|Posted on September 4, 2012 at 11:34 AM||comments (0)|
|Posted on September 4, 2012 at 11:34 AM||comments (0)|
We have had parents take a Bradley Method® class series with baby number two (or three) when they had never taken a series with previous children. The question is: is there value to taking a class series when you are pregnant with other children, when you
have already taken classes with another pregnancy?
I think that depends on the individual couple. We made the choice to take a second complete class series because we only took 9 of the 12 classes in our first series. Bruss also traveled; while I attended 9 of those classes, he only came to five or six of those.
We also ended up taking classes with a different teacher. We were apprehensive at first – who likes change? It turned out to be a great thing. Our new teacher offered a different perspective on the same material, and we got to make new friends as well.
Here are the benefits we saw of taking a second series:
It was time to honor our new baby. It’s easy to get caught up in all the “stuff” with your first-born. For most of us pregnant with number two, baby one is already active and engaged in the world. They require your time and your energy for the better part of your day. Taking the time to prepare for our second child’s birth was time we spent enjoying the pregnancy without our older child. It was just baby and us again during class time.
It was our weekly “date night”. That adorable toddler? As sweet as she was, our conversations revolved around answering all her inquisitive questions. Not a bad thing at all! However, our drive time going to class was spent connecting with each other as a couple. Sometimes we were even able to sneak in a little snack stop before class if we got it together and dropped her off at our sitter’s house early enough.
It was the beginning of sibling preparation. In retrospect, it prepared our daughter to spend time away from mom and dad and still feel valued. My aunt took care of her while we were at class. This same aunt is the one we planned to come stay with her until my mom flew in from Chicago. This time with other adults allowed Ysabella to do something fun without us – she knew it was possible. She learned to do things without mommy. Later, after baby arrived, she continued to enjoy doing special things without me, like going out to get breakfast with Daddy while Mommy and baby slept. She loved this time without me, and she made a decent transition to being an only child to being the big sister.
The material was new again. First time parents have no idea what to expect from labor and birth. A mom has no clue what contractions feel like. A coach has no idea how (s)he will react when they see their partner in labor, and there is nothing they can do to fix it – all they can do is support. The couple does not know how long their labor will be. They do not know what their normal gestation is: is MomBaby an early bird, on time, or a late bloomer? So many unknowns!
Going back to class, the material made sense in a different way. We knew without a doubt that we had to be serious about doing the exercise assignments so that I would have energy at the end of a long birth (back then, Ysabella’s 26 hour labor was “long” to us – haha!) I wanted to go for the accountability of tracking nutrition and doing the homework assignments. It was also interesting to learn from the questions our new classmates asked – in that sense, it made it a completely different class.
For Bruss, he was hearing it for the first time, and classes 10-12 were new for us, too. I also found we paid more attention to the different positions to use in labor and during the pushing phase. Whether it was new material or a different presentation of the material, it really stuck this time and we made good use of the information in our second labor.
We knew what we wanted to change. We could look back on our first labor and learn the lessons. We knew what worked for us, and we knew what we wanted to do differently. Knowing what we wanted to improve on helped us pay attention in class, even though the syllabus, the workbook and the movies were the same. The desire to have a different birth, one without the use of Pitocin, helped us focus on the things we wanted to do better. The classes were a positive step in having the Pitocin-free birth that we were preparing for and wanted to achieve.
I am looking forward to teaching our first The Bradley™ “Next” series to our alumni students that are pregnant with their second babies. We also have a couple joining us who took classes from another teacher and is new to our area. Since we have the unique opportunity to form a class just for second-time parents, we are also going to spend some class time on sibling preparation. It will be fun for these families to prepare for their next child together, and for all the big brothers and sisters to have other peers with new babies in the house.
It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult her or his healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation. Krystyna and Bruss Bowman and Bowman House, LLC accept no liability for the content of this site, or for the consequences of any actions taken on the basis of the information provided. This blog contains information about our classes available in Chandler, AZ and Payson, AZ and is not the official website of The Bradley Method®. The views contained on this blog do not necessarily reflect those of The Bradley Method® or the American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth®.