The Bunny Family Goes to School
Last night Mr. Bunny and I went to our first HOLY SHIT PREGNANCY CAN RESULT IN A REAL BABY class, Infant Care. It was strange on a number of levels for a number of reasons.
First, we were both grumpy, having worked all day on not enough sleep. Since the class was at the hospital across the street from my office, we foolishly chose to meet up for dinner at the hospital cafeteria. The revolting fare further soured my mood, leading to a mini squabble in which I blamed him for not wanting to be there. Just another reflection of my anxiety that his more relaxed attitude towards planning and information-seeking indicates that I will be all on my own when it comes to raising Bun Bun. (Recall the housedress, fried bologna, dead fridge on porch vision…) Then I started freaking out because we were going to be the sullen couple everyone would feel sorry for because we were clearly on the brink of divorce. WOW. Anyway, we apologized to each other several times, but I was still extra annoyed every time he checked his phone or sighed with exhaustion during the class. I mean, FUCK. If I can gestate our fetus, the least he can do is sit through a class with some goodwill.
Second, this class marked a transition from baby as Highly Theoretical to baby as Quite a Bit More Concrete. While I certainly try to visualize Bun Bun as a real screaming, shitting, refusing-to-feed-properly entity (I mean, I visualize the good stuff too, but that comes easily), there’s something about a bunch of photos of newborns that makes it all seem more real. Newborns with their hideous and yet quite standard rashes and blotches and assorted blemishes. And of course the whole point of the class is to help people start making that transition, getting hip to the reality of, you know, infant care. Still, it was our first brush with the less romantic, more serious aspects of this whole project, and it was…exciting, and yet…sobering.
Third, this class involved Other People. Mr. Bunny said afterwards, It was weird being around other people! Which is very true. We rarely interact with other people as a couple these days. And these people were all pregnant couples, which made us feel like we were on a new planet. And some of them were kinda awful. I particularly hated the guy who, when asked to list a major anxiety, said he’d been with his partner for eighteen years and that they knew each other very well and that he had no anxieties about parenting at all. I mean, BULLY FOR HIM, but I secretly hope that he discovers knowing your partner doesn’t inoculate you against sleep-deprivation fueled screaming and weeping matches and misunderstandings and late night episodes of terror. (For the record, my major anxiety: I’m afraid that my baby will die. The Other People seemed a bit taken aback by that.)
Anyway, I think this was a necessary stage to pass though, I’m just struck by how much one little class can reveal about my inner demons. This weekend is our (private–no Other People at least…) C-section class, so we’ll see what that one reveals. Tip: put your money on feelings of massive inadequacy and sadness about not being able to deliver vaginally.