A routine weekly visit to our obstetrician today went awry and now Nat's in hospital, I'm at home, and we're back to waiting again. So we packed off to see our doctor for a routine weekly visit. No drama, we were even early! Another couple sat in the waiting room with us, waiting (as you seem to do in those places). Anyway they were expecting their third, us our first, so we chatted. We even boasted a little that Nat's pregnancy had been "text book" so far, with a week and half to go. Then Nat's name was called and we said cheerio to our new friends.
We get into the doctor's office, and go over Nat's recent history...nothing startling there. "Text book" remember? He does his doctor thing (to save Nat any embarrassment, I'll leave the details out) and then sits us down. Basically he's worried. VERY worried. Nat's blood pressure is through the roof, there's signs of serious renal dysfunction and he wants that baby out ASAP.
I'm thinking at this point, he'll book a cesarian section some time in the next few days. Nope. The next thing he says is "I'm calling the hospital and will be inducing you tonight" - it's already about 5pm! He tells the hospital we'll be there in an hour and sends Nat off for blood tests. The next thing he says is "Natalie, I wish I could say this another way, but you are very sick, and this could affect your baby". At this point I didn't know if I wanted to vomit, cry or feint. I just WASN'T expecting it!
From the time of "boasting" about Nat's "text book" pregnancy to being told your wife is seriously ill (and possibly your unborn child) to now, is all of about 5 minutes! Well, I'm proud to say I didn't vomit, cry or feint, instead I peppered the good doctor with every question that was going through my head. He answered them all (to his credit) and was really quite calm. Calm in a way that instils confidence. The sort of calm pilot's exude when under pressure and have to tell the passengers some bad news; you know the proverbial has just hit the rotating blades, but you know you're in good hands too.
Well the next 2 hours were a blur. We raced down to the pathology lab. Then raced home, called everyone, grabbed the bags, prayed, and headed back to the hospital. When we arrived, we were expecting Nat to be in labour in the not too distant future, maybe an hour or so. Instead we were told that they were fully booked for "induced labours" and unless Nat or our baby were in real, immediate danger, they were going to wait and see. Fair enough. We waited for the blood results to come back...and waited, and waited....you get the idea. It wasn't all bad.
Nat was hooked up to a fetal monitor and we got to see the baby's heart beat get plotted on a length of paper, and listen to it at the same time. It was strangely comforting hearing that little heart patter away at about 140 beats per minute. Anyway, about 45 minutes after arriving at the hospital the blood results came through: things weren't as bad as they looked, but still far too serious to send Nat home. No induced labour tonight (...yet - the night is young, it's only midnight!). They've admitted Nat for the night and are planning to induce her tomorrow morning at 6am. So I'll be there a bit before that. Our doctor will apparently be in around 7-7:30am to check on Nat and speed things up a little if needed. So until then, we wait.
While waiting, I just sat in Nat's room and we watched a little TV together, talked, watched the fetal monitor's little squiggly line. The usual stuff (apparently). We asked the nurses a few questions about the logisitics of the hospital stay; what we need to bring for the baby, for Nat. We figured seeing as I had to go home anyway, we may as well check to see if I should bring anything extra with me in the morning when I return. We have a bag for the delivery (older clothes and stuff that can get messy and stained if necessary) and another bag for Nat and the baby's stay after the delivery - but we figured, we may as well check. Would you belive a private hospital requires you to bring your own nappies?! Well Figtree Private does! They supply your baby with clothes, blankets etc, but no nappy! How cheap is that?! So I've bunged a packet of 50 new-born nappies in the boot, ready for the morning. Time flew and before I wanted to, or was ready to, the nurses told me wind things up, and told Nat to get into bed.
So like a some sort of stinking boarding school, all the dads are evicted at 11pm and told to get some rest. Yeah right! I can't sleep so I thought I'd scratch out some news and see if I feel sleepier at the end....it's not working yet.
Tomorrow is "D" day; delivery day. So tomorrow I'll be a dad. Tomorrow I'll get to meet, face to face, my first child. Wow!! It's exciting but nerve wracking too. I just think about what Nat is going to go through and I start to feel sick. There's nothing I can do about it, she's gonna hurt, and I'll just have to watch - I'm not looking forward to that. I can't stand seeing Nat sore from arthritis when there's nothing I can do, this is going to be several orders of magnitude worse for both of us!
Well I can't think of anything else to write at the moment, so I'll sign off here and probably scratch out some more tomorrow night when they evict me at 11pm again! Grrrr.