Another task on the pregnancy to do list completed; we’ve officially finished the NCT ante natal classes. 18 hours and £120 later I started to ask myself was it really worth it? I missed 3 rugby matches on TV including England beating France in the six nations and consumed my own body weight in biscuits which really can’t be good for the six pack. Some pretty big sacrifices, but did we actually learn things we couldn’t read in a book and were there other benefits? Well to help here is my top 5 things I learned over the 18 hours, in no particular order…..
- Put 8 pregnant women around a table full of biscuits and cake and they will eat the equivalent of another baby.
- Getting in the way of a pregnant woman heading for the toilet after being shut in a room for 2 hours is like facing a charging elephant.
- Learning people’s names is easy, learning which woman is with which man is much much harder and can lead to some very embarrassing conversations
- When asked what you think of when you hear the word Labour you shouldn’t say Tony Blair in response
- Every conversation with other expectant parents turns into a game of Top Trumps – we spent £500 on our push chair, we haven’t even packed our hospital bag yet, we’re going to breast feed and use re-useable nappies etc etc
I consider myself relatively well educated in all things baby having had friends and family with babies who I’ve helped with. The lady of the manor is a children’s nurse and looks after mainly sick babies so can change a nappy in her sleep. So a whole lot of what we covered wasn’t really that useful if I’m being honest. However the labour process clearly isn’t something we have any experience of and I think for me to better understand this and how I can help is really valuable. It turns out my job is to tell the mid wife to bugger off whenever she comes around with her epidural’s or tells us she has a bad back so can’t deliver a baby with the lady of the manor standing.
So some good stuff, was it worth 18 hours in a village hall while the sun was shining? I’m not so sure. But we now have 7 other couples who all live locally and are in exactly the same position as us as first time parents. The ladies are now all meeting weekly for coffee, cake (notice a pattern?) and gossiping. We now are also Monday night pub quiz regulars with a couple who live just down the road from us. Clearly we aren’t going to be life long friends with all 7 couples, but £120 to gain 3 or 4 couples who we will stay in touch with? That’s pretty good value in my view.
So now we play the waiting game, less than 2 weeks to the due date and we are now officially in what I like to call ‘the red zone’. It really could come any day now, I like to tell the lady of the manor that regularly, she likes it, it’s exciting. The car seat is permanently in the car along with the hospital bag. The nursery is even going to have a carpet soon. One day soon we’ll have an answer to all our questions; boy or girl? Like mum or dad? What weight? Good or bad sleeper? Will the dog like him/her?
I. Can’t. Wait.