Last night we toured labor & delivery and then recovery. Because we are having a baby. Next month. US. How did that go by so fast?
We checked in at the information desk and before I even got there, the nicest woman said, "Here for the maternity tour?" She handed me a fistful of pamphlets (that I put in to my pamphlet binder at home) and a pre-registration for the hospital admittance so we can go straight to L&D when the big day comes. The big day?! Anxious/nervous/excited. That's how I feel.
Along with 6 other couples, we headed up to the 3rd floor. The tour guide asked everyone when they were due and if they were having a boy or a girl. Everyone answered and out of the group, we were the only "surprise" baby. Everyone else knew. I loved that.
On our way down the hall, some woman (girl, lady, person!) came rushing by me with her person (partner, husband, man-friend, daddy!?) in a hurry. She looked like she was in pain, was sweaty, breathing rapidly and a bit panicked. Our cheery tour guide said, "Here for the tou....OH! Right this way," and quickly we all realized what was happening. "Good example!" our tour guide said. "When you are in labor, you come up here...right this way everyone!"
I wanted to make a joke (nice plant!) but I didn't. I just thought it. But seeing the look on that woman's face really was quite impactful. However, the fact that she was walking and not in a wheelchair made me feel better. I wondered, Did she take the class? Did she take the tour? Is she having a girl or a boy? How long will she be in labor? Why don't they have any bags? Did they drive here? Will they drive home? Do they have the carseat in? How long have they been driving around with the carseat in?
Next, we went into the room where you actually deliver your baby. It was a large room with lots of hookups for medical stuff. There was a bathroom (which I went into and inspected), a bed, and a little bassinet thing with other medical devices that will hold the baby right after it shoots out of your body. I had so many questions. I asked some of them but honestly, I was the only one asking questions. So then my other thoughts were - am I the only one with questions? Am I the oldest one here? Am I also the stupidest person here? Or perhaps the person that reads too much? Craziest? Most spazzy? Why is no one saying anything? I felt better that I could see a thermostat in that room so to me, that meant that I had direct control over the temperature in the room. Phew.
Onto the recovery room. Just like that. I mean, we were in the labor room for about 4 minutes (and only because I was asking crap like "what year was the hospital built" along the way, just for banter). The recovery room has a bed, a restroom and a lounge chair for dad. The double rooms are bigger. You may have to share (GASP!) with another family, but hopefully not per our tour guide. You can order off the menu (I abstained from asking to look at the menu) at any time up until 6:30pm. Visiting hours are 10am-8:30pm but they are not strict about that. Questions I had - are you hooked up to an IV the whole time? Do you actually sleep? Can the baby stay with you in that room? Does the nurse help you go to the bathroom? What if you have questions? Does the doctor come and visit you? Is there wifi? What if you don't want visitors at a certain time? Crickets. No one had any questions! Maybe the menu is online...
Then we went down to the nursery. There was one tiny 2 day old baby in there. Our tour guide went in and showed us the bracelets they tag the baby with and explained that only the mom and dad can come and get the baby - plus the baby has a bracelet on it with a security tag. I said, oh, like Lindsay Lohan, and everyone laughed. Which was when I realized I had said that out loud. I almost felt bad for our tour guide because she said more than one, BOY you guys are a quite crowd. I wished with all my might that I had a private tour at that time. She would NOT think we were a quiet crowd if I had brought my family. Good lord! My nursery questions -I always thought there were rows and rows of babies in here? Where are all the babies? Do they get foot and hand printed here? How do babies sleep when everyone is prodding at them? How will I know when to feed my baby? Do I tell you or do you tell me? Are these normal questions?
Finally, our tour was complete. The guide thanked us all and wished us luck. She turned to me and remarked that I looked familiar. We figured out that she and her husband are Cantina regulars! Too funny. Gotta love Toledo. Now let's just hope she was not annoyed with all my questions!! Thank you Sherry! You were a great tour guide and I feel better having been through the hospital!