Hospital Visits and Facing Nerves

We walked in to Virginia Hospital Center last night with the other four couples. The men held notepads while their wives held their ever-growing stomach, all with one thing in mind. Touring the hospital’s maternity ward.

Most of them were new parents eager to see for the first time what would soon be their delivery room options.  Anderson and I were not new. This is not the first time we have done this, which of course led to the question, why are you touring the facility? It is not like we haven’t been in the position. Or even the hospital before.

But of course what they don’t know is that this was not the same hospital where we delivered our first. Nor is it the same situation. We had planned on a local hospital, closer to our house but when we found out that we were bumped up to high risk, it was suggested that we deliver here instead.  Add to that, the fact that back in 2011 I had two major surgeries at VHC, it seems like a no brainer.

It was an odd feeling walking through the ward, listening to the couples talk about options, about how to deal with car seats and things. Already nervous for the big day, whenever that day comes, for most it is still a wide-open and somewhat scary unknown.

Then there was Andy and I. Who do not necessarily know the exact date, but have already been told we wouldn’t make it to 40 weeks. We already know that the chances of inducing are pretty great. I wonder if this is how it feels for those that have c-sections. It is an odd feeling knowing that I won’t be mad dashing to the hospital in the middle of Super Bowl like I did with my son, trying to stay calm. It is an odd feeling to even think I will simply walk in to the hospital, get hooked up and have the process begin.

You would think this would somehow make me less nervous. Yet I am not. I am nervous. I am just as nervous as the first time, even more so perhaps. As first time parents you don’t fully know what to expect. Sure you can take classes, but it isn’t the same, not really. Nothing prepares you for it. As first time parents you aren’t prepared for it, the pain, the time it often takes, the exhaustion that follows. I thought I would be with the second. I thought oh I would totally be ok.

But they throw curve balls at you. The baby doesn’t grow as much or as fast as they want her to. You don’t expect to have two appointments a week to be monitored, sitting for each an hour at a time. You don’t expect to hear that you may not make it to 40 weeks and you don’t expect to hear we will just take things one week at a time.

No I am not any less nervous than I was when I was expecting Logan. I thought I would be. But I am not. I thought I would be more prepared. But i am not.

Never the less I smiled and walked through the maternity ward as if nothing was on my mind. I beamed at the new parents all the while looking around. I liked the hospital, even if it is a bit farther away. I liked the staff and the rooms and the care that goes in to both the mom and the baby. I focused on that.

Because everything will be all right, and my nerves will soon take a back seat to joy.

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