So here we are – Saturday 4th May marks my pregnancy coming to term as I am 37 weeks today. Moley is due in 3 weeks but realistically could make an appearance any time now. The Boy and I have been to our NHS antenatal classes, and our hypnobirthing course. We’re learning what we can to be as prepared as possible for what is just around the corner.
I was approached by the wonderful Nia Capeling of Babi Antenatal who offered us another tool for our preparations. Nia is a former NHS Community Midwife who has now started up her own business offering bespoke antenatal and postnatal coaching. She popped round to our house to give us a one to one antenatal class so we could try the service out for ourselves.
Private vs NHS
Now I am definitely not knocking the Bumps to Babies class we did locally. It is amazing how much information they pack in to four short classes. However, they do have to be all things to all people. Regardless of your preferred birth plan and circumstances, they have to give you one size fits all antenatal and postnatal advice. The benefit of private coaching is that you can select which areas you would like more information in.
As we are practicing hypnobirthing, The Boy and I are both pretty comfortable with all the stages of labour and what will happen. However, there was still a lot of value in just running through the key points of our birth plan with Nia. She is full of the sort of extra information that you would expect only an experienced midwife to have. Plus I very much valued her independent status when getting advice on things which are considered ‘a given’ in the NHS – like physiological 3rd stage for example.
Reassurance on caring for a newborn
So for us, the key focus was getting more reassurance and advice on all the basic stuff. You know, the easy stuff that you suddenly realise you have never had to do? You don’t use soap on a newborn – did you know that? We didn’t. We went through lots of breastfeeding practical advice, bathing, dressing, nappies, sleep safety. All the things that you really can’t talk about enough to be honest. What to do if they cry. When they won’t stop crying. And continue to cry.
Oh, and just the most credible, logical and reassuring explanation of what the Baby Blues is, why it hits and how to help yourself stay calm and breathe on through it! I found Nia’s calm, professional manner to be incredibly reassuring. Her obvious experience and her easy going manner put me at my ease straightaway and made it very easy to open up to her right away, which I think gave me maximum value from the class. She didn’t mind having a laugh either, which is for the best in our house as that’s the only way we’re going to get through this whole birth thing!!
I know that not everyone has the luxury of being able to afford private antenatal classes. However, I do think that Nia’s services do represent good value for money given the bespoke nature of the support you can elect to receive from her. Forewarned is forearmed and I am massively grateful for the opportunity to privately put my questions to an expert.
The Boy and I were gifted a private antenatal class from Babi for the purposes of this review. However, my opinions of the service and the way I have chosen to present it here have not been externally influenced in any way and represent my honest view of the experience.