As I approached the presumed last 12 weeks of my pregnancy, the Roswell OBGYN doctors and nurses encouraged me to look at the classes offered at Northside Hospital and to sign up for a couple that peaked my interest. Unlike many new moms, I’ve had a lot of experience with infants; thus, I wanted to choose a class that would teach me something new. After spending an embarrassing amount of time reading all the class descriptions, I decided to start with Baby Essentials. A couple weeks ago I was over at my friend Jenn's house - I should mention Jenn has four kids, three of whom are under age two. While sitting on the floor in her little one's nursery, Jenn attempted to teach me how to swaddle. After watching intently and practicing a couple times I had some serious concern about remembering how to perform blanket origami on my own. The Baby Essentials class description clearly stated that swaddling was one of the key components of the class, I was sold.
The week of the class, my husband was out of town for a work function (I promise he doesn't really travel all the time), so I decided to take the class on my own. I assumed the class would be mostly mamas-to-be; I was wrong and pleasantly surprised to find many daddys accompanying their pregnant wives. Each participant’s station was set up for a couple and included two dolls and booklets of information. As the class got underway, everyone introduced themselves, sharing their baby’s due date; everyone was between 20 and 35 weeks. Since Patrick wasn’t in town, I took copious notes and photos to share with him later. Admittedly, I also shared with the class that my husband was out of town; despite the ring on my finger, I didn't want others to assume I was tackling parenthood alone.
April, the class leader, taught me so many things about hospital expectations, working with lactation consultants, how to fold a diaper around a healing belly button, what to expect in your baby’s first diapers...and more! When we saw Channing’s first poo, I said, “Its meconium!” We covered nail trimming, car seat installation and safety check, household baby-proofing, which Patrick and I will tackle between now and Channing’s discharge, and so much more. Did you know your supposed to have an official car seat safety check with a certified technician? We didn't. Channing’s birth may have been different than expected, but the things I learned during the three-hour class still apply. Patrick and I had planned to attend Northside’s Mommy and Daddy Boot Camps before we became parents; however, Channing unexpectedly arrived eight weeks and five days early and I only had one class scheduled before Channing's arrival. Sometimes its easy for me to procrastinate; especially, when I feel like I have tons of time to do something or that it isn't really necessary. I can't tell you how many times I've made up excuses not to take an additional yoga training; in fact, I contemplated attending the Laughing Lotus Restorative Yoga Intensive the same weekend I delivered. Praise goodness I wasn't on a plane or in NYC when Channing arrived! Having an idea of what’s going to happen in the hospital and in the first few days of your baby’s life, makes all the difference. Even if you think its unimportant, educated yourself.
Interested in learning more about Northside Hospital’s classes? Check out all the classes, and descriptions of them, here.
Every day is a new experience for us as parents, and we will continue to document our #NorthsideBaby experience, as we watch Channing grow and get stronger, and prepare for her homecoming.
P.S. I learned how to swaddle!
Channing sleeps snuggled up in a Z-flo in an incubator at the Northside Hospital NICU, so I haven’t needed to test my swaddle skills much yet, but when she comes home I will be ready! I even bought a doll for my husband to practice on, so he’s all set too. If you’re expecting a little one of your own or have a hard time mastering swaddling, hopefully, this step by step guide will help you.
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored blog post and I was compensated by Northside Hospital. All thoughts and opinions are my own.