D and I went to our first NCT Ante-Natal class on Wednesday evening. The overall experience was a good and positive one and I think D really did enjoy himself, he certainly cracked a few gags and bonded well with the blokes. I was so excited about going I almost choked myself to death in the car eating an egg mayonaise roll before going in. There are seven couples in total all I would say in their early to mid thirties; I am pretty sure that I am one of the oldest there though no one asked. For some reason I can remember all the names of the blokes but only a couple of the women. We started by introducing ourselves with the men giving their name and the due date and the women their name and where they hope to give birth. Most people are due around Christmas time like me though there's one person due in January and another who may be induced early. We then split into two groups, male and female, and had to write down what we expected to get out of the course. I was quite surprised as it seemed to me that the majority of the other women didn't really seem to have a clue about their options or the kind of birth they wanted. For a moment I thought perhaps I was the only one who had done any reading as everyone else was a bit 'oh well I have tried not to think about all that'. Turns out that most of them were just holding back and the reality is that most of us do have some idea of what we will be comfortable with.
Everyone wants to breastfeed. I wonder if there's anything out there on the statistics RE NCT members breastfeeding. Would be useful to know. We (the women) talked about episiotomies, water births, pain relief and breastfeeding while the blokes talked about 'not killing the baby' and 'when will she be able to drink again'. When we mentioned the choice between being cut or tearing the groupl leader said we would talk about it probably when the men were out of the room 'having coffee' at which point several of us said we would prefer to talk about it with the men there as we felt it was really important that they know what might happen in labour. The Leader's attitude was a bit confusing to be honest. The whole point of the writing things down on a list was that no one person could be identified as having a particular problem but that the group could talk about it all together. I hope that the men aren't excluded as that hardly seems to make sense.
Our next excercise was to split again into gender groups and the men had to write down their idea of a perfect romantic night at home and the women their idea of a perfect birth. It was to show how similar the two are; how women want low lighting, calm and peace during labour. It was quite a useful thing to do really.
So to the people... the couples all seem nice enough. All the couples were lovely. They all live quite far away from me though (on the other side of town) so not sure how this is going to work out as an excercise in making friends. Most seem to be typically middle class and I did laugh inside when two of them started talking about a handbag one had brought with her and how her husband had surprised her with it and then bought the matching purse for her too. There was also a bit of chatter about 'push presents' which is something I have never wanted or expected. I always thought the present you both get after labour is ... erm, a baby?
In contrast the leader of the group was definitely not one of these well put together women, seemed quite a lot more down to earth and stuck out even more than I did. When we left D was able to tell me lots of things about the couples, like only one couple knows what they are having, what all the blokes did for a living and so on. None of us women vollunteered this information so maybe it will take a while for us all to get to know eachother - infact maybe we do need a bit more direction in this so I hope the course leader gets us all to chat a bit more. Or maybe I need to chat a bit more rather than leave it up to D.
The last part of the evening was all about hormones in birth and how they fight eachother. We then did a relaxation excercise which meant the lights being turned off and lots of giggling. It was fun, D enjoyed it and I feel happy that he will learn a lot from the whole thing. next session in Sunday from 10 - 4 (!). I had thought that we might all go out to grab some lunch or something but she's asked us to bring a packed lunch. Ah well. We'll be doing stuff about labour I think.
Just 2 weeks left in work now and I haven't spoken to my boss for at least 3 weeks. It's getting up my nose so yesterday I sent her an email suggesting we meet up wlong with my current work mate and the woman who is taking over. Specially as my boss missed a meeting with me yesterday and failed to even mention that she wouldn't be there. I still haven't heard back from her so I feel incredibly ignored and undervalued. I've been working so hard to get the training for the new person sorted and in the last week my usual workmate will be on holiday so I will have to be doing my job and sorting out the new person - a little bit of input from my boss would be appreciated to be honest.
Pregnancy wise I feel fine, a little less mobile and am finding bending really uncomfortable but generally I am ok. Still getting some sleep and my ankle only swells up occasionally. I was a bit worried at the weekend as the selling pain went all the way up my leg, but keeping it elevated and walking seems to help it. We were invited to go out with BIL and his wife at the weekend and they did badger us a bit by text when we decided not to go but perhaps when SIL is as pregnant as me she will understand that sometimes all you want to do is stay at home.
I tried to do some tidying up last-night and found it quite exhausting; bending down makes my heartburn worse and I had to sit down regularly for a rest! At least I will have a couple of weeks to get things done slowly if I suddenly start nesting. I need to do a list because there is so much to do, including cooking and freezing some meals. I have started hoping that the baby comes a week early so at least that way I will get some time alone with just D and the baby.