We have had 2 more NCT sessions since my last update. They were the final 2 sessions talking about antenatal and labour since next week we move on to post natal.
On Wednesday we discussed pain relief and where to have your baby. It was actually really useful to hear about the pros and cons of each option. I think it's good to be informed so that when you make a decision at the time (and it really is individual to every person and there isn't any right or wrong) you know all the consequences. I doubt otherwise, mid labour when offered an injection of drugs to help with the pain, I would either be in a good place to think about it or the midwife would be in a good place to start discussing options in any great depth.
It has helped us to think about a birth plan which at least is a first start in taking control of the process. We are going to go for as natural a birth as possible, a little bit of hypnosis hopefully (we received our very American looking book and CD in the post - G Kisby is really concerned that at 6am in the morning on the way to work I am going to have it on..."you are a strong and confident woman...take control of your world" etc etc) mixed with gas / air and potentially some water bath action. Obviously that is just a plan. Also think it is important to be open to alternatives and I'm not going to be precious or think myself a failure if it all goes to pot and I end up taking every un-natural option available.
We also talked about where to give birth. NCT are very pro home birth and actually I can absolutely see the benefits. Apparently much quicker labours, statistically just as safe as hospital (if not more, thinking about the lack of germs in your own home, particularly ours) and loads of facts around less women needing stitches etc.
Think it is a step too far for us with our first baby and I'm also not sure that I'd see my front room the same after it has been covered in blood and stuff. But all the same really interesting. And if nothing else it has made me less worried about the baby coming quickly and having to give birth at home (with a midwife obviously - I trust Gaz implicitly but I'm not sure about him in a nursing capacity).
Today was a day session (which was a bit annoying since a weekend is so precious) and we took our lunch along. Again it was good - although think could reduce down the time if we cracked on straight away and sped things up slightly. We covered second and third stage labour (I genuinely didn't know there was a third stage) and the various complications or issues that can arise - including cesarean, forceps etc.
The placenta is roughly the size of a dinner plate you say - what the hell? I was thinking it would fit in your palm. I also learnt that no, you can't just pull the cord and get that bad boy out. It is still very much attached to your body at first and that can cause blood loss.
Aside from NCT I did have another slight moment of panic yesterday. Caused by someone in work who genuinely couldn't believe that we hadn't bought anything yet and were no-where near having the baby room decorated. They said it was "amazing we were so laid back when the baby could come early". Hmmmm, yeah. They asked whether Gaz was as laid back, to which I answered, "are you kidding - Gaz is the main instigator of this approach". Anyway last night we had a cheese, olives and crusty bread tea whilst doing some research into best prams etc. (for the record I didn't eat any of the stilton or goats cheese). It isn't that I feel worried about things being finished as much as feeling sad for Mav that his parents haven't got anything ready for him / her arriving. I want Mav to know that we love him/her and are looking forward to him / her arriving. Our friend Kirsty has offered us some fab second hand things at really good prices and when we looked them up last night they also get great reviews.
So, to end on an absolute positive, we have now bought a car seat, baby carrier thing and pram - woooo! We love you Mav x