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-S
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!"