Yesterday I slept through my alarm. I had been up a good portion of the night worrying about the baby. I had woken up some time in the wee hours, gotten up to use the restroom, and then upon returning to bed waited to feel the usual kicks from the baby. She usually wakes up any time I do anything, and is usually very active nearly all the time. I’m so used to, when I roll over and cram a pillow under my side, that she’ll start kicking and pushing against it. But nothing happened. My belly was utterly still.. in fact I couldn’t even feel her all crammed up on one side or the other, or sticking out anywhere, or anything. The whole belly was softish and I couldn’t feel a baby in there at all. I poked, prodded, shook the belly, wiggled around, and continued to try to wake her for a really long time before I got a tiny bit of response from her. But it was only a few kicks and that was it. I was worried, but decided that she had in fact moved, so she must be ok, and I had an appointment in the morning so could ask about it then. But of course it was nearly impossible to fall back asleep, and I was hungry to boot, but tried to sleep instead of getting up and eating something. Finally I guess I did fall back asleep.
So after oversleeping my alarm I jumped out of bed, went through the morning routine super fast, threw some clothes on and rushed out the door to my appointment which I was going to be late for.
Once there, after all the normal tests and whatnot they hooked me up to the non-stress test (NST) thing, as always. The OBG had already done the exam and determined that I was not dilating and no progress was being made, and also made the comment (again) about how narrow my pelvis is. She also asked, “didn’t I see something written that we weren’t going to let you go past term?” which I had not heard, but she sent me off to the NST thing while she went and called the doctor at the hospital who had done my ultrasound/bio-screen and had recommended the NST thing in the first place.
Well unfortunately the baby decided not to move while we were hooked up. Despite all the tests always coming back super positive with regards to how healthy the baby and I are, excepting the high fluid levels, this made the OBG worried. I told her about my night, and how I had worried about the baby’s unresponsiveness, and she asked kind of casually, “what are your plans for the rest of the day?” (this at 9 something in the morning). I said “… work..” and she said, “I want you to go to the hospital.”
This shocked me some and she explained that she wanted me to go check into Labor and Delivery, let them monitor me and determine if the baby is ok, etc. She said any number of things could come of that, that I might be induced, scheduled for c-section, sent for another ultrasound bio-screen exam, or they might just send me home. I asked somewhat nervously if I should go home first and get my things and she said, “No, go straight to the hospital. Your husband can meet you there and bring your things.” But in nearly the same breath she told me to go make another appointment with them for Friday, in case I was sent home.
So I shakily checked out, made the Friday appointment, got into the car, and called Eric. And like a good obedient patient, I started driving towards home instead of towards the hospital (which is for the most part on the way). I was so nervous all I could think was that I wanted Eric with me. I asked him, “she told me to go to the hospital but it would be ok if I came home and got you first, right?” and he replied that he would hurry up and get ready. I arrived home about 10 min later and went and grabbed my bag, checked that I had all the things I might want with me, and you know.. started the dishwasher, started picking stuff up.. I also grabbed a granola bar because by then I was starving, having not eaten breakfast in my mad rush out the door.
Meanwhile Eric was running around throwing things in a bag, yelling out, “where’s my wallet?..” and other such things. I went and waited in the car and he came out to get going but forgot something, and he literally had to run back into the house three or four times before we were on our way. It was really kinda cute to see him slightly panicked over us potentially having a baby really soon. Although, we did go off and leave the car seat, but with the hospital not that far away it wouldn’t have been a big deal for him to come home to gather whatever was forgotten, or even have his parents bring it to us.
That time of morning rush hour was over, so it didn’t take very long to get there, and we went up to Labor and Delivery and checked in. The admin lady at the desk took us to the Triage room where I’d be monitored, and gave me a robe and bags for my clothes and a pee cup and all kinds of paperwork, then put her hand on my arm, looked me in the eyes and said, “take a deep breath, it’s all going to be ok.” To which I nervously giggled and tried to do. She propped up the pillows so I could sit and fill out the paperwork, then left us alone, but I had barely started to fill out the first form before a nurse came in and started hooking up their NST device to me (it’s really just straps around my belly that measures contractions and baby’s heartbeat and stuff), along with taking blood pressure and temperature and all kinds of other things. At the same time a resident came in and asked a billion questions, so there was all this mad flurry over me for about 10 minutes, then they disappeared.
Well at that point I was back to reclining and couldn’t sit up because of the stuff on me, so had to try to fill out the paperwork by holding it up and filling it out against my hand. Meanwhile Eric tried to help by adjusting the tray thing but couldn’t get it any closer, and decided to just watch me bemusedly instead.
Then we waited. I sat and stared at the wall thinking about what could be wrong, if the placenta had shut down or the baby was in fetal distress.. what if I had to go get a c-section, what if what if what if.
Somewhere during all this time, the baby decided to kick me a few times. That made me feel better, but I was already nervous about what they were going to do with me.
I have no idea how much time passed. We had conversations about whether there truly was a baby in there, or if it was just cupcakes, and if I was even capable of ever having the baby or if she was going to be stuck inside me for eternity…
Periodically the resident would pop her head in and ask another question, and at some point the admin lady came and collected my paperwork and I apologized for how messy it was to which she sweetly replied that it was no problem at all.
Finally the nurse came back in, started unhooking me from the NST thing and said, “the baby’s beautiful! Everything’s great. I’ll get your discharge papers.”
… So.. that was it? All that fuss and rush and scariness and they basically decided that nothing was wrong and I should just go home?
She bluntly told me, “you don’t want to be induced anyway, it makes it take two days if they have to induce you.” (!! not cool)
By that time I had worked myself up that we would be having the baby today, and in fact I had called my co-worker to tell her all the events of the morning on our way to the hospital, and she had said, “if she’s not moving around anymore you’re having that baby today.” So to just be given the boot from the hospital was somewhat anticlimactic.
It was about noon by the time we checked out so Eric took me out to lunch. It took way longer than I had anticipated, and by the time we got home and I logged into my computer most of the day was over. It was really hard to focus on work at that point, and I had to notify everyone of the events of the morning, and I think they were all a little disappointed that “we” hadn’t had a baby. My boss also sent an email saying it would be ok if I just worked from home for the rest of the week, which I fully intend to do (after coming in today for one last time to ensure I finished up some things I want to finish).
So yeah. I think people were disappointed to see me in the office today. Although I must say, I really enjoy people’s reactions when they ask, “when are you due?” and I reply, “this past Sunday.”
Oh! And to make things even more awesome, the whole way home from the hospital, all yesterday evening and last night, and all this morning, guess who can’t sit still again and has resumed using me as a punching bag?