What to expect from Antenatal Classes

Everyone’s heard the horror stories about about NCT classes where you are forced to work in groups,  everyone holding hands singing songs. But this isn’t the case.

In my experience, the group work we did involved Dads collectively putting a list of questions together which ranged from very practical questions regarding prams and  the best suspension options for going off road, to how to combat flat head syndrome and what food provisions to bring to the hospital.

In my case the food preparation was essential in allowing me to remain calm when my wife started having contractions. The fact that I made enough sandwiches for a small army didn’t matter:)

Back to the antenatal class, the important part was to learn what to expect when babies are born. Unbeknownst to me before I attended the class, newborns can suffer from a number of conditions at birth. You may have a perfect picture in your mind of what your newborn will look like.

In my case, I had a vision of my son being a miniature version of me, smiling up at me. Prepare to be shocked guys, in most cases babies are be born with blue hands and feet, a yellow tinge, cone head, crossed eyes, swollen face and skin rashes. At a minimum, you can almost guarantee your little one will look like a boxer after a hard fought bout. As shocking as these conditions seem, they are all perfectly normal and usually last for a period of two days on average.

The highlight of our sessions had to be the meconium discussion. This is what you’ll find in your new babies nappy the first few days after birth. The meconium is the ingested material from the infant’s time in the mother’s uterus. Basically it’s a sticky black tar substance. On hearing this description, one of the guys in the group who had been very reserved and sitting quietly with his wife, suddenly perked up. He began searching frantically on his phone for Google images of the meconium and proceeded to shock the group for the next 20 minutes with different photo samples, each more horrifying than the last. Most of Dads dealt with this onslaught by breaking into hysterical laughter, apart from one of the Dads who seemed to be growing greener by the minute. I have to say, all in all it was good healthy banter.

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