13 things they really should teach in prenatal classes

Posted in Birth.

Did you go to prenatal classes when pregnant? I confess – I am a prenatal class drop-out. My partner and I went to the first two classes and then skipped the rest. It wasn’t that we thought we were experts – it was just that they were pretty late in the evening and TV, my purple onesie and a cuppa always won. But had our prenatal classes taught these things, well, perhaps we would have put down the remote …

1. How to tell the difference between a contraction and indigestion

Sometimes chicken can taste so good one minute and then ruin your life the next. Sure, there is a big difference between a poorly-cooked dinner and a uterus full of a baby plotting an escape, but sometimes it’s hard to tell which is which.

2. How to find a parking spot close to the hospital

No-one should have to have to walk three blocks while in labour! Why is it that every single person in the city wants to visit the hospital at the same time you go into labour? Walking any more than 200 steps while more than eight centimetres dilated should be illegal.

3. How to successfully walk to the toilet with an IV in

The cord gets wrapped around your belly and pulls at everything attached to you. And you need to bring your big bulky machine friend with you. It takes a pretty coordinated person to pull this one off.

4. How to work the vending coffee machine

My husband couldn’t figure this out if his life depended on it.


5. How to nicely explain to visitors that you are tired and need to sleep

Visitors are always welcome, except when you haven’t slept in three days, the baby is actually asleep for once, your breasts are in desperate need of relief and your bladder is about to explode. And we all know how much control we have over our bladders post-birth!

6. How to change a newborn’s nappy in the back of a car

This seems to be the place that most newborns like to do their first big bowel movement. Keep a towel in the back of your car for such occasions. And possibly a hose.

7. How to cook a meal with one hand

Bonus points if the course also explains how to do it while simultaneously breastfeeding.

8. How to deal with a Number Three … 

On your clothes, in the bath, on the car seat … Just what is a Number Three, you may ask? Imagine when Number One and Number Two join forces to create a monster Number Three poonami scenario. There should be an entire class dedicated to addressing the inevitable Number Three.

Dad changing baby nappy

9. How to change a boy’s nappy without being spurted in the face

It’s the law of baby boys – take nappy off, get a face full of pee. 

10. How to eat dinner while standing up and rocking at the same time

This is a life skill that all mums will most likely have mastered by week four.

11. How to load a baby into the car in the pouring rain

You will need all body parts to master this skill – your teeth to hold your keys, your hips to hold the carrier, your arms to shield baby from the rain, and your inner thighs to balance the nappy bag.

12. How to completely abandon all sense of spontaneity in favour of routine

Your world will revolve around baby awake and sleep time. This may require you to schedule dinners out for 4pm so that you can be back for a 7pm bedtime. It may mean you need to have your one glass of wine at 3pm because baby will need to be fed again at 6pm. And it most certainly means that any ‘alone’ time with hubby will take place during the twenty minute REM cycle when baby is in a deep sleep (most likely between the hours of 4am and 4:20am).

13. How to open baby toys without the need to use scissors, a knife or your teeth

You may not need to open any toys just yet – but there will come a time when you will. And there’s got to be an easier way to open packaged toys than tearing into them with your teeth, right? Right?!


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