We checked some major things off of our to-do list this week. We went to visit the birth center and started our six-week baby class.
The birth center visit made me a little nervous. It is part of a hospital, but caters more toward natural births and the presence of midwives. OB/GYNs and C-sections are thought of as last resorts instead of the default. Everything is very much geared toward mother and baby, all of which I really love. (This is also the only place my midwives deliver.) The part that made me a little nervous was how much it still looked like a hospital with a rocking chair stuck in the delivery room. I was hoping everything would be a little less clinical. I don’t have an irrational fear of hospitals, I’m just very much in the mindset that having a baby is not a medical affair. And maybe I have a slight “white coat” syndrome that makes me clamp up around doctors. Marco felt the opposite and was very pleased how it didn’t feel super hospital-like to him. I just know I want to spend as little time there as possible. I would love to go as late in my labor as I can and possibly leave a day early. Of course this is all contingent on everything going normally and everyone getting though healthy and safe. If it were up to me alone, I think I would have been pretty interested in giving birth at home.
The group baby/birth prep classes certainly made us less nervous. So far we’ve only been to one (out of six), but it was extremely comforting. We arrived with no questions and realized there is tons we didn’t know, had those new questions answered, and left feeling confident and informed. Even though the ladies leading the class had an open mind about all types of births and birth plans, they very much stressed that having confidence in your body is most important. We also learned that the majority of the information you can gather while in labor (contraction timing, dilation, effacement) means very little if you are doing things naturally. The baby will come when it is time and your body will tell you when to push. That really made me relax to know if things are going smoothly, I don’t need anyone poking around telling me about numbers that mean nothing and stressing me out to move things along.
So if you haven’t guessed, I’m planning on doing this thing all myself. No drugs, no probing, everything as natural as possible. I’m pretty confident about this knowing my mom did it with both of her kids. She also gave me some invaluable advice. She said, “Every contraction has an end. Regardless of how much pain you are in, it only lasts a day. When the baby is born, it’s over. It can’t last forever.” I think to myself now, for the sake of this little person we’re making, I’m deciding that being in pain for one day is no big deal and I’m ready for it.