So we finally did it last night.
After months of contractions that equated to the level of intensity that my “real” contractions were with Ali but NOT calling in for fear of making The Dreaded and Shameful Fake Labor Hospital Trip, and after an especially intense day and evening with contractions starting at 1:30pm and then feeling like I was having one, huge, 2 hour contraction that night. I finally called the on-call doctor last night – just to find out what I needed to watch out for, but he chilled me to the bone with fear and instead, suggested I come in.
An overnight stay in Labor and Delivery later, I have nothing to show for it but a severely impacted conscious state and an incredible soreness from zillions of contractions, but we DID learn a few valuable lessons for when the REAL thing really happens.
And, since I like to focus on the positive (and be oh-so-helpful to all of you), here’s what we learned.
1. Our kid is MORE than obliging – nay, excited even – to be gotten out of bed at 11pm, have the “bizarre” experience of wearing shoes with her Jammies, and having Gramamma and Pop come pick her up. Biggest. Treat. Ever. Who needs a new baby brother to get excited about when you get THAT sort of fun?!
2. What used to be “Daddy Parking” right outside Labor and Delivery four years ago is now Physician-only parking.
3. However, the best parking spot in the parking deck is available at 11:30pm on a Saturday night.
4. But, almost all hospital crosswalks and entrances are closed at 11:30pm on a Saturday night, making it the absolute WORST parking spot on the whole complex.
5. Chris learned, on that search for the one unlocked door in the freezing rain, that he needs to pack a rolling suitcase, not a heavy duffel bag, for our hospital stay.
6. When your husband doesn’t show back up to your labor and delivery room for 30 minutes after going to park the car, it’s not because he’s sipping on a Pumpkin Spice Latte at the hospital Starbucks while you only get ice chips. Because they’re not open anyway on the weekends. He’s just trying to find that one elusive unlocked door.
7. When you call the on-call doc at 10pm on a Saturday night and he says “Swing by Labor and Delivery and let the girls check you”, that COULD end up meaning, “Go to Labor and Delivery, and if you’re having regular contractions, I’ll tell them to keep you until morning when I’ll come check on you.”
8. Having serious contractions 2-3 minutes apart ALL. NIGHT. LONG. does not guarantee that any labor progress is being made.
9. Being told that said contractions aren’t making any progress at 4:30 in the morning AND that the on-call doctor will probably send you home in the morning may be productive – but only in your tear ducts.
10. Two monitors attached with oversized, overtight rubber bands WHILE having contractions all night long are not conducive to much rest or relaxation.
11. A seriously larger-than-needed shot of Demerol and Phenergan, when given in the middle of the night when you’re only sleeping between contractions 2-3 minutes apart anyway, will completely take away your ability to control your own consciousness the next day.
12. When they say they’re bringing you breakfast before you leave (kind of like a farewell gift on a sadistic game show), don’t get excited. Unsalted, unbuttered Cream of Wheat and Red Jello Blocks, even when you see how unbelievably low-cal and healthy they are on their detailed nutritional receipt, will not appeal to your nauseous, exhausted tummy. Just save those calories till your husband takes you out to eat after leaving.
So there you have it. Everything you need to know about Labor and Delivery, without having to experience the overnight stay to learn it all for yourself! I just feel so helpful and enriching to your life right now.
…but now it looks like I’m losing consciousness for the tenth time today….
Keyboards make such awesome pillows.