September 22, 2013
It’s been one week since I was discharged from the hospital with nothing to hold but an empty receiving blanket.
Theresa, the midwife who was on the Saturday day shift, was hoping to discharge me on Saturday. My blood pressure couldn’t decide what it was going to do. It was normal. Then the diastolic was high. Then the diastolic came back down, but the systolic was high. Then it was all high. Then it was all normal. Then the diastolic went back up. Basically, it was all over the place. And while we were all chalking it up to stress (gee, I wonder where that might have come from?), the obstetrician on duty wanted some blood work run to rule out pre-eclampsia before I was discharged. (Did you know you could pre-eclampsia post-partum? Neither did I.) Those panels came back normal, but my CBC showed an elevated white cell count, so they decided I should stay at least one more night to rule out infection. Theresa was very apologetic, but none of us wanted to deal with a readmission if they missed something. But whatever caused an elevation in my white blood cell count, it was back to normal when a second CBC was run Sunday morning.
Tonya was my day nurse the entire time I was in the hospital. There was no way she was going to let some orderly wheel me out to the car. I didn’t start crying until we reached the elevator. But it was a Sunday, so the atrium was about as quiet as it can get during the day. It was just starting to rain.
I’ve determined that hospitals are liminal spaces. They are neither here nor there. Or as my mother put it, they are a world unto themselves. And while I knew I was never going to hold my Sofia again, as long as I was still there, it was easier to pretend that this was all just a bad dream. But it isn’t. It doesn’t matter how long I wait for it to end. It never will. I’m already awake.