Sunday, September 7, 2008

Lamaze, Part 1

Hi, ya'll!

We started Lamaze today...the first of two six-hour sessions. It was, uh, well, interesting. Not bad, mind you, although I was in tears at one point. But not fabulous. Turns out that I don't like doing anything for six hours straight, so I got bored a bunch. And it also turns out that FD and I are more yuppie than hippie and so the touchie-feelie New Age aura that was going on was a bit...uh...out of our league.

The Good
  • The book that goes along with the class is super informative and answered a bunch of the questions we had. Great stuff - good resource.
  • The teacher as well as our classmates were exceedingly nice.
The Funny
  • In the elevator going down to class, another mama-to-be openly looked at my tummy and then commented to her husband "Oh, thank God. We're not the only ones who waited until the last minute to take Lamaze." When we got into class, one of the pieces of information we all shared about ourselves was due dates. The chick who commented on my size is due in two "actual" due date is not for six! I take her comment to mean that I am now officially large enough to have attained my own gravitational pull.
  • We had a simulated contractions exercise where the teacher clipped a clothespin on a tender part of our ears and had us practice relaxation techniques. I chanted the Air Force song in my head instead of focusing on the music, which is an old technique from when I was in ROTC in college and had to take PFTs after blowing out one of my legs and so needed to redirect pain somehow. Apparently, I need to work harder at not moving my lips, though. Ha, ha!
The Bad
  • I went to class feeling pretty good about the birthing process. I came out of class a bit freaked out, mostly by thinking about the side affects to Bunny and I from all of the drugs that I was (previously?) interested in getting at the hospital, as well as a bit (!!) upset about the thought of not being able to eat a thing once we're checked in and until baby emerges. And with induction looking like the plan, that could be a very long time. Without food. I become hell on wheels if I'm deprived of food. Is it unethical to sneak snacks behind the nurse's back?
The Ugly
  • I don't cry easily. I just don't. I think my most masculine trait is that I hate for anyone else to ever see me "weak." But I was in tears during class at one point. Here's why:
  • The teacher had us practice hip lunges of differing varieties to show us how to open the birth canal in order to prepare to deliver. I can't do them. Period. I have an uncorrected curve in my spine and it has lead to well over a decade of hip issues, including near constant pain that I entirely manage through sucking it up instead of meds. Every other lady in class could do it. I was, arguably, one of the more fit ladies in terms of being toned, but I couldn't handle a simple exercise. I also couldn't handle sitting cross-legged on the floor, stretching forward...and every other lady could. My hip issues cause my knees to have issues because of stress, and so sitting like that was just hell. The teacher came to help us out and tried to manipulate my hips for me...and couldn't. She's a trained massage therapist (in addition to an L&D nurse and a bunch of other credentials) and so tried some sort of massage technique to loosen up my hips. It failed. Completely. And she commented on that. And it made me feel bad. And so I almost cried.
Please tell me that I'm not the only one out there with apparently really awful hips who wants to have a natural birth. I absolutely, positively do not want a C-section. I just don't. But if I can't even do simple hip manipulations, am I screwed? From the nurse's comment, I kind of feel like I am. I haven't discussed this with my doctors, yet. My hips never came up as a factor at appointments and the problems they cause me have existed for so long that I usually don't even give them thought so I never even would have brought it up before. I've heard of women having C-sections because their hips were too narrow...what about when they're a decent width but just have no elasticity and are cockeyed because of a spinal curve? Any encouragement you could offer would be appreciated...I am very upset over this.

So that was our first session in a nutshell. Next weekend, we'll do the LDR tour, write out a birth plan, and do some other stuff that I've already forgotten.

What was ya'lls experience with classes?




jen said...

First of all, don't freak out about the no food thing. Trust me, just don't. Once things are rolling, nausea is a common side effect of labor. I had it with all 3 of my kids. It'll be ok.

Second, lamaze teachers don't know everything. No one knows how each individual will react during labor. My sister swears by the drugs...she's had 3 normal kids. I didn't use them because they had the nasty effect of STOPPING my contractions. completely. Not good when your water has already broken.

Basically, don't fret. Labor is a short time and look at the goal. Your sweet little baby in your arms. You could put up with anything for a few hours for that goal, right? You will be just fine.

Future Mommy said...

Bless you for that response. I know, intellectually, that all will be well, but I was just feeling so dang inadequate after today and I HATE that feeling.

Nicole said...

I never went to birthing classes during my first pregnancy (they were scheduled to start the day that Hannah was born, actually!), so I cant tell you about my experience. But you kind of have to take those things with agrain of salt. Every woman and every birth experience is different. They can give you all kinds of scenarios or practice exercises, but you will have no idea what its really like until youre in that situation yourself. So try not to worry about the food policy (standard procedure at hospitals, though I hate it too!), or anythign else, because when youre in the middle of labor - everything will be different, and things like that just might not matter to you.

I know some of the possible medication side-effects can be daunting, but theyre required to say all that stuff, legally. Usually everything goes smoothly. With Hannah, I had a little bit of pain meds or sleep meds in my iv, but I basically got through it without drugs. I plan to do that agin this time. Good luck to you! :)

I would bring up your hip pain during your next appt, just to talk things over with your dr. Maybe they can tell you whether or not it will cause a problem. But I dont think that failing to do some hip exercises will exclude you from having a vaginal delivery!

Sorry if I forgot anything. But Im glad youre learning new things, thats what these classes are for! The hospital tour should be fun.
Ive heard that having a birth plan, even if itsj ust in your head, is a good idea, but just know that they arent always followed. You never know what might happen or how youll feel during labor & delivery, so its nice to also be flexible.


Babette said...

I'm glad that I didn't get to eat any food or else it would've been an extra messy birth! I don't know why but while I was pushing, there were a couple of times that I felt like throwing up. Good thing my stomach was empty and all that came out was a little water (from the ice chips).
I was induced for both my kids because of my medical condition. Not to scare you (I'm sure you've heard it all) but it HURTS! I think it's because the contractions are not natural that's why it hurts more. I had an epidural both times. My pain threshold is usually high (according to my dentist) but my labor pains are too much for me. It's all up to you, if you think you can take the pain then more power to you. Just remember that there is a cut-off time on when you can get the epidural.