Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Some Observations On Hospital

It really isn't as bad as I thought it would be.

I am on a ward mainly with women who have just given birth and their babies. But it is oddly quiet, the babies seem very obliging only crying for short periods.

We all have our curtains drawn - round a surprisingly spacious bed area. So my neighbours are nothing but voices, however I do have very vivid mental pictures of them.

To my left is a woman who has just had her sixth - SIXTH! - baby. She gave her date of birth, she is 31. I can't compute how anyone can fit that many babies in such a comparatively short life. She seems totally unphased - as you'd expect.

Opposite, at about 8 am yesterday, the lady started complaining about back pains. Within ten minutes she was screaming and in obvious considerable pain. I heard her tell the doctor this was her first baby, but second pregnancy, the first had been still born at 21 weeks. I sat on my my bed and cried, listening to her.

She came back at 4pm, baby delivered in 45 minutes at 27 (I made a typo before when I said 21 weeks here) weeks, small, but everyone seems happy. Twice I got up to say something to her, but my British reserve sent me back to bed without a word and I've just continued my eavesdropping*.

I have only ever been three places where orange juice is considered a viable starter: 1) The 1970s 2) Formal dinner at Cambridge University 3) Hospital.

The NHS is being slated in the national press at the moment. For lack of care, empathy, poor hygiene. I have experienced the absolute opposite - there has been a fair amount of waiting around - but frankly as a low emergency case I can wait. Everyone I have seen has been lovely, patient, explained everything. I suppose I am saying GO NHS, YOU ROCK!

Saying that, it is pretty boring in here (as two posts in two days signify) so I am very much hoping they let me out today. Forgot to mention yesterday and can't work out how to edit my post on phone - I am now 34 weeks and 6 days pregnant. Ideally they want to wait until I am 37 weeks before they intervene, which as things stand looks quite doable, hopefully I'll go to term - but they have already said they don't want me to go over 40 weeks.


I am now out of hospital - hooray!  As I left I went past the cubical with the Mum who had the 27 week baby and gave her some of my old magazines. They are really pleased with how the baby is doing and the prognosis is good. She's had a rough ride to get here but is in really good spirits and the staff are doing everything for her and her daughter. She even apologised for making so much noise when in labour! (I told her that was a ridiculous thing to say.)


  1. A very evocative description of the hospital experience - the chance encounters, and the empty hours waiting, and that strange helpless hospital feeling you (well, I anyway) get. (I do hope the lady and her baby across the ward are getting on ok. (Did you mean 31 weeks..?)) It's very sobering to think such things are happening every day in every maternity ward.

    Fingers crossed for going to term, W. Not so long now, and signs are good. Onward! And maybe homeward today, with a bit of luck.

    (Also, I agree that orange juice is definitely not food.)

  2. Fingers crosse they let you out soon - hospitals are hot at the best of times, so it must be sweltering there at the mo? I'm guessing you will be on bed rest if they do let you out?

    Hope you're not too bored - now's the time to read all those baby books! Take care of yourself.

  3. I was trying to figure out how far along you were - and I was thinking August was your due date. But, regardless, I feel moderately relieved - 35 weeks is not terrible, although 37 would be better.

    Orange juice (depending on quality, of course) is a delicious treat! I got some by mistake when I was in Labor and Delivery - I was only supposed to get clear liquids, but someone wasn't paying attention. Maybe that's why it's considered food.

    You should overcome that reserve - I'm sure that mom needs lots of support right about now.

  4. I'm assuming you meant 31 weeks for your neighbors baby since you said they were very happy??

  5. Glad the hospital time is ok, if boring. And I hope your neighbor with the small baby will be ok.

  6. Glad to hear you and baby are ok. I know the longer the baby stays in the oven the better, but 35 weeks is not bad at all, hopefully the next 2 weeks fly by.
    Please try to talk to that second time mom, she must to be in need of a few kind words. 21 weeks is not a good outcome.

  7. My jealousy of the NHS is boundless. Sigh!

  8. Good that everything is still ok, and progressing.

    On the Orange juice- that confirms a long held suspicion/paranoia of mine. I am allergic to citrus when dehydrated (me not the fruit) and this goes on my hospital admission forms. EVERY time, the person processing makes a face, asks me what do i mean by that and looks puzzled as to why i would mention it. Should I ever end up a patient of the NHS (not unlikely), i must remember to mention it.

  9. Yay for your freedom; may you stay home and happily pregnant for another several weeks (although in the heat wave, perhaps you'd prefer some respite?). All the best!

  10. I'm glad they treated you well and that you won't be making the Daily Mail headlines. Best of wishes for the next few weeks - and beyond!

  11. Aw I'm glad you talked to her in the end! And I'm glad to hear you're free!

  12. So glad you are out of the hospital and doing well. It is amazing the people you meet in there I met a woman whose water broke at 24 weeks but she didn't give birth till 30 weeks, still in touch with her.

  13. So happy to hear you're out - hope you're resting up at home and taking it easy.

  14. Aw I am just delighted you talked to the woman's ultimately! And i am delighted to listen to you might be totally free! Gold For RS WOW Gold


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