Monday, March 14, 2011

What is Antepartum Anyway?

After being wheeled through what seemed like the entire hospital on a gurney, I was in a labor and delivery room at St. Francis Hospital in Peoria because they had the recourse's to be able to take care of a tiny baby born too soon. I was way out of it by this time...but I remembered to ask for my "Life Flight" t-shirt and proudly wear it today! I saw many doctors, nurses and residents. Everyone seemed sure that the baby was going to come soon. I was so tired and not feeling well from all the meds they were giving me in hopes to stop labor. I couldn't watch TV because the motion and light made me sick. I had to lay on my left side and was not able to get out of bed or sit up at all! Yep, that means no showers and a bed pan! Matt arrived, but it seemed like it took him forever to get there. We were still scared. But here we were, sitting in a delivery room, hubby on a very uncomfortable cot next to me, camera in hand just in case.

So there we sat for three days, and no baby. I was able to once again ward off labor and keep our little bundle of joy in to get stronger. But, I was being transferred to a part of the hospital called antepartum. What is antepartum? Well, it's the place where all mommies in pre-term labor go to be monitored and given anti-labor meds until they are well enough to go home on bed rest, or they hit 36 weeks, or they deliver their babies.

There I was, in what seemed like pregnant lady jail. The room was very small and old and the TV was tiny. The bed was uncomfortable and I had no comtrol over the AC. Now I could shower once a day and get out of bed to use the bathroom...freedom! The only people I had contact with besides the nurses were ocassional visitors, FB friends and phone calls. But thank God I did have a private room so Matt could come and stay with me on the weekends.

I think I was there about eleven days or so...but that was a long 11 days! It was lonely and some of the meds that I was on made me feel spacey and groggy, so I didn't do much besides watch TV. Poor Matt had to watch his beloved Blackhawk's win the Stanley Cup on the tiny TV in my hospital room. We spent the 4th of July in the hospital, our favorite holiday. They let us out of our rooms to a large windowed area where we could watch the fireworks. We couldn't see them very well, but it was SO nice to be out of that room, and I really didn't want to go back!
4th of July, almost 30 weeks
Out of my room and ready for some fireworks! Excuse the bad hair. Couldn't stand long enough to blow it dry!
Matt choosing a movie for us to watch. 

I was still being monitored, occasionally having contractions, switched meds that I had to wake up twice in the middle of the night to take, and counting down the days until I got to 36 weeks.

On July 6th, my doctor checked my and said everything was shaping up! I went back to being dilated to a 1, my cervix was thickening and my water bag was no longer bulging, and my contractions were settling down. This meant I could GO HOME!

There truly is no place like home! Matt was so nervous to take me home. He made me recline in the car as far as I could and slowed down over every bump. I was now on only one anit-labor medicine and I was actually feeling pretty good. I was so excited to go home and shower and sleep in my bed, next to my did I miss him!

Things I remember from Antepartum...

  • Chocolate shakes from the Spotted Cow
  • My sister visiting and bringing lunch and giving me a pedicure...I owe her!
  • Everyone commenting on my pedicure
  • Feeling very alone
  • Not wanting visitors to leave
  • Ambien, Prevacid, and Zofran
  • Sending Matt to find fruit and melting Baskin Robins 
  • Visits from the Main family and their kiddo making me laugh
  • Staring at the calendar that was at the foot of my bed
  • Wearing my new maternity clothes that I ordered from the Internet
  • Finishing my baby registry on-line
  • Warning TMI: Being told not to push to have a bowel movement!
  • Getting my IV out of my hand!
  • Canceling all of our summer plans...camping, concerts and the cabin
  • Visits from my family and my dad falling asleep
  • Watching LOST on Netflix
  • The "Craft Cart"
  • Every nurse swearing that I was having a boy and me saying no way, it's a girl!
  • Having a super long ultrasound and knowing that baby was still fine
  • Referring to baby as "Sweet Baby Shinnick"
Dorothy really has it right when she said "There's no place like home"!


  1. This brought back so many memories! My room looked at a brick wall:( I used to get chai tea from the spotted cow.

  2. Erin, I'm enjoying reading about your little man and all of your experiences these past 8 months. I remember when you went into pre-term labor. I was pregnant as well and due around the same time-9/30. I can remember having a pit in my stomach at the thought of delivering my baby at that time and praying so so so hard for you and him/her. And then I remember reading his stats when he was born and feeling a big relief that he was soo big for being so early! I'm so sorry for everything that he and you and Matt had to go through, but the most important part is that he is home-happy and healthy-with you! I'll be keeping tabs on him. What a cutie!