You know what I would not recommend, Internet? Falling down. More specifically, falling down face-first onto cement when you're seven months pregnant. Which is exactly what I did on Monday night. I slipped, I fell, I landed directly on my belly, and I bought myself a 24-hour stay in Labor and Delivery. What can I say, I didn't want to be upstaged by Joel and his visit to the ER.
Thankfully, everything is OK. Sir Fetus seems undaunted (so unperturbed that he didn't move for a full 30 minutes after the fall, which sent me into a panic thinking he was, you know, DEAD.) It seems that I didn't tear any vital internal baby accessories, we stemmed a possible onset of premature labor, and everything is going to be fine as long as Madame Cervix stays at her current 1-2 cm position and the contractions I've been having since the fall keep themselves nice and spread out. I have strict orders to keep myself on a pre-bedrest regimen, avoiding strenous exercise, lifting or carrying anything heavy, and certain, ahem, adult activities (collective sad face from the men in the audience). Oh, and I'm also supposed to stay excessively hydrated for the remainder of the pregnancy and not fall down any more. I didn't tell the doctors just how good I am at falling down (anyone remember this?), afraid they'd strap me into a straitjacket for the next nine weeks.
All joking aside, it was a mildly terrifying and generally un-fun experience. I do not enjoy being in the hospital. I kind of wish I'd more seriously considered a hippie yoga home birth just so I wouldn't have to have an IV in my arm when I give birth (but then again, I really want that epidural, so I guess I'll deal). I don't like "sleeping" in a tiny, uncomfortable bed, with wires all over me and machines beeping and people coming in to do things like "check on me" and "take my blood pressure" and say "oops I thought this room was empty." I really, really do not like not eating for 24 hours. I'm sorry, but 5 liters of IV fluids just doesn't cut it. (Funny thing, though: you know what the nurses brought me when my 24 hours was up and my IV came out? A cold turkey sandwich from the cafeteria. So much for listeria!) Overall, I give the experience one star and would certainly not recommend it to my friends.
The good thing to come out of it, though, is that I feel better equipped to handle labor when it comes. I was terrified when we arrived, but I didn't cry (the closest I came is when Joel left to go home and sleep -- at my insistence -- and I suddenly felt horribly lonely) or totally freak out. The procedures ranged from mildly uncomfortable (wearing monitoring belts around your stomach for 24 hours, "sleeping" in a tiny bed with said belts on) to pretty painful (blown out veins during IV insertion, semi-strong contractions, raging headache) to downright awful (three full pelvic exams and four cervix checks in 24 hours, several performed by a resident who needs some serious work on her technique with a speculum), but I was able to breathe and focus on relaxing the rest of my body and just living through it. Make no mistake, I didn't exactly have a smile on my face and I know labor is going to be much, much harder. But I feel like I can do it now. That's more than I could say a few weeks ago, when we were fresh out of the Childbirth Class of Doom.
But I'd still like to not do it for at least another 8-9 weeks. You hear that, Sir Fetus? Stay in there. And in the meantime, Joel and I will think very seriously about finally getting that crib set up.
When we got a notice in the mail that there'd be a planned power outage for repair work on Sunday from 12-4am, it didn't strike me as a particularly terrible idea. It made sense, I guess, that they'd cut the power overnight while everyone should be happily asleep. We probably wouldn't even notice!
Right on schedule, the power went out at precisely midnight on Saturday night/Sunday morning, causing our burglar alarm to shriek out in protest because BURGLARZ R CUTTIN TEH POWER OMG. Before my heart rate could go back to normal I heard the cool, blessed breeze of the air conditionering slow down and die. Our ceiling fan made a few halfhearted circles before dragging to a halt. The other fan we use for white noise was conspicuously silent. By 12:02 I was covered in a sheen of sweat and muttering the entire trio of unforgivable curses in BGE's direction for not doing this during the goddamn DAY, when people could at least leave the house and go somwehere with air conditioning.
Opening the windows was quickly ruled out because the low overnight was in the high seventies. With humidity, it felt somwhere in the 80s. And to someone seven months pregnant, it felt about five degrees short of molten lava. I packed up my pillows and my book and moved to the couch on the first floor, where it's about ten degrees cooler, and I used my newly acquired booklight to read quite happily. It was cool enough and I had seven different pillows positioned strategically and I wasn't even that upset about being woken up.
That is, until the noise started. The problem with the nice, cool first floor is that it's at street level. The couch is probably ten feet from the sidewalk, and without my beloved fan for white noise I was forced to listen to every drunken conversation, every dog barking, every bird chirping. (Aren't birds supposed to sleep at night? Because our birds CHIRP ALL NIGHT.)
Still, I was OK. I was really tired from being at yoga training all day and I was confident I'd fall asleep quickly despite the guy yelling "what the fuck, man, what the fuck!" right outside the window. I briefly wondered if I should get up and see what was going on, but decided against it because 1) getting off the couch is no easy feat nowadays, and 2) I don't have any maternity pajamas. And it was really hot. So what I'm saying is, I wasn't exactly appropriately attired to be peeking out a window three inches away from a drunk yelling guy. So I gave him a little huff of indignation and continued reading my book.
Then I heard Joel talking on the phone upstairs. While I'd been feeling annoyed at this guy for not keeping his damn voice down while I was busy trying not sweat to death, Joel had looked out the third story window to see him being mugged and beaten unconscious. So! The police and ambulance were called, Joel went outside to help the guy (who had since regained consciousness and was sitting across the street on our neighbor's stoop). After about fifteen minutes the guy insisted he was OK and stumbled off. The police and ambulance finally arrived, Joel showed them where the guy was (unsurprisingly, he hadn't made it very far down the block). The guy declined medical attention and the police and ambulance left. It was all very exciting. I mean that sarcastically, which is how I know it's time to get the hell out of this city. (Also exciting? After all this happened, someone came along and shotgunned two beers and left them in our plant. Party at our house on a Saturday night!)
By this time it was 2:30am. Joel returned upstairs, I retired back to my couch. And then Henry the Cat started howling and running around like a maniac on the second floor. Thanks to the historic 100-year-old wood floors that were such a nice selling point when we bought this house, it sounded like a rabid pack of wild hyenas taking down a zebra instead of an 11-lb house cat batting around his green felt mouse. The power was still off and I imagined that I could actually feel my couch-refuge getting hotter by the second.
Still! I was confident everything was going to be OK! I read some more and eventually passed out around 4am, book in hand... only to be woken up by the beeping of every elecrical appliance in the kitchen and the sweet, sweet sound of the air conditioning sputtering to life two hours later (that would be two hours LATE, BGE, and don't think I didn't notice). I waddled my aching back upstairs and returned to the bed, giving my white noise fan a hug and a kiss on the way.
And then two hours after THAT, the alarm went off saying it was time for me to wake up and go back to yoga teacher training.
It was a bad night of sleep, is what I am saying. And you know what made it worse? Realizing that in 10 more weeks, this is going to be the norm.
Joel and I were invited to a fourth of July BBQ this Saturday. Fun, right? Sure, unless you're me. And you don't really like doing stuff. Or talking to people.
Also, this BBQ is just us and two other couples from my work. I like them both very much, but I don't really like hanging out with work people on the weekends. Because that means I have to wear real clothes and act like a normal person. And I have social anxiety that I normally treat by drinking several alcoholic beverages except I can't drink. Thanks for nothing, baby.
I was sorely tempted to say "sorry, can't make it!" and revel in our long weekend with no plans, no obligations, nowhere to be. But then I realized, hmmm, perhaps this is why I don't have any friends in this city. And I remembered how I got a severe case of The Sads about halfway through Memorial Day weekend when I realized we had done absolutely nothing (this is ridiculous, because I love doing nothing. I never claimed to be rational, and also LAY OFF ME I'M PREGNANT).
I'd be embarassed to tell you how much time I spent thinking about whether we should go to this stupid BBQ or not. Finally, I clicked "respond" on the invitation email, said "We'd love to come! See you there!" and clicked "send" before I had time to think about it. There! We're going! It will be fun! I'll make Pioneer Woman's pesto cream pasta and everything will be great!
And then this morning I got slapped with these fun accessories.
Apparently this is what happens if you have astronomically high cholesterol and mention to your doctor that you've been having intermittent chest pain and heart palpitations. Sure, no problem, I'll wear a heart monitor for 48 hours, I said at yesterday's 29-week appointment. In my head I was envisioning something like the heart rate monitor that Joel uses when working out, a discreet little band that goes around your chest and is easily hidden by a shirt. Instead, I got electrodes from my ribs to my neck, a mess of wires, a sweet little battery pack that you wear around like a shoulder bag, and orders not to shower until Sunday at 11am. It's classy AND sexy and I'm currently praying that we get out of work early for the holiday so I can go home and hide in the house until Sunday morning.
OH WAIT EXCEPT I HAVE TO GO TO A FUCKING BARBEQUE AND MAKE SMALL TALK WHILE LOOKING LIKE WALL-E'S FATTER COUSIN.