512-2627 to REGISTER!
Where can you learn about and prepare for normal birth?
BIRTHNG YOUR BABY classes provide an opportunity for parents to learn about normal birth in a supportive environment. Parents are encouraged to learn, explore, ask questions, and practice so they can make informed choices for mother and baby's care.
on the FAQs below to find out more information.
For more information, contact Christina at 512-2627
by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BIRTHING YOUR BABY CLASSES are flexible and individualized. The content of the classes is partially determined by who is taking them and what those expectant parents' needs are. For example, if the class participants are later in their pregnancy, we'll skip early pregnancy material.
Or, I'm happy to work with you if you want to take an a la carte approach and only do an early pregnancy class, or supplement other classes you're taking with the postpartum class, etc. Give me a call and we can discuss the options.
Below are the topics most commonly discussed and practiced.
Full birth-series classes are usually three hours long, with a break for snacks and chatting. Sunday Special 2-day classes are four hours long. Either way, you can expect to be active throughout each class by praticing exercises, relaxation techniques, and pain-coping skills; reflecting on and exploring a variety of topics, viewing and discussing charts, models, birth stories, and videos; and role-playing scenarios. Although there is some presentation of materials, one of the most important benefits of these classes is that we will go way beyond classic "lecturing" to enable you and your partner to become actively involved in the learning process.
Like anything else, you'll get out of these classes what you put into them! So, most classes will include follow-up "homework" - reading handouts, drafting a birth plan, practicing exercises...Call me at 512-2627 or email me at email@example.com for more information!
understand that some people need classes that accomodate their demanding
schedules. For familes who are looking for two-day classes, I offer the
meet in Winthrop, about 15 minutes from the Augusta area and about 30
minutes from Lewiston.
are several scenarios for scheduling classes:
Registration is simple. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 512-2627. We will talk about options for classes, and you can tell me about your pregnancy. After that, we set up a class schedule or I fit you into a group class that hasn't begun yet.
In addition to group classes, I can schedule personalized, private classes if that best fits your family's needs. Private classes are more appealing than group classes for some expectant parents. Sometimes work schedules make evening classes difficult. Other times past experience(s), bed-rest, or reserved personalities make a mom or dad more comfortable in a private setting. If you are on bedrest, I can even make housecalls!
I am currently scheduling private classes for this fall and winter, so please call me at 512-2627 for specific day and time information!
Call me at 512-2627 to schedule a private refresher course. We can cover the topics that most interest you as a second (or more!)-time around parent. We can also explore any issues or concerns about past birth experiences.
Yes! You are welcome to come by yourself. I do recommend that, if possible, birthing women have some type of support during their births - maybe a mother, a sister, a close friend, or a doula. Any and all support people are welcome at any of the classes. For example, if you want to bring your partner/mother/sister/friend as your main support to all of the classes and then any extra support people to the coping strategies class, that can work very well. There is no extra fee for bringing someone special, just let me know ahead of time so I can prepare for handouts and activities.
BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes fit very well for families planning a homebirth
and I've had several clients go on to have wonderful homebirths. What
we do in class works well wherever the birth is planned. There is some
information about hospital procedures and the types of medications available
in hospitals, but it is useful to be familiar with these options in
case you change your mind or in the unlikely event of a transfer.
Wonderful! BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes do not insist on or advocate for any one type of birthing experience. YOU are the one who is pregnant, who is going to do the birthing (and supporting) work - this is YOUR BABY. The decisions about your care during pregnancy and birth are yours. BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes are for expectant parents who want to learn about as many options as possible so that they can make informed choices.
Studies have been done that attempt to pinpoint the elements of a "satisfying" birth. Of course a healthy baby and mother are of utmost importance. But there are other factors too, described in the classic book A Good Birth, A Safe Birth: "Pain relief is not the key to satisfaction. The woman's feelings of mastery, of control and coping well, and of having an active part in decisions about her labor are the most important reasons a woman feels satisfied with the birth" (Korte and Scaer 23).
In other words, there isn't a specific process guaranteed to provide a satisfactory birthing experience; instead, it depends on what each woman perceives as "mastery", as "coping well" and as having "an active part" in decision-making. Education about the birthing process, exploration of your hopes and concerns about birth, practicing a variety of coping skills, and developing strategies for communicating with your caregivers enhance each of these factors, whether you have an all natural birth or a birth with the compassionate use of medication.
There are, of course, many compelling reasons why women decide to approach their childbirths naturally:
BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes support natural childbirth for the precious reasons listed above. However, neither planning nor practice can ensure a birth that is free from medication and/or medical assistance. In fact, there are times when the compassionate use of medication offers the best experience for the mother or when medical assistance becomes essential for the well-being of mother and/or baby. Understanding the benefits and risks of common procedures and medications helps women and their partners make the best possible choices for the care of mother and baby during pregnancy and birth.
BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes also support women who want to explore pain medications as an informed choice. For some, an epidural is a very important option. We'll discuss ways to enhance an birth with an epidural and how to maximize the benefits and reduce the risks of using an epidural. Women who are considering an epidural are exactly the ones who should know how they work and what the risks and benefits are ahead of time! There are also instances when knowing and having practiced a variety of natural pain-coping skills may come in useful, even for a woman who is planning on using an epidural: slow early labor (not time yet for an epidural) or a very fast labor (not enough time for an epidural), for example. BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes are about helping you pack a "tool chest" of pain-coping strategies, both natural and medical, so you can make the best choices for the birth of your child.Call me at 512-2627 or email me at email@example.com for more information!
The Birth Book, Dr. William Sears offers an explanation of the
differences between independent classes and those offered by some hospitals.
Sears explains that "in-hospital classes prepare you for the birthing
policies of that hospital" and further that "some hospital-based
birth educators, constrained by their own hospital's birthing policies,
prepare parents more to be compliant patients than to be informed consumers"
Finally, BIRTHING YOUR BABY is committed to flexible, individualized attention. All classes are small - no more than five couples. Students are encouraged to bring up questions and concerns to be addressed during class time; for example, if someone has questions about gestational diabetes or a certain prenatal test, or wants to discuss the possibility of home birth, or is struggling with how to balance pregnancy and work... all these can become a part of class with input from peers and instructor.Call me at 512-2627 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!
1. BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes are centered in a deep belief in a woman's ability to give birth that birth can be an empowering, transforming experience in a woman's life that birth is an essentially safe process for baby and mother. The philosophy that drives these classes also inspires confidence and joy in the birth process and in your new lives as parents.
2. BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes are independent. I am not required to teach from a rigid curriculum that only "approves" of certain kinds of birth. This is your birth your baby!! I will provide up-to-date, evidence-based information and then you can make your best decisions for a healthy and satisfying birth experience. One of my main goals is for you to be able to make informed decisions about your care - to have the necessary background and the communication skills to maintain an open dialogue with your caregivers so that you can be an active participant in your birth.
3. I believe small classes work best, so there will never be more than five couples/series. Small classes allow for more peer interaction, for more discussion, and for the class content to be personalized.
4. I know that four weeks of three hour classes may seem like a lot. But when you consider that we discuss everything from how you're both feeling that particular week and addressing any questions that have come up, to self-care during pregnancy, prenatal testing, nutrition, and exercise, to the emotional and physical aspects of labor, comfort measures, birth positions, and communicating with your caregivers, to the transitions of post-partum life, new baby care, breastfeeding and a lot more - the time seems to fly by you'll be talking, writing, laughing, drawing, moving around (a lot!), viewing videos, discovering sensations, and practicing, practicing, practicing! Sometimes it'll be fun, other times it might be challenging or uncomfortable but that's also a part of learning.
5. BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes are consumer-oriented. In other words, I am not "prepping" you for the policies and routines for any particular birth place or caregiver. As Dr. Sears writes in The Birth Book, "some hospital-based educators, constrained by their own hospital's birthing policies, prepare parents to more to be compliant patients than to be informed consumers" (53). Instead, BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes will teach you (and give you lots of time to practice) a variety of coping skills, relaxation techniques, and positions for labor and birth. Labor is impossible to predict, so the more tricks you can pull out of your bag, the better prepared you will be!
6. In addition to the individualized class attention, I provide (free) unlimited telephone and email consultation. Any time (pregnancy, birth, post-partum) you or your partner has questions or concerns, I welcome discussing them. I can research a topic offer emotional support and affirmation or simply listen.
7. I have a well-stocked pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting "lending library" that includes books, magazines, and videos that I encourage you to borrow from at any time. I have read all of these selections and can help you find ones which address the topics that interest you.
8. BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes encourage you to be open to the possibilities of birth. I will help you create a birth "plan", but we will also talk about what the "next best thing" is if everything doesn't go according to plan. Studies have shown that women who feel like they coped well and were active in making decisions about their care had the most satisfying birth experiences. Regardless of your plans for birth, whether this is your first birth or your third, BIRTHING YOUR BABY can provide the information and hands-on practice time to enhance your birth experience.
Call me at 512-2627 or email me at email@example.com for more information!
Women choose to get ready for birth in many ways, and during different
stages of their pregnancy. Some things, like choosing a doctor or midwife,
are best done at the beginning, but can also be done later (switching
care providers). Other things, like practicing coping strategies, are
usually done towards the end, but can be started much earlier.
Not all childbirth classes are the same... so investigate thoroughly before you choose one. Do the classes cover the information you want? How many people will be attending? Do they offer evidence-based, up-to-date information? Do they fit into your schedule?
Here are a few of the ways BIRTHING YOUR BABY classes can help you:
Unfortunately, birth isn't something most people in our culture have the opportunity to personally connect with by watching or participating in one, or even by viewing a realistic birth on television. Births on drama shows are just that - dramatic - to get you to come back after the commercials! And don't think Baby Story can tell the whole story in 30 minutes, either!!
Even though our bodies know how to give birth, our brains have a significant
impact - how we feel about birth and how we feel during
birth influences the birth process.
more information, contact Christina Kennedy at 512-2627