How does one prepare for childbirth?
Honestly, I fail to understand. I haven't signed up for birth prep classes, but I've read books and articles, talked to more experienced women and to new and expectant moms. I'm doing exercises which are supposed to assist me in the "moment of truth". And I'm still not an inch closer to understanding what is going to happen when it's actually time to have the baby.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not panicky - I just feel a bit... silly when I read, "breathe in such and such a way, as if you are having contractions" - while I'm not actually having contractions. Or, "practice position X - it will be very useful in such and such stage of labor"; OK, I've been practicing position X for the past two months. It might be a nice part of my exercise routine, but I doubt it makes me any more prepared. Or does it?
Do I feel more informed? Yes, absolutely. But the more I read, the more convinced I become that when it's time to give birth, I should simply allow my body to take control and do whatever feels most comfortable at the moment. For example, I might not feel like "doing" position X after all. It might be good for another woman, but not for me.
I also stopped feeling anxious about not reading each and every bit of information I can find. There's more than I can digest anyway - with the endless flow of useful knowledge from books, magazines, websites, blogs, and dear, well-meaning people, I actually feel I must protect myself from the thought that if I don't do this and that, I will fail to bring the baby into this world. Babies have a tendency to come out, not stay in, and most deliveries today are very safe, praise God. So while I like to educate myself, I know the world won't end if I miss out on a few undoubtedly useful how-to articles. The baby, with God's help, sincere prayer and good attitude, will be out safe and healthy in her due time.
Speaking of due time, I'm not fussed about that one either. Mom called me from work today to... ask the date of my last period. Turns out, she and her co-workers were sitting there, trying to calculate my exact due date through a new method. But we all know that a "due date" is only an approximation. No doctor can really know the exact moment when my baby is ready to enter this world. It just happens when it happens.
My plan for the next few weeks is very simple. I will need wholesome nutrition, routine exercise, enough sleep, and plenty of quiet time alone and with my husband. We might go out now and then just for the fun of doing things as a couple, and we plan to make basic preparations for the baby's arrival. If I'm not sure whether we really need this or that item, we can probably wait until the baby is here to find out. There are also a few household projects and crafts I'm tackling at my leisure.
And now, we're off to a relaxing weekend - wishing the same to all you ladies!