Tonight we attended our newborn care class! This is something our agency requires for all first-time parents.
If you remember from a post called “Rabbit Trail” back in May, the act of finding this class was an adventure all on its own. But once we found it, everything lined up perfectly: Not only was it the type of “class” I would have wanted to find (an interactive workshop), but the title even says it’s for foster and adoptive parents, AND we had friends taking it with us!
(Sad to not have a picture here… but trust me, they’re great!)
Chris and Rachael both work at the church where I work, and they are expecting their first son in November. Taking the class with people we knew made it instantly more comfortable. Rachael has decided to do a home birth, and her midwife’s assistant happened to be one of the leaders of the class.
The class was slightly “information overload”… but it was still very informative and well done! They served us dinner, provided lots of great take-home materials and resources, and had about 10 different “stations” set up around the room for you to work through at your own pace (with some help and guidance).
We learned about everything from bathing, to swaddling, to early literacy activities, to installing a car seat, to what poop should look like. :) (Sorry for the TMI!)
In other words… just the right amount of fear and education to make us feel like most first-time parents probably do: excited and nervous as heck!
Instead of going through everything we did and learned, I’ll just have to take you through a couple favorites and “bests”…
Best visual aid:
Each bead represents one hour, and both of us had one of these charts with 24 beads apiece. (Sorry about the bad iPhone photo; the top two categories are Time Alone and Socialization, and the bottom green category is Work in Home.) We each had to arrange our beads for how a typical 24-hour day is spent currently, then they gave us the hours that are (typically) spent doing different things as you care for a newborn… and we had to rearrange our beads accordingly. This one took some thought and work! Pulling the beads out of various categories to replace that “time” with caring for a baby was a great visual. The photo above is Trey’s “after baby” chart… I told him he was generous in his sleep category. ;)
I loved practicing how to wear the baby sling! Have I done this in a previous life?? (As the saying goes.)
Trey changing the babydoll diaper. :)
Best “bait and switch”:
We had a “Newborn Sleep” quiz with multiple-choice questions for both of us to answer separately (Parent A and Parent B). The questions were things like: When do newborns sleep through the night?, How long do newborns sleep?, How often do newborns nap?, What is the best way to get a baby to sleep?, etc… with 3 or 4 answers to choose from for every question. When we finished, we opened the folder to find that — after all that — every single answer was: All babies are different. Well played, baby teachers!
All in all a great class, and lots more to read over and discuss here at home. We think things are busy now (and they are!). But I’ll end with a “tweet” from today (haha)…
“There is so much going on right now, I totally forgot I’m turning 30 in 2 days… Ha! Life is so sweet and blurry and wonder-FULL…”