The Case for a Second-Trimester Prenatal Class


Who knew nine (ish) months could seem so long, and yet so short all at the same time?  Every pregnancy is unique, but mine usually go like this:

    4-12 weeks: feeling tired and queasy, but excited.  Nothing feels quite real yet, and my due date seems very far away.

    13-30 weeks:  This is my favourite time.  That belly is big enough to be obviously pregnant but not so big that I feel like a turtle trying to roll over.  I get to see my baby on an ultrasound. I still have lots of time to get things done.

    30-37 weeks: Nesting!  Doing all the things! Panicking regularly about how much there is left to do!  By this point I’m getting uncomfortable and I’m ready to be done with this pregnancy thing.

    37-40 weeks:  Okay, baby could come any time, I’d better make sure everything is good to go. I start making up things that “need” to be done just to distract myself.  I’m so. over. being. pregnant.

    40 weeks-birth*: Every day feels like a century.  This pregnancy will never end.

*I’ve only had one kid out of my four arrive before his estimated due date and yet every time I hope they might decide to give me a break and come early.

All that to say, most of us end up with a pretty long to-do list by the third trimester.  If you’re pregnant now or planning to be, how about giving your future self a break and booking your prenatal class for your second trimester?  Here are five reasons why.

  1. By the second trimester (weeks 13-28 of pregnancy), things are usually feeling a bit more real and most people are ready to hear about birth and life after baby.  First trimester might feel a little early, especially for partners (who sometimes take a bit longer simply because they aren’t the ones physically feeling the symptoms of growing a baby).

  2. When you start looking for a prenatal class in your second trimester, you have time to find the perfect fit.  There are lots of prenatal class options with different aims, philosophies and styles and varying time commitments.  It’s nice to have a good connection with your instructor too, as you’ll be discussing some pretty intimate topics.

  3. A second trimester prenatal class also gives you the chance to absorb the information you’re given, and adjust your plans based on what you learn.  You might want time to practice breathing and relaxation techniques, or hire a doula, or even consider changing care providers.

  4. Perhaps the most obvious reason to avoid waiting to attend a prenatal class - make sure you get it done before your baby comes!  Babies have their own schedules and like to surprise us sometimes by making their entrance earlier than anticipated. Better to be prepared early than miss out completely!

  5. And last but certainly not least, there are better things to do in the last weeks of pregnancy than attend a prenatal class!  Date your partner while you can still leave the house without a truckload of baby paraphernalia. Buy yourself some comfy clothes to hang out in at home once baby arrives.  Prepare yourself some freezer meals or set up a meal train so you don’t have to worry about food for the first few weeks. Read some positive birth stories. Finish up those tasks that your nesting instinct just won’t let you forget.  Whatever it is, I’m sure you can find something to fill your time if you already feel prepared and confident about your upcoming birth.

If you are on the hunt for a perfect prenatal class, get in touch!  We can customize a private class that fits your schedule perfectly, and you won’t even have to leave your home.  Or if you know a few other people who are expecting, build your own group class and have some fun together learning about birth.  Let me know what works for you and I can help you build your confidence in your body, your baby and your birth!