Category Archives: birth class

forever seeking closure

Okay, that wasn’t supposed to happen at all. Nearly a week has gone by, and I haven’t blogged once. Not so much as a photo post or a meme. And during the month I vowed to blog every day–and then every other day. That’s just pathetic!

After I spent last week fighting a  little cold, it seems that Baby Genius has caught it as well. He started feeling sick on our way home from our visit last weekend. As a result, we had to miss our long-anticipated birth class reunion. I’m still sad about this. I have been communicating with one woman from the class since our babies were born, and this was going to be our chance to meet her son. It was also going to be our opportunity to thank our instructor, not only for the class but for her assistance during labor (she was one of our nurses). And of course, it was our opportunity to see all of the other babies who were making their mamas so uncomfortable last we saw them. Alas, there will be no cute reunion photo, no sharing of birth stories, no comparing of sleep patterns.

For some reason, I have clung to the idea of this reunion for a long time. I thought it would sort of serve as a final bit of closure to the pregnancy. It’s strange that I want that, even when I’ve got a seven-month-old BG clinging to me, trying to sprout his first tooth, but I guess I do and I’m sad not to get it. I don’t miss pregnancy nearly as much as I did after he was first born, but I still find myself missing it a bit. Being around my sister-in-law this weekend gave me a few nostalgic pangs for the kicks I used to feel and for the firm roundness that was my belly. There’s something so very magical about it all. It’s no secret that I loved it.

It’s funny how long the signs of pregnancy, the after-effects, stick around. I don’t think I felt fully healed until six months out. I still have the occasional pubic bone pain, but even that is mostly gone, and I’m starting to get some muscle tone back. My body has slowly been making its way back to normal. I’m even losing my hair. Oh, am I losing my hair. It’s hard to believe how much hair the body hangs onto while pregnant. The hair loss I could do without.

Most of these final stages, I have seen pass with a little wistfulness (one exception being the return of my period at just over two months postpartum–a scarce two weeks after I stopped bleeding; my reaction was less wistful and more  full-blown tantrum). But maybe I’m getting my final closure by way of the return of my body. It’s not quite in its original state. I’m about thirty-five pounds lighter than I was before I got pregnant, a little more stretched out, a lot more fatigued, but I’m just one person again, and there’s something pretty great–even magical–about that too.

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Filed under Baby Genius, birth class, post partum, Pregnancy

Daddy Night? (with updates)

Last night, as our birth class was wrapping up, the instructor announced, “Okay! That’s it for tonight. Next week will be all about Daddy! We’re going to have Daddy Night!”

There have been these “Daddy” handouts each week that J doesn’t get, and I have wondered what we’re missing. Now there’s going to be a whole night, and I have no clue what this means. Is J going to have to pretend to be “Daddy,” or is she going to have to pretend to not be our baby’s second parent? Actually, what is more likely is that she won’t attend because she is, quite understandably, quite bothered by this. We’re both more than a little disturbed that even though we’re one of just four couples in the class, we’re somehow not even considered in the class plans. 

Sometime today I’ll call the childbirth educator and find out how this class pertains to us and our birth, where there will be no daddies present. I’m not looking forward to this.

Update #1

I placed a call to the instructor and left a message letting her know I had some questions about next week’s class. I then fell asleep and missed her return call. Her message, however, did reveal that she knew (or thought she knew) why I was calling. She had planned to call us to fill us in on what happens on Daddy Night. Apparently, the men always feel so left out (gag) that she has a night for them where she shows videos on what it’s like to be a new dad. Then, they go into a separate room and they talk about their fears, concerns, worries about becoming new dads. The “moms” stay in the room with the instructor and practice breastfeeding positioning with dolls. She let us know that we were welcome to come to watch the daddy videos but that we could certainly show up late for the last hour of class when we’ll discuss more about labor.

It seems to me she hasn’t quite understood why I called. That, or she just doesn’t give a shit that there is going to be one person there who feels left out all around. My wife is not planning to nurse, so she’s not going to practice breastfeeding positions, and certainly the guys aren’t going to want her to have their male bonding session with her present, so where does she go?

So, I left the instructor another message, and informed her that while I appreciated her filling me in on the content of next week’s course, I still have some concerns. We’ll see what happens when she returns this call. I’ll be sure to post another update. For now, I’m still positively fuming.

Update #2

I finally spoke with the instructor, and I voiced my concerns about my wife being left out, and she felt terrible. I told her that I wished we had known that there was going to be this sort of focus at all during this class. She did defend her choice to help the dads learn about becoming nurturing fathers, but she also wanted me to know that she does consider us in her language choices and in how she presents the class materials. It seems that she just doesn’t know how to fit us in to this one class and still help the guys. As frustrating as this is, I had to acknowledge that she has done well with her language use, which, as we all know, is important. J and I agreed that if she’s working hard to combat old-fashioned ideas, language, and thinking habits about parenting, there is something to be said for that.

And so, her solution was this: she’s holding a private session for us next week to go over the information from Tuesday night’s class. This way, we don’t have to go and be uncomfortable, and we still get the information that is applicable to us. We both agreed that this will be fine, although it doesn’t resolve the issue of feeling singled out. Alas, this is where we suck it up and deal–and we chalk this up as a lesson in researching our choices more.

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Filed under birth class