Fourteen years ago, pregnant with our first child, Elaine and I began a birthing class at the old Newberg Hospital. Our friends Shawn and Katrina joined us in the same group, and what a group it was. There was the romance novel writer and her husband, another couple from our church, another couple with more years between them than Elaine and I had yet travelled the sun (and who split up within six months of the birth of their baby.)
There were several unique things about our group; at 26, Elaine and I were some of the youngest in the group. Most of the classes had much younger folks, the nurses said. And my goodness, did we bond. We had a lot of fun, starting when we toured the hospital and two of the moms started joking about hooking up the painkillers and the epidurals right in the middle of the 2nd trimester.
We had birthing class reunions. I am not making this up. We actually ended up meeting more times after our children were all born than we did in the actual birth class sessions. We had a six month reunion, birthday parties, Christmas parties…if I hadn’t been a part of it myself, I would think somebody was making the whole thing up. The romance novelist ended up writing a book based on our class; embellished, of course. I never read the book, so I don’t know how my character turned out. I hope I ended up the comic relief.
Here’s a picture to show you I am not making this up, taken at the 2 year old birthday party:
So last night, 14 years later, I sat in the same room with 4 of the moms and kids from this birthing class. It was the Newberg High School gymnasium, and we were all there for high school orientation for our almost grown up babies. When you add Talli into the equation, the five on the left side of the picture above were all there. (She’s the third from the left, and of course she was Natalie back then…) 🙂
Let me take a deep breath and write that again: I was at a high school orientation for my daughter.
It’s a shocking reminder that the years are flying by; but I’m glad for this community I live in. Shawn and Katrina are moving back to Newberg, which means that including their son and Talli, 6 of the kids from our birthing class will matriculate as freshman. That’s a stability of place that you don’t very often see, and one of the unique things I like about living here.