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then, and now

As of yesterday I have a drugs from the midwife in the fridge, and a birth pool with assorted accessories + my hospital bag cluttering up the hallway. Although the cats appear to be delighted at this new obstacle course I foresee a lot of tripping and cursing in my future unless I can work out some better place to put them in.

It's all becoming quite real all of a sudden, and it segues into the story of the Hospital Bag the last time I gave birth.

Back in 2007 I treated the Packing Of The Just-In-Case Hospital Bag like a special ops military operation. It basically contained everything I thought I might need - clothes, various leak prevention measures for me and the baby, spare change, chargers, shoes, miniature toiletries, a book to read (hahahahha - optimism), Lucozade, energy bars - the lot. It also had a plastic bag into which I had lovingly packed several pairs of my rattiest knickers.

Then, when I began to get unrelenting-and-exruciating-hip-pain-of-Satan somewhere in the 12th hour of labour - causing me to lose my mind and my ability to communicate in anything except a series of snarls- and unleashing a chain of events that had various people running around trying to locate my hospital notes. I assissted them by growling "in my bag" in a prehistoric language, and glaring at anyone who came near me.

Z (not unnaturally) interpreted my stage directions to indicate that the notes were in my hospital bag (in fact they were lurking in my handbag, as a souvenir of my last antenatal appointment) causing him to attack its contents in the manner of a racoon casing a garbage bin.

Then when my euphoric, afterglowey "wow, I am holding my very own puce and outraged little baby!" waterbirth suddenly turned into PostPartum Haemorrhage, things started moving very fast indeed. I barely had time to pull on a longish t-shirt before the ambulance came, while Z who until the previous 30 seconds had been enjoying Topless-Bonding-Time with our newborn was suddenly handing over the baby to the care of the midwives while he attempted to come to terms with the situation and hastily repack my hospital bag.

Then in between ambulance rides and drips and other excitements, no one thought to double-check the hospital bag contents and I discovered at a crucial time that Z had neglected to replace my bag of ratty knickers.

Although this was only the first in a series of Unpleasant Discoveries (other memorable ones included: Ow Ow Ow It Burns To Pee and My Child Is Loud and Inconsolable), it was also the one in which the NHS was least equipped to help me with. The problem was also compounded by the fact that the only clothes I had to wear was a t-shirt that reached mid-thigh, meaning that I spent the next 12 or so hours walking like a geisha and wrestling with the problem of how to keep maternity towels in place while sending Z SMS messages featuring ever-increasing amounts of !!!a accompanying the words "Bring me pants!"



( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 6th, 2010 11:34 am (UTC)
See, this is one of those things they don't warn you about.

I have to say, from the purely selfish point of view of someone who likes to be prepared and would also like children one day, your posts are incredibly useful.
Jul. 6th, 2010 11:43 am (UTC)
Although Satan's hip pain is not really the normal part of labour, having multiple pairs of pants securely stashed will probably serve you in good stead in many situations.
Jul. 6th, 2010 11:48 am (UTC)
That I can believe.

My mother's obsession is loo roll - she has to have an ample stash at home, plenty in the car and a wodge stuffed up her sleeve at all times.

Usually for me its bread (I get panicky if we run out) but pants would probably be healthier on the whole...
Jul. 6th, 2010 12:48 pm (UTC)
They didn't have any of the extremely sexy, stretchy disposable knickers? I got the joy of wearing those post gynae surgery...always lovely!
Jul. 6th, 2010 02:30 pm (UTC)
Nope, no one offered me disposable pants! Guttered. Slashing of NHS budgets in action there, I guess.
Jul. 6th, 2010 02:54 pm (UTC)
Maybe Leeds PCT is the one to go with then...stretchy "paper" pants a plenty! I was horrified when the nurse said paper pants but they were these wonderful, mesh type things which were stretchy and comfy...highly recommended!
Jul. 6th, 2010 03:48 pm (UTC)
Hip pain of satan *and* PPH? You deserve an easier time this time around.

SSC, I was a bit of a hospital bag refusenik, which annoyed Alex. I would keep coming up with excuses not to pack it.
Jul. 20th, 2010 10:14 am (UTC)
Hip pain of satan *and* PPH? You deserve an easier time this time around.

Thank you. It would be lovely to get a chance to actually stay home after a home birth this time. :)
Jul. 7th, 2010 12:00 am (UTC)
oh dear god, i have to pack a hospital bag. i've been neglecting it. *head desk*
Jul. 20th, 2010 10:13 am (UTC)
I've been thinking of you. Lurking about to cheering for your tenant to be evicted soon. :)

Best of luck.
Jul. 8th, 2010 07:03 am (UTC)
quick wave to say I hope all goes well, and I'll try to be in touch soon...

Aug. 6th, 2010 05:34 pm (UTC)
I read the whole post and enjoyed it enormously but all I can think to say is...

2007? Was it really that long ago?!
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )


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