When I get to the hospital (after a weird cab ride where the driver asked if I could give him some extra money because he has four kids and his wife is unable to work…
I mean I felt for him I really did, and I do tip him a lot)
I immediately take the elevator up to labor and delivery. Once there, I am not sure what to say “eh hmm my water may have broken and I’m barely 30 weeks and my doctor eh told me to come here”. The receptionist looks (understandably) confused looking at my belly (which I thought was huge only hours ago, now not big enough). She makes some phone calls and then sends me down to the reception area, I have no idea where I’m going or what I’m supposed to do but another receptionist tells me to sit down so that she can get my information.
She is extremely slow and I feel like I can’t fully answer questions like why I’m there. She gathers a whole bunch of information (why do they need to know where my husband works, my old address, how old my son is and the name of my GP?) while she is telling me that her computer isn’t really working right now “it is so slow and keeps freezing, you know” (hmm, I’m not sure that I do).
In the meantime my sweet mom is texting from Sweden (probably in the middle of the night for her) saying that she is coming.
Since I still believe that this is going to work out, that it is somehow a big mistake and that I will be home soon (preferably the same night, but probably not if this woman with the slow computer has anything to say about it) I text mom that she should hold on, I’m sure things will work out.
She is texting that she is already searching for flights (my poor mom, she just got home from visiting my sister in Ohio and is still jetlagged and now probably sick with worry).
Meanwhile my sister in law is taking care of my son while my husband is getting ready to drive over to the hospital. I feel tired as the receptionists tries to get my fingerprints to work on the scanner thingy for maybe the fourth time (“tricky fingers you have ha ha). After we give up to try my fingers again later (how long is this really going to take) she strongly suggest that I fill out a living will (if I don’t already have one…eh no) and that I give someone the right to decide what to do if something “unexpected happens” and I can’t talk for myself (uplifting). I know this is probably standard but I’m in a very emotional state right now and it all feels very depressing.
After what feels like hours, the receptionist tells me to wait in the waiting room until she finalizes things (what did she do while I was sitting in front of her cubicle forever?).
After what seems like another long wait she comes back up and motions to another pregnant woman and what I assume is her husband to come with us. We are all awkwardly silent in the elevator as it takes us up to the third floor, the perinatal special care unit (I don’t even know what that means).
As the receptionist shows us to our rooms I briefly lock eyes with the other mom to be, I recognize the fear in her eyes and then we open our mouths at the exact same time as we both say “good luck”.
I’m left in this tiny, depressing hospital room with a big green, extremely ugly gown (that I recognize from the birth of my son) with the instructions to undress, to put on the gown (wait do I take my pants off…how about my shirt?) and get comfortable (comfortable really?).
My husband finds me sitting on the edge of the big bed with the ugly bedspread in the big green oddly patterned hospital gown (shirts and panties underneath) sobbing.
I just really don’t like not knowing what is going on. My husband is even more confused, thinking that my water broke in one big gush at my doctor’s office. I have to tell him that, no this is all happening because of the little trickle that I told him about the other night, “when you peed your pants?” he seems even more confused if that is possible.
Two nurses come in the room with clipboards asking my husband to sign something asking him whether he would save me or our unborn baby girl should he have to make that decision. Could this possibly get any more depressing?
He actually looks at me like he wants me to tell him who to choose, hesitates and asks “you, right?” and then quickly just signs and hands one of the Asian nurses the paper when I’m not answering.
The nurse (she seems to be a nurse in training since the other one seems to closely watch everything she is doing) asks me questions (here we go with the hundred questions again) about everything from live births to miscarriages to my last bowel movement (?).
I tell my husband to leave so that he can relieve auntie at home; it’s starting to get late. I no longer hold out hope that I get to go home tonight but I’m still hopeful that I get to go home tomorrow.
I still feel like I’m lost, out of place and that nobody is telling me anything. The nurses are coming back and the one nurse is telling the other one (who suddenly looks even more nervous than before) to start an IV. They tell me to get comfortable on the bed (again, really?) as they take my temperature and check my blood pressure.
The more experienced nurse (I assume) follows the other one’s every move as she nervously (not a good sign) tries to find a vein in my arm. She pokes around with the needle forever until she finally gets it in, only to take it out to try a few more times until the other nurse finally takes over (slightly violently pushing her colleague out of the way with a frustrated sigh).
When the IV is finally in place the nurse tells me that they will monitor me and my baby throughout the night, closely watching heartbeats and contractions. More gooey stuff on my stomach and then I get strapped in with blue and pink bands as I’m told not to move too much.
They both leave me but tell me that they will come in the room every two hours throughout the entire night to check my vitals, change medicine bags and fluids, take my temperature etc.
As I turn off the lights in the little room, the light switch conveniently located on the side of the bed, I feel trapped with my IV in one arm and the blood pressure cuff on the other as well as the bands tightly wrapped around my tummy.
I feel so alone and the one thought that continuously runs through my head until I finally fall asleep in the early morning hours is: how come I’m in the hospital bed in February when my due date is not until May?