Weekend: Birth Education Class

The last seven Sundays, I have been taking a birth education class as the last thing I need for my doula certification.  The class I am taking is through The Bradley Method, a method that is for moms and their partners who want to focus on having a natural childbirth.

As outlined on the Bradley Website, the class is 12 weeks long and each week focuses on a specific topic:

Class 1. Introduction to The Bradley Method®
Class 2. Nutrition in Pregnancy
Class 3. Pregnancy
Class 4. The Coach's Role
Class 5. Introduction to First Stage Labor
Class 6. Introduction to Second Stage Labor
Class 7. Planning Your Birth
Class 8. Variations and Complications / Postpartum Preparation
Class 9. Advanced First Stage Techniques
Class 10. Advanced Second Stage Techniques
Class 11. Being a Great Coach / Are You Ready?
Class 12. Preparing for Your New Family

Each class also covers nutrition, exercise, positive communication, coaching, and relaxation techniques.

For me, this means sitting in on a class of nine pregnant couples as they learn about what is happening during their pregnancy and what to expect from labor and beyond.  My role is to learn from the teacher about how to be a good birth educator, to practice my doula skills through talking with parents, and fill in any gaps in my own education.  I've especially enjoyed watching the dads communicate with the moms.  They seem really engaged and enthusiastic about their babies, even if a little weirded out by the whole process.