for me. I’m also lucky that I have one of the best hospitals to give birth in – Medical City Dallas. They not only have the highest level NICU in case (God forbid) something goes wrong, but they’re also pretty forward-thinking in terms of mother-infant bonding and health. They promote as much skin-to-skin time as possible and they make sure that the baby’s in your room with you at all times unless something goes very wrong. They won’t take your baby overnight – they believe strongly that you need to room in with your baby and learn their cues and behaviors so that you don’t get home with no idea what to do. You get your own nurse and at most the nurse will have one other patient, so you have someone who is available to you all the time to help with every little question and concern.

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They also do this cute little dinner thing on your last night before you go home – they serve you a meal at a candle lit table for two with sparkling cider and fancy dishes as a “celebration meal.” I think that’s just the cutest thing in the world.

I’m really pleased with the hospital and as nervous as I am about this whole miracle of life thing, I do feel that I at least got the location and birth team right.

Now all I’ve got to do is not give birth in a car on the side of the road and we’ll be good!

(btw this is the video that gave me a random panic attack. I can watch it fine now. Although if I think to hard about roadside birth being a real thing that might actually happen I feel a little woozy….let’s just move on.)

Husband took another class on his own called Daddy 411 which is for boys only. I thought it sounded great but apparently it was dumb. I don’t think husband is as in to this stuff as I am.

Next on the agenda is the breast feeding class, then I’m thinking I’ll take the c-section class just in case. If I was having an emergency c-section, there wouldn’t be time to explain everything to me, so better to learn it and never need it than be put in a situation where I wish I knew more.

I also really want to take a Lamaze class, but the hospital just lost their Lamaze teacher, so I need to find somewhere else that offers a class. Not really sure where to look yet – community centers? Churches?

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I’ve also read about another thing called the Bradley method which sounded really interesting. I’d also like to find a general class for meditation/relaxation techniques. I’m on the fence about medicated vs. all natural, but even if I go for a medicated birth I think relaxation techniques could come in handy when I start hyperventilating while reading childbirth books and things like that. Not to mention for the first time my future angel baby breaks one of my super rare collectible figurines or dumps juice on my laptop. I need all the zen I can get.

Well, that’s enough random thoughts for now. If you know of any other classes I should look for, or good places to look for classes, tell me about it in the comments!

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