I Blogged Myself

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Wednesday, July 19, 2006

I'm Against Natal Classes

Last Saturday (and the Saturday before that) Wifey and I set out at the ungodly hour of 8:30am to attend antenatal classes. Two Saturday sessions of four hours each.

Things were motoring along well until the instructor (Geraldine) broke out her horror video collection.

The first one was okay, although the single shot of the baby beginning to poke its head through looked gross enough.

After that video had screened, Geraldine said, "Okay, we've just watched a birth that went really well and had no complications. Now let's have a look at one that doesn't go very well at all."

We all groaned.

The second video contained such images as I never want to see again as long as I live. Only kidding, it wasn't that bad.

Except the bit where the doctor casually sliced the mother so the baby's head could fit through. That bit was a little off-putting. But hey -- that's what happens, eh.

Six things I learned at antenatal classes:

1. Ewww.
2. Oh, yuck!
3. *vomits*
4. Blech!
5. That's disgusting.
6. I'm glad I'm a man.

So all-in-all it was a very educational time. Something else I learned was that (for once; and this will surprise those of you who know me in real life) I wasn't the biggest smartarse in the room.

*dramatic chord*

I know; it's amazing, isn't it. There was a guy there called Frank whose wife was constantly dropping her head in shame and embarrassment while he made jokes and laughed with pretty much just the other guys in the room. On a couple of occasions (when he'd made too many jokes in quick succession), she snapped at him and yelled, "Frank! That's enough!", which worked for about half an hour until he started up again.

Not being the lead jokester in the room left me feeling very out-of-place. It was an alien sensation and I didn't know what was expected of me. I felt lost and unsure of my place in the world. Sure, I still made a couple of hilarious comments, but no one else approached the level of 'wrong comments' that was set by Frank.

One golden moment was when Geraldine asked the fathers-to-be in the class who was going to be The Ideal Father. I put my hand up and said in a tone that implied it would be no hassle at all, "Yep. Me." Geraldine asked how I was going to do that, and I replied nonchalantly, "Oh, I don't want to reveal my secrets to everyone, sorry."

I think it loses something when it appears in print, but when delivered just right, I assure you it was very funny. (Ahem.)

In summary, if there's ever a next time, I'm going to bring along some popcorn for the bit where she pops her videos in the VCR (but I'll be watching the faces of the people around me for my entertainment). I'd just better not be out-smartarsed again.

I had fun, though. It's an experience all expectant parents have to go through. The whole thing is very rewarding and leaves you feeling more sure of what's to come and that you're prepared and capable of dealing with whatever nasty surprises might be waiting for you around the corner. Also, they supplied a free lunch before we left, so I stuffed my pockets with jam doughnuts and took off.


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6 Comments:

At Wednesday, July 19, 2006 8:59:00 pm, Blogger MelbourneGirl said...

sounds great bevis. but sucked in, if you believe this:

"The whole thing is very rewarding and leaves you feeling more sure of what's to come and that you're prepared and capable of dealing with whatever nasty surprises might be waiting for you around the corner."

nothing prepares you for how your life will turn upside down. yes, there's the joy and the feeling of being so blessed. but it's also going to be the hardest type of work you and wifey have ever done.

just so you can't say afterward that no one told you how hard it would be. i am telling you. it's going to be really hard. you have no idea.

to finish on a funny note. at my ante-natal class, the midwife told a funny story where a couple she'd "instructed" did perineum exercises. if you don't want to know about this, look away... now

perineum stretching involved the husband getting down between his wife's legs and getting his fingers in and stretching her vaginal opening. the idea being that when she gave birth, assuming it would be vaginal, it wouldn't hurt so much. anyway, the birth passes and the next time the woman sees the midwife, after being asked how it went, the first thing she said was "it wasn't nearly as painful as those f'ing perineum stretches."

again, at the time, funny. you had to be there.

one last thing. my theory is in situations like that, the dude cracking the loudest jokes is the dude who is shitting himself the most.

would i be right?

(sorry i swore and said "vaginal" twice. forgive me?)

 
At Wednesday, July 19, 2006 9:38:00 pm, Blogger Melly` said...

Hahahaha - I suspect your wife was VERY PLEASED Frank was there. He has allowed you to score extra points... honestly! Thanks for sharing the moments with us!

 
At Wednesday, July 19, 2006 11:20:00 pm, Blogger BEVIS said...

MelbourneGirl, haha, your apology amused me greatly!! Yes, of course you're forgiven. Actually, no, you're not. Forgiving you implies that you needed to seek forgiveness, and I wasn't offended by or worried about your comment at all! So let's say no more about this 'forgiveness' business.

As for the rest, you may very well be right about Frank's reasons for insessantly cracking jokes. He was using far less caution and restraint than I'd have used if he wasn't there and I assumed my rightful place as Chief Jokester, so perhaps his tendancy to say whatever silly comment popped into his head was (as you're suggesting) the result of his fear. He certainly had that nervous twitch that people unaccustomed to being in the spotlight tend to have when everyone's looking at them. (I don't suffer from that problem myself. I was born to star!)

And no, I don't really think that antenatal classes have totally prepared me for whatever lies ahead. I was just talking crap in an attempt to build up to my doughnut-theft kicker. I know that whatever happens from childbirth on, is going to completely change our lives and test all our limits. I'd be kidding myself if I thought otherwise. :)

That 'perineum' story was one of the things Geraldine told us (or a variation of it, anyway -- not the same 'punchline', though). Comedy gold.

Thank you for your long comment. I always love it when you have a lot to say!! :)

(No, really.)


Melly`, welcome! You make a very good point; I hadn't thought about it like that! Hmm, I wonder if I can get an X-Box 360 out of this new mileage I've earned ...

:)

 
At Thursday, July 20, 2006 1:07:00 pm, Blogger MelbourneGirl said...

so the old perineum story is a common warm up joke knocking around the ante-natal classes?

those midwives need some new material.

what a glorious day it is today. hope you are enjoying it.

 
At Thursday, July 20, 2006 5:20:00 pm, Blogger Susanne said...

Poor Frank's wife. My boy is the funny one/ centre of attention, but he's not that bad, luckily for me.

 
At Friday, July 21, 2006 9:05:00 pm, Blogger Javatari said...

Ah yes, I remember after the birth seeing a doctor taking a needle and thread to my wife's genitalia and thinking to myself, I'm glad I don't have to go through this.

If you get that Xbox 360, we'll have to get together and exchange games! :-)

 

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