Sunday afternoons J and I typically have a small group of friends over at our place for a game night. Last week we cancelled because it was the baby’s due date and it seemed foolish to make plans that we might not be able to keep. This week we just went ahead and invited people over anyway, because the baby has been taking his time and we are tired of not being able to do things.
The gaming afternoon went well, although I began to feel a little uncomfortable as evening set in. People stayed late and chatted, because nobody had to work Memorial Day Monday. Midnight became 1 a.m., and I continued to feel… off. I felt like I do when I’m experiencing my menstrual period. My abdomen and lower back were achy, and my system was trying to clear itself out. I slipped off inconspicuously to the bathroom… and discovered that I was bleeding.
By 3:30 a.m., J and I were at the hospital and I was sitting on a bed with two straps wrapped around my abdomen for a NST (Non Stress Test). On a monitor nearby was one chart measuring the baby’s heart rate, and a second chart that measured my contractions. Sure enough, after weeks of wondering whether I would be able to recognize a contraction when I felt it, I could! They weren’t very strong, and they were spaced about 7-10 minutes apart at the beginning. J sat by me on a chair and we waited as the monitor recorded more data. A nurse came in and talked to us about ‘bloody show,’ which is what I had been experiencing, and checked my cervix, which was still about 3 cm dilated. Then a doctor from my clinic (not Dr. K; she is out of town until Tuesday) came in and talked to us some more. He was called away by his phone, and J and I were left to wait. We both dozed off where we sat. The monitor, when I opened my eyes and looked at it, didn’t seem to be showing contractions anymore.
Sometime after 5:00 a.m. J and I were sent home from the hospital and told to come back in when contractions become stronger and more regular. The first light of morning was just beginning to brighten the horizon as we stepped out into the parking lot, and both of us were yawning. Once home, we let Ziggy out to pee and fell into bed for a few more hours.
This morning — I say morning, but now it actually feels like it’s Monday, as opposed to Sunday night — the contractions have come back again. They’re stronger now when I feel them, but still not frequent enough to warrant a trip back to the hospital. I’ve been carrying around a little sheet of paper with me and am wearing a wristwatch so I can write down the starting time of each uncomfortable twinge.
The baby isn’t here yet, but maybe he’s getting ready to come.