Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Birth Story Part 7b- Arriving at the Hospital

I left off looking down the road and seeing red lights, hoping that my fear of having the baby in the car wasn't going to be realized. I had about two contractions in the car, and then they eased off. I didn't really notice not having contractions. I did think, as we passed the shell of the former hospital*, we could be there by now. Then, a few blocks later we passed a fire station, and in my mind this was an anchoring point, like a new point to which we could return in case things started to get worse. But we kept progressing through town. The student section, of which I was afraid of being clogged, was wide open as it was a Sunday morning. We made it through construction, and then through a very long driveway leading up to the emergency room. I remember seeing a couple on a tandem bike riding through the parking lot as we approached, strange and cool simultaneously. At this point my husband, clearly tense, says "Why do they have to put the emergency room on the back side of the hospital?" and I managed to spurt out, "Don't bitch, just drive!".

Hospital contraction # 1

We arrived at the emergency room entrance and Hub said, "I'll drop you off, and go park the car. I'll be right there" I stood up from the car, after no contractions for about 15 minutes and was SLAMMED by another contraction. The car had slipped away from behind me and I forced myself to put one foot in front of the other through the double door to the ED. I was greeted by a triage nurse (I assume) and he said "What can we do for you today?" which I thought was a pretty dumb question. I managed to grunt "Having."..."Baby". He said, "Would you like a wheelchair?" At which point I'm thinking, well no duh, but managed to nod in the affirmative. The chair was a big relief, but the contraction was still going on. He rolled me up to the admit desk and said "we've got someone for OB and she's in a lot of pain, can I just take her up now?" at which point the admissions person said, "No She can't go upstairs without a bracelet" Yikes, I think. And then the contraction was over.

* The only hospital in town (a community hospital) was recently moved from a central location in the "city" (10 minutes away) to the very outskirts of town (20 minutes away) this is a sore spot for me due to the sprawling development and regressive city planning that goes on here...


  1. Were you at all concerned with your tone/actions to other people during this? I guilt myself over any little mean word I say to my husband, and I'm afraid after the way I *know* I'll be when I ever give birth, I'll feel so awful. Do the rules go out the window and we get a free pass?

  2. i'm on the edge of my seat! how does it turn out :)

  3. R.B. My entire goals for my first labor was to be polite to the people in the room, and to go without medication (seem like opposing goals). I made the first one and nearly made the second.

    For this one you'll have to wait and see... The tone with my husband was sharp, but not yelling. I didn't think to feel bad about it. I still don't think I was rude or mean, just urgent in my request that he concentrate on driving and chill. :)

    Everyone who works with laboring women knows that there is a specific stage in labor (called transition) near the end that is emotionally charged. Some women cry, some women want to give up, some become angry, etc. The staff all know this and are well prepared to deal with it, as is a good doula, who can help you through the emotional part. I was probably in transition at that point.

    Transition was made famous in the 80s by Bill Cosby's Himself when he quotes the Mom in labor as turning to him and saying "YOU DID THIS TO ME!!!"

  4. I don't know why I had to ask about that, as I hope that being polite is the least of a woman's worries in that situation.

    I think I've seen that Cosby bit-- quite excellent.