It is finally Monday morning at about 5 am and of course I haven’t been able to sleep all night. I know that I really needed to sleep and that it would be a really long, tough day but that made it even harder to relax. I also know that this will most likely be the day we will meet our little preemie girl. I am beyond nervous, worried about labor and delivery and terrified that something will be wrong with our baby. I feel unprepared and scared and I still feel like I could keep her in longer and that we would all be better off by that. That is apparently not an option though and as I lie awake in the hospital room that has been my home now for almost 4 weeks I dread the day ahead at the same time as I realize that I have to “get with the program” and fight for the best possible outcome. Even though there is not a whole lot I can do but following the doctor’s and nurse’s orders and suggestions I can have a positive attitude and continue to believe that everything will be okay. My positive attitude and outlook on my situation has helped me so far, I made it the four weeks until 34 week of pregnancy even though nobody thought I could and I surprised and amazed everyone. I can do it again; I can have an uncomplicated labor and deliver a baby who will be fine. This is what I have to visualize; a baby that will be healthy and unharmed in the end. The end result is what I’m still dwelling on as my doctor comes in the room at 7 am (she is late). She is telling me it’s “go time” and asks me if I’m ready and even though I couldn’t wait to get out of this room just yesterday I longingly look back at it as I’m being wheeled off to the ultrasound room. As usual, not much information is being provided during the ultrasound. I keep asking if she looks okay, if they can see everything clearly, what the water level is and how about her hands and feet? My doctor tells me that the fluid level is acceptable but still very low (whatever that means) and after that I have to suffer through a very uncomfortable gynecological exam to check my cervix and dilation (still 1-1.5 cm). As I’m being rolled back to my room one last time, the nurse (the Swedish one) preps me for a possible C-section and tells me to pack all the rest of my belongings. Nostalgia comes over me (can you believe it?) washes over me and I feel like I will somehow miss this room, this safe little cocoon of predictability and just waiting. As long as nothing happened, I was safe in this room and there were people watching over me and my baby inside 24/7. I am a person who loves a schedule and routines after all and even though I was bored crazy and sick and tired of being stuck in a hospital alone and scared, there were also times I cherished the peace and quiet and the time to rest, read, write, eat and just be, bonding with the baby in the belly; telling her not to come out yet but stay; stay inside!
I call my husband to come and give him my new room number up on the 5th floor of labor and delivery. “I’m not ready” my insides scream, “we are not ready” but there is no turning back now. Up on the 5th floor, everything is happening very fast. I get an IV put in right away. As usual they have a difficult time finding a good vein but they do better than last time. They pump me full of antibiotics because of the extremely high infection risk which is a huge threat to both me and the baby. The nurses seem efficient and ready to get started. I however, not so much! I know they will stick a pill up inside me to try to thin my cervix and that they will manually try to open me up, doesn’t sound like a lot of fun. As usual against everyone’s advice I have googled this type of induction in the 30-34th week of pregnancy and my conclusion is: pain. My body is not ready for this, this baby is not ready for this, this is not natural and this is not biology, this is medical intervention where they have to trick my body to go into labor. I want to feel more ready, I want to do this, if not for myself then for my baby. Silently I say a little prayer and try to tell myself to believe that is the very best thing after all.