- mow the lawn
- wash the dog
- mop the kitchen floor
- replace the battery in the smoke detector
- vacuum the stairs
- cook dinner
- unload the dishwasher
- reload the dishwasher
- write an email
In fact, xkcd had a wonderful webcomic on this very subject today.
Click the link above if the image in the blog is too small to read.
Essentially, I've got a lot of balloons in the air right now and I'm just trying to make sure I hold onto the most important ones.
I'm not much of one for making lists. I primarily shoot from the hip and figure if I forgot something important, I'll remember it later.
Which leads my to our prenatal class. Aren't I just the best at segues?
Saturday we went to our prenatal class. Now, we had the option to go to four two-hour seminars or just get the whole thing wrapped up in one eight-hour birthing extravaganza. I'm a guy who likes to rip off the band-aid in one fell swoop. Thankfully, I married a woman who is also a fan of the approach.
We got there on time -- thanks to Em getting us out the door -- and we were the first ones there other than the instructor. She was nice enough. Not quite as crunchy-granola-breath-patchouli-wearing as I might have expected, but seemed rather low-key and the right energy for a bunch of people embarking on bringing their first child into the world.
The class itself (consisting of five other couples other than us) looked about as engaged as a class of Seniors the last week before graduation.
Em's had books all around the house for some time and we've watched a number of documentaries, so much of the information was already familiar. The instructor tried her damnedest to get the class engaged, but they just wouldn't budge.
The class is conducted in the basement of the Birthing Center. So the layout looks like this:
|Le expertly rendered birthing center|
I was just getting bored enough to start making a list in my head of all the stuff I need to get done before the baby gets here when the sounds started. It began as a low moan but suddenly rose to a fever pitched scream. I imagine the woman in the birthing suite immediately above our heads looked something like this:
|Bloodcurdling, thy name is|
...at least that's what she sounded like. Suddenly unable to focus on my list making, my attention turned to the instructor. She noticed the screams (of course she noticed them. The woman was screaming bloody murder. What I mean to say is that she acknowledged the screams) and thought that putting a movie on and turning the volume up might help to drown out the woman upstairs.
The screams definitely went against everything the instructor had been preaching...thinking of yourself "opening like a flower" and having the "power of a contraction wrap around you" and the "counter-productivity of the act of screaming" itself.
The video she chose to put on was this one. CAUTION: BEFORE YOU CLICK THIS LINK TAKE A MINUTE AND CONSIDER THAT THESE ARE WOMEN GIVING BIRTH. IN A SQUATTING POSITION. IT'S CRAZY GRAPHIC. SO DON'T CLICK IT UNLESS YOU WANT TO SEE FOOTAGE OF WOMEN GIVING BIRTH. IN THE SQUATTING POSITION. OH, AND IF I WASN'T PERFECTLY CLEAR IN THE PREVIOUS CAPS LOCK TEXT, THIS IS CLEARLY NOT SAFE FOR WORK. AS WOMEN ARE GIVING BIRTH. IN THE SQUATTING POSITION.
|Actual. Statue. Used. In. Movie.|
Yes, that's the real title of the movie. The cliff-notes version (of the 10 minute film) is this: a bunch of women give birth in the squatting position. As the title would imply. But what blows your mind, is that there are rarely doctors present. Mind you, this was filmed in 1979, and it was shot in Brazil as a anthropological piece. But the babies are born, perfectly fine, without anyone catching them -- they land on a soft bed and the moms pick them up like nothing happened.
For those of you not wanting/willing/able to watch the video the children come out slowly at first and then, the minute the shoulders clear, they...well...it's kind of like this:
|And BOOM goes the baby|
After the first six times, you get kind of used to it. I did lean over to Em at one point and mention that they should probably have some kind of bumpers set up so the child doesn't overshoot the landing, but at one point I looked at the guy closest to the TV (we were sat in a semi-circle) and this was the face he was making:
Which was unfortunate for him, as his wife was 36 weeks pregnant. I think I'm a pretty bad procrastinator, but if you have no idea what's about to happen to your wife, you'd probably benefit from taking some time to acclimate to the idea.
After the video was done, she let us go for lunch.
Nope, not kidding. Fifteen babies born in the squatting position and then off to get some grub.
The rest of the class in the afternoon was pretty tame. They took us through some relaxation and pain management techniques and then let us know the rules and regs of birth at the center. Probably the most important thing I walked away from the class with was knowing it's probably best of install the rear-facing infant car seat before the day your child enters the world.
Which is yet another thing to add to my ever growing list.