My prenatal class did not really prepare me emotionally for my labour or the post natal period. What it did was intellectually prepare me for delivery but we did not discuss what our labour plans looked like and how we would deal with a labour that did not go as planned. This cursory approach would be fine for someone who had a textbook delivery but for me, my worse case scenario happened and I was not prepared emotionally for this.
I believe that if I had done additional research into prenatal classes in Toronto and the different philosophies out there, I would have been in a better frame of mind.
I recently came across The Nesting Place http://www.thenestingplace.ca/ which is run by Amanda Spakowski who is also a doula. I met with her and we discussed her philosophy of Birthing from Within. As it says on her website "Birthing naturally means birthing in the way that comes naturally to you". This was a refreshing thought as Amanda prepares her parents-to-be for their ideal birth but also for the unexpected. The question of "How would you deal with your worst case scenario" is asked and parents have time to answer this question which in turn prepares you to handle the unknowns of labour.
What was also interesting in my conversation was Amanda's deep understanding of the difficulties of the post partum period and I was happy to learn that this is discussed in her classes as well.
Amanda addresses what you need to know about your delivery including:
•The stages of labour and labour support
•Specific techniques for pain coping, including compassionate use of epidurals and other medical support
•How to communicate with your health care provider
•Handling the unexpected during childbirth, physically and emotionally
•Birth art to explore feelings, fears and positive intentions
•Becoming a parent – the partner’s perspective
•Preparing for postpartum
•Caring for your new baby
I wish I had found her classes before I had my girls.
For more information on the Birthing From Within philosophy please visit http://www.birthinfromwithin.com/.