I have already written of our overnight stint in the hospital on St. Patrick's Day, thinking that I would be giving birth to Natalie within a couple of days due to dropping levels of amniotic fluid. It turned out to be a false alarm, and I was sent home with the reassuring news that everything was now fine.
Friday evening (Mar. 27) was false alarm #2.
I didn't feel well in general when I woke up Friday morning. My stomach had started hurting during the night, and I didn't sleep well. I woke up with some severe gastro-intestinal distress. Yuck.
But we were meeting my parents for lunch, so I got Sarah ready. We enjoyed lunch, but I continued to feel rotten as the day wore on. And soon after we were back at home and I had put Sarah down for a nap, the pain started.
It was down low, in my pelvic floor region, but it caused my whole body to tense. It didn't last for long at a time, but it came at regular intervals. First ten minutes. Then eight. Then seven. Then five. Intensity varied. Timing stayed consistent. By the time Nelson got home, I was in pain every four minutes. I tried to call my doctor, but I couldn't get through. Nelson said forget it; we were going to the hospital.
At the hospital, I was hooked up to a monitor. I also needed to have an internal exam. Labor is defined only by changes to the cervix. I could have contractions all I wanted, but if my cervix didn't change, I wasn't in labor.
As it turns out, 2 out of 3 hospital nurses can't even find my cervix. That's right, it took three attempts to even get a starting point. But they assured me that any change at all would indicate labor and the doctor on duty would perform my c-section that night. Again, my doctor was not there. (Sigh.)
Well, I stayed in bed with the pain for the hour, the third nurse (the one who had been successful) came back to do another exam. She declared that I was not in labor. Further, my "contractions" weren't registering on the machine anyway. And the area where I indicated I was hurting was too low. She said I was experiencing ligament pain, and that I should go home and take Tylenol and rest. I said, "Ligament pain? At regular intervals?!" Yes, she insisted. So home we went. Once again, we thought I was having this baby, and it turned out I wasn't. I could only hope Tylenol could help, because I was really miserable.
To be continued....