I’ve wanted to go to NCT antenatal classes since I was 9 years old. I know that probably sounds very strange, what 9 year old knows about NCT classes? My best friend’s mum ran them and I used to love it if I was there to see all the pregnant ladies arrive. I remember one time being there for the ‘meet the babies’ one and we were allowed to say hello! Ever since then I’ve known that doing NCT classes is part of what I want when I have a baby.
As previously mentioned I’ve wanted to be a mummy my whole life and it’s been quite a journey to get here. There are many things along the way that have felt like momentous moments, aspects of pregnancy that I have always fantasised about. Dungarees was a big one! I am the proud owner of both denim and the comfy jersey dungarees, sadly I am not having a nursery so don’t get to wear them while decorating! Buying certain items, the scans, going on maternity leave – all of these have been big “wow it’s my turn” moments but I think yesterday was one of the biggest rites of passage and it came filled with a mixture of emotions.
I’ve mostly been excited about every aspect of this pregnancy, with little dashings of terror but nothing more than the norm really, and the same applied to going to antenatal classes. I booked my space on the NCT course back in July when I was about 9 weeks pregnant, I knew it could be tricky to get a place on the courses nearest to you so thought I’d book in early. January felt like forever away at the time and yes, it has come around fast in some aspects but it feels like it has been a long time coming too.
My biggest concern about starting the course was being the odd one out without a husband or partner. I’ve always fought against conforming and I LOVE being the different one, the quirky one, the one who is just outside the box but it is still a scary prospect when faced with a room of “normal” people to be the one who is doing this an alternative way. I knew I wouldn’t be on my own, my amazing sister was with me as she is going to be my birthing partner, but there are so many parts of this that I AM doing on my own and that’s fine. I was a little bit disappointed that we didn’t introduce ourselves officially as I really wanted to go straight in with my circumstances. It was made clear to everyone from the beginning we were sisters not partners I think it was probably obvious to the women as we look alike but possibly not to the men!) but one thing I really want people to know is that I have chosen to do it this way, I don’t like the thought of others thinking I’ve been promiscuous or careless, or that I have had my heartbroken and been left. I’m not in a bad situation or a difficult one, in fact, I don’t like it being called a “situation” really. I like people to know I have chosen to do it this way and I like them to know from the start that there is no absent father to be sad or cross about, there is simply no father. I managed to get it into the conversation with a few people I spoke to throughout the day so I’ll have to be content with that for now…there is a little part of me that likes the idea that some of the couples might have been questioning it in car on the way home!
I came away from the day yesterday not really feeling more confident or more terrified. I feel like some aspects were confirmed in my mind. I have been annoyingly calm and smug over the last few months when it comes to the delivery, saying “I’m not worried about giving birth, I’m trusting in my body and the fact this is what it is designed to do!”…but last week I started to have those “Oh man! She has to actually come out!” panics!! We only really talked about a standard, text book vaginal birth yesterday and I am not kidding myself that mine won’t be complicated…I don’t do anything in a simple manner! We will be discussing pain relief and assisted deliveries on Wednesday and I feel that is when I might start to have the sense that this is really happening! We also discussed the options for where to have the baby; the main options here are one hospital or one of two birthing centres. I won’t be allowed to deliver in a birthing centre due to my conditions but I don’t want to anyway. We also discussed the different stages of labour and what the baby and the mum need once home.
One of the things I was worried about before yesterday was my tolerance of stupid people! My bar has always been very low but now I’m pregnant it is pretty much non-existent and I was so worried that people would be asking stupid questions all the time and I would lose my patience. I am happy to report that no one said anything that made me want to roll my eyes, sigh like my dad or punch them in the face! In fact everyone seemed really nice which is such a comfort because you go into that room knowing these people are going to be some of your closest friends over the next year and you are going to share some of the most intimate things with these almost strangers. Some of them could become friends for life! My mum is still close friends with 2 couples from her NCT course from 1980!
I am excited for Wednesday to come around, I am excited to get to know these people more and I am excited to learn more about what drugs I can have when giving birth!