Empathy Belly VS Craig

Saturday, June 20, 2009
Our final childbirth class was not as tense as the first. Craig was back from Alaska, so he was able to attend...unfortunately the information that was most beneficial for him was given on the first day. Class started with each couple presenting their homework. We were assigned the topic of natural induction, so we just named a few different options and how they worked. After each couple presented, we were to simulate 2nd stage labor and try a few of the positions that we learned from the previous week. It was difficult, and sometimes frustrating, because Craig wasn't there for any of those positions...so I had to try and direct him and it didn't always work out the way I would have liked..I was grateful for the instructor coming over to help guide him with some of the positions. Overall, Craig did well...considering he wasn't there last week. While working through the positions, the instructor asked for volunteers from the men to wear the "Empathy Belly". Right away, I pointed to Craig and he stood up willingly. Before placing the suit on, the instructor wrapped a small corset type thing around his diaphragm to simulate pressure on the lungs. Inside the belly area is a large sack full of warm water. Underneath the water sack there is a large bean bag to help push on the bladder. The suit, as a whole, weighed about 35 pounds. Craig wore the suit for a couple of hours...and did quite well. During our break, we walked around the hospital and Craig was even comfortable enough to head towards the cafeteria to get a coke. I was so proud of him. The only reason he eventually took it off was because his water broke...actually the bag just sprung a small leak and he was getting pretty wet.

This week the focus was more on the medicated side of delivery...unlike last week, which FREAKED ME OUT!!! We watched a video of a woman using different analgesics and anesthesia, and another video of the administration of an epideral. These women looked much more content throughout the delivery than any of the women in the previous videos from last week. That was a relief!!

Unfortunately, today's class was a bit more dry and felt like an eternity to get through. It was hard to stay awake towards the end...I wanted to take a nap so desperately. At times, Craig rested his eyes for a little too long and did the whole "head bopping". I understood, but at the same time it was a bit disheartening. Well...we got through to the end, and even though I am worried about Craig being my "coach" having only been to one class and having a hard time staying away, at times, during the second class...I KNOW that Craig will pull through and do whatever he needs to do to help me through delivery...that's just the way that Craig is...he rarely disappoints!!

Just under 6 weeks remaining. I am so glad to be out of school so that I can focus my attention on getting the house ready, the nursery ready, and packing my hospital bag. We are so excited to meet Emily!!


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