Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Sibling Class

Today, the kids participated in a sibling class offered by my delivering hospital. I looked into the class months ago, I even told the kids about it, but I didn't make reservations because I honestly anticipated the worst case scenario long before now. That scenario might have been strict bedrest, a NICU baby, or another loss -- I had no idea. I never imagined being stable and upright at 33 1/2 weeks pregnant and sitting in a classroom while my kids watched silly videos and learned how to change diapers and wrap a swaddling blanket.

I never dreamed we'd have a day like today -- but we did, and it was great!

Both kids received activity books to help them learn about their new sibling, then a nurse told them all about what to expect when the baby arrives. She introduced them to all sorts of baby gear and showed them pictures of what the baby would look like when first born.

Next, each child chose a baby doll on which to practice their sibling skills: holding, swaddling, feeding, burping, and diaper changing.

Bub was surprisingly serious about his role as the big brother and took excellent care of his "baby." In fact, while the other little boys were goofing off, he continued to practice the things he learned. I knew he would enjoy the class, I just had no idea he would stay so focused.

After honing their care-taking skills, the kids had a snack and watched a silly video about becoming a sibling. Then, we all took a hospital tour. We looked at some babies through the nursery window, walked through the antepartum wing, and triage area and the doors to the OR where I'll be taken for delivery. (Because of the TAC, I'll have a C-Section.)

We visited a delivery room where the other touring moms will labor and deliver. There, Gracie weighed her practice baby...

... and Bub gazed at an empty baby warmer. (It was at this point that I became choked up and had to discreetly step out of the room.)

After the tour, the kids returned to the classroom and made stuffed animals (outfitted with little hospital t-shirts) to commemorate the day.

Gracie chose a chocolate lad, declared her a girl, and named her "Kisses."

Bub made a black cat called "Shadow" and stuffed a wishing star inside.


  • Randi

    I'm so happy that you're getting the chance to do all of these 'normal' things. It looks like your kiddos are very ready for that new sister!

  • Stacy

    I love that they have a sibling class - and that your kids are old enough to understand! Looks like they are ready!

  • Jenny

    So fun! Looks like you had 2 very attentive children!
    I'm sure it became just a bit more real when seeing the baby warmer. I actually got a bit light headed and had to leave the delivery room on my tour. How neat to get to see your children learn how to be helpful to you and soon-to-be-born baby!

  • Emily

    It must be that time for me too because that pic of Bub and all my emotions made me tear up. I know there are so many that have prayed hard for your family, and it is so amazing to see everything come about. I can't wait to meet my new little niece and tell her how much her Auntie Em loves her, adores her, and how long we have prayed for her and her family. We love you guys. You are almost there, and I can't wait to see that lil bundle of joy.

  • Renae

    I'm so happy for you! I have only a glimpse of the emotions you must be feeling, but sometimes I'm surprised by my own tears when I see stuff in the NICU. Still praying that all goes well! The wonderful day is fast approaching. :D

  • amy

    I'm so grateful that you are at this stage & your kids were able to attend the class. My heart ached when I saw the picture of Bub with the warmer. I'm praying for little Brystol and your entire family - to have a safe, quick delivery & a happy/healthy mom & baby. Love you!!

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