Saturday, September 17, 2011

Dress Rehearsal

Yesterday about 3pm, I started to get sharp pains running up my abdomen into my lungs and chest.  They were pretty severe, but lasted a short time and came sporadically.  They did not feel like contractions at all (at least not like Braxton Hicks or the few "real" contractions I've had in the past).  Two hours later, when they were still happening, Ryan suggested I call the doctor's office just to see what they say. 

I called and, of course, began with the words, "I am pretty sure I'm not in labor but...".  I would say these words several times as the night went on.  I explained what was happening and it confused her.  There was no doctor there for her to talk with and in the end, she told me I should go to Labor and Delivery to just make sure everything was okay with Katelyn.

Well, great.  She had to say it like that.  I hemmed and hawed (one of my grandma sayings...) for a good half hour after that.  I *knew* I wasn't in labor and going there seemed like a total waste.  But she told me it was to make sure everything was okay with Katelyn.  How do I ignore that???  What if I do, and something is wrong.  Would I ever forgive myself?

So Ryan and I decided to go.  I didn't even bring my overnight bag (or finish packing it for that matter).  That was how sure I was that this was not "it".  I felt so embarrassed even walking the halls and registering, putting on a hospital bracelet, going up to triage.  I knew that embarrassment was nothing compared to the embarrassment I would feel when I had to walk back to the car because nothing was going on.

When we got to triage, I decided that I was here now, so let's make the best of it.  Ryan and I said let's call it our dress rehearsal!  I was getting the chance (under protest) to see it all before the big day, so that was nice.  The hospital was not busy, so I didn't feel stressed or like I was talking up someone's place who actually needed it.  My nurse was a sweet gal from England who didn't make me feel dumb at all for being there when I obviously didn't need to be.

I changed into their hospital gown and Ryan quickly understood why I bought my own hospital gown for the actual "big day".  He had decided to document this experience and got a nice picture of my butt peaking out the back.  I won't put that one on here (obviously), but here I am all hooked up in triage.  Someone this relaxed and happy is obviously not in labor...

But the girl next to me was.  She was breathing hard and heavy.  I think it made Ryan nervous.  He said it sounded like there was an animal in there!  I told him he is getting a sneak peek of things to come...

I stayed on the monitors for a while and it turns out I was having minor contractions every 2-4 minutes.  I hardly noticed them, except for a few stronger ones (and I use the term "stronger" very loosely - these are nothing!).  I hadn't felt the severe cramping / pulling once since I got to the hospital (of course, isn't that always how it is?), so we couldn't see what that looked like on the monitor.  The reason I came, Katelyn, was under protest with the monitors strapped to my belly.  She moved constantly, changing her heart rate from 115 to 160 and back down again.  I guess all three of us thought this hospital trip was a little ridiculous!

Finally, the nurse checked me.  Which, by the way, holy cow!  She is no Dr. M!  When he checked me, I hardly felt anything.  After her check, I felt like she knew everything about me in the matter of 30 seconds.  Yikes!  But sure enough, not dilated, not thinned out, and my cervix is still a bit posterior.  Katelyn's head is very low though, so that's a good sign!

So, that was it!  I got dressed and we left, with our tail between our legs.  Okay, so not really.  I went because my doctor's office told me to and, all in all, I am glad I did.  I got to see how it all will happen when the "real deal" comes along.  And we had fun!  Which is more than I can say for our next visit to triage...


Tami said...

Glad it was nothing! After my experience with L&D and I starting to think along the same lines as you, getting my own gown! There's did not even fit, and I'm not even as big as I will be on the big day! So where did you get yours??

RMCarter said...

I bought this one:

There are cuter / more expensive ones out there though. :) I went low-cost, because I imagine it will never be worn again! It fits great and there are snaps up the back which leave you feeling a lot less exposed.

If you (or someone you know) can sew, there are a ton of hospital gown sewing patterns online. Then you can really customize it.

Sarah said...

Well Im glad you and the baby are ok :)

Anna M said...

I had to laugh about the breathing part. Ben was in and out of consciousness when labor hit hard with Mark and several times he woke startled wondering why I was breathing so heavy.
P.S. Bring your own wipes for Katelyn the hospital only had the ones you wet with water and not so soft.

Dani said...

You will be so glad you have your own gown! I brought my own too and I was sent to walk the halls for an hour after I had been admitted and it was nice to have a little more coverage. I also took a swimsuit skirt (one I didn't mind getting dirty) and put that on underneath. It's funny to me now that I was that concerned with my modesty but I think I'll be the same way if I get to birth another baby someday!