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Nervous first pregnancy!

8 replies

LauraGas · 12/04/2006 18:32

Hi guys!

This is my first time on mumsnet and it does look like it's a great help.

I'm 33 weeks pregnant with my first baby and to be honest feel a bit isolated/in the dark about the whole thing.

My midwife is ok but has told me that there aren't any ante-natal classes being run in our area (I'm on the Bedfordshire/Northamptonshire border)or via the hospital (Bedford) due to lack of people to run them. Have also tried several times to contact the NCT but have not had any calls/emails returned! My mum says that I don't need to go to a class ("we didn't have them in my day" etc) but to be honest I feel really nervous about the whole labour thing and scared that I won't know how to breathe properly etc.

Can any of you recommend any sites/books with good breathing and relaxation techniques?

Thanks in anticipation!

OP posts:
waterfalls · 12/04/2006 18:37

No advise but bumping for youSmile

oh and welcome.

zippy539 · 12/04/2006 18:54

Another bump and welcome :)

zippy539 · 12/04/2006 18:56

Meant to say - this is a weird time because most folk are doing beds/baths etc so if you drop off the end of the board don't be shy about bumping yourself up later in the evening! :)

CarolinaMooncup · 12/04/2006 21:42

you will know how to breathe properly, promise Smile. You just need to try and deliberately relax your muscles and breathe slowly - you might find yourself instinctively tensing up and holding your breath during a contraction but it will hurt more that way. There isn't really any special technique to it.

There is a lot of stuff about relaxing in the natural/active birth books by authors like Sheila Kitzinger and Janet Balaskas but personally I found they put so much emphasis on benefits of positive thinking that I found myself feeling guilty when I ended up with a caesarean and wondering if I just hadn't thought positively enough Sad.

None of the pregnancy books I read were that great on birth tbh - I think you can learn more from MN than from a lot of them.

If you want more pregnant company, have you tried contacting neighbouring NCT branches to see if you have more joy with them than your own branch?

HonorMatopoeia · 12/04/2006 21:48

I'd echo what CM said about other local NCT branches, one of my friends did this as our branch wasn't that active at the time of her pregnancy. I found the NCT class good - didn't really use a lot of it if I'm honest. Infact the best thing was the teacher playing a loud fog horn noise that started quietly then got louder then faded away again. She said this was what a contraction was like (i.e. it builds up then dies off) she made us breathe through it and although it sounds daft, that really did help during labour.
Oops and should have said....welcome! Finding mumsnet got me through the latter weeks of my pregnancy!

wannaBe1974 · 12/04/2006 21:52

no specific advice re antinatal classses etc, although I would say that no amount of classes and practice of breathing techniques can prepare you for labour. Every labour is different, and some on here who have had more than one child will tell you that they had different births with each of their children. So your mother is right in that really a class is not necessary, although it will give you an idea of what options are open to you in terms of pain relief/type of birth you would like, and it also gives you the chance to meet some other mums who are in the same position as you. You should ask your midwife if she can arrange for you to have a tour round your maternity unit, it will then at least give you an idea of where you'll be going and the procedures when you go into labour.

You may already have an idea of the kind of birth you would like, but I would say that it is best to go into this with no pre-conceived ideas. Keep your mind totally open to anything, because although you may now feel for instance that you want no pain relief, nothing can prepare you for the actual pain of labour when it arrives, and as I said before, every labour is different, and things can happen very quickly. Don't dismiss anything out of hand, just remember, the baby has to come out, and your midwife/obstitrician is there to help you and ensure your baby is delivered safely. Rely on your partner for as much support as he can give you, and try to relax.

Sorry if this is waffly,


sniff · 13/04/2006 11:12

I am about to have my 3rd and have never been to a class for the same reasons as you I was fine couldnt you ask your midwife to put on a class on the antenatal day at the doctors

also you could join the ante natal threads here you get loads of advice and can ask anything you like

and I think all hospitals let you go and look around and explain the equipment to you if this would make things better I have recently moved and I am 34 weeks pregnant and I am going on a tour of the hospital so I know where every thing is and get myself used to the place!!

TuttiFrutti · 13/04/2006 12:28

Try your local library for books on pregnancy and birth, and take out a selection so you get the different points of view. I liked the book by Miriam Stoppard, and liked reading "Active Birth" by Janet Balaskas, although I have to say it was absolutely no help in practice!

I agree with Sniff, ring your local hospital and ask if they do tours of the maternity unit. Even if they don't run antenatal classes, most hospitals do tours at the weekend, and you may find it reassuring to see the wards and delivery rooms in advance.

Also agree with the advice re trying to contact a neighbouring NCT branch. My local NCT is fantastic, but it just depends on how active the local members are in your area.

Enjoy the preparation stage - it's an exciting time!

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