Thursday, 11 October 2012

Down to earth with a bump (19) - A labour of love (4)

Surprisingly I slept well and surprisingly I was a picture of calm in the morning. We got in the car and made the drive back to the hospital. I began to feel sick on the way and by the time we arrived, Simon told me I looked white, completely drained. Nice.

As we went up in the lift I thought I was going to throw up. We walked through the doors on to the labour ward and the first person I saw was one of my community midwives, I was so relieved. I summoned my voice and said hello, telling her I was so pleased to see her on shift. To my dismay she told me she had just finished an extraordinarily long night and was soon to be on her way home. “Oh,” the relief left me in an instant. “I’m here to be induced at 8’o’clock.” “Oh no you’re not,” she smiled, "there are no beds available.”

Simon said it was as if someone had just brushed over my face with pink paint. For in that moment, all the colour came flooding back in to my cheeks. “Oh that is good news,” I grinned. She smiled. “You will have to sit in the waiting room with a few others until a bed comes available. Sorry.”

Simon then put his two pennies in, saying: “I think you should know Emma’s membranes ruptured a week ago.” Calmly she replied, “Right, then you jump the queue and go ahead of the woman whose waters broke three days ago.”

Bizarrely, I felt like we had won a prize in a raffle at that point. We walked to the waiting room and glanced through the door. A few others? It was packed. All you could see were bumps and legs everywhere. A number of anxious faces glanced back.

I couldn’t do it; it would have turned me in to a complete fruit loop waiting in there with nothing but silence to keep us company, besides there was nowhere to sit. We arranged with someone on the desk that we would be waiting somewhere within the hospital grounds and gave them our mobile number. We promised we would not go home, but be there for when we were called. When would that be? They couldn’t be sure.

Four hours later we were sat in the car listening to music in the car park. It was all a bit surreal. Waiting. Here even at the hospital, just waiting. My baby hardly kicked at all. It too, seemed to know it was waiting. Waiting for the final hurdle. And then the phone rang. And this time I was ready. I was calm. All was good. Nothing had changed, but time had elapsed and I was now prepared.

I sat on the bed and the new midwife introduced herself. She was called Penny, and she was brilliant. I knew it would be ok. She tuned me in to the monitor and put a cannula in to my wrist. There was no doubt about it, this time I was ready.