...Let me tell you a little story....
When I was preparing for my Home Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC at home or HBAC), I had a literal gaggle of a support team.
I had my Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM), a monitrice (midwife's assistant with special training, who was my doula with my first birth and functioned at my HBAC as my primary midwife as she was completing midwifery school at the time- she is now a Certified Professional Midwife (CPM).
I also had another monitrice/midwife in training who was officially my doula (also now a CPM) and I had a friend who was just getting into doula work (I called her my Friend-la, and I highly recommend you get yourself one because she put my 3yo to bed while I was laboring after his overly excited run-in with DIVING in the birth pool, she also reassured my husband who is less than impressed with my labor sounds AND she made sure I was fed despite my protests).
I was also a trained doula myself and had completed some pregnancy/postpartum instructor training.
But guess what: I STILL ATTENDED CHILDBIRTH EDUCATION.
I needed the time each week to focus on my baby, my birth, my headspace. I needed the dedicated time to practice, to sort out my feelings, to face my fears, to get excited. And despite all my previous education, I STILL LEARNED SOMETHING NEW ABOUT BIRTH & LABORING. Because in a classroom setting, the other expecting couples have just as much to teach us as the instructor and because I was attending with the mindset of being a pregnant mama and not a birth professional ("beginner's mind").
SO, as you can see...I love me some doulas and midwives (PM me for community resource list if you're looking)
But the fact is, Childbirth Educators serve a completely separate and equally important role in your birth preparation.
If you desire an unmedicated birth, are first time parents, are preparing for a VBAC or simply planning for a different for a different birthing experience than your last, childbirth classes will prepare you on all levels- mentally, physically, and emotionally.
[Originally published for Spokane Birth Boot Camp]
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