When my pregnancy was confirmed by my family doctor, she informed me that I had a choice of having an obstetrician or midwife follow my pregnancy. Ultimately, I chose an obstetrician because I felt that God forbid anything went wrong, I would be have access to a hospital an immediate attention and care. Later on, I learned that if I had gone the midwifery route, I would’ve been just as fine so now I know for the next time around ! Any how, I chose to go with a OBGYN who was linked to North York General Hospital because it was close and I know of at least two of my girlfriends who had given birth there and it was a good experience.
As I came down to the end of my third trimester I had expressed more and more anxiety about labour and delivery simply because I have a low tolerance for pain. To be quite frank, I had thought of having a cute baby bump and the adorable munchkin that I would get to hold in my arms after and I didn’t give much thought about how the baby would have to get out of me and into my arms. Needless to say, two of my girlfriends, particularly M and G, would remind me that I need to go for the hospital tour and assured me that if I did, I would feel more confident about the process.
Between Keith’s work schedule and mines, it seemed nearly impossible to schedule a hospital tour that worked for the both of us. At NYGH, the tours are offered only in the evening time and so every week, I would analyze our schedules and try to find the best time for us to go. In the end, I took Anne with me on the Monday evening, a week before I gave birth. The tour was carried out by two lovely volunteers and about five other couples were there as well. For the first 45 minutes, we sat down in a designated room and the tour guides spoke about what we would see and the things we would need to know and afterwards, we went to see labour and delivery ward and the birthing suites. It was also here that I learned that I was responsible for bringing EVERYTHING because the hospital offered nothing. I had read many blog posts and watched YouTube videos where expecting mothers spoke of not needing to take much because everything was provided. As much as I love NYGH, this was not the case for me and by knowing this in advance, I was able to properly prepare.
As we were on the tour, I started to feel very light-headed and uncomfortable. This wasn’t because I felt that the baby was coming, but more so because I couldn’t believe this was actually happening. In my mind, I really didn’t think about what it would take to get the baby out and now my head was swimming with ideas ranging from not pleasant to not very pleasant at all. I knew that my discomfort was evident when the tour guide looked over and asked me, in front of the group, if I was doing alright.
All in all, the hospital tour was very well done and it was worth the $10 I paid for myself and Anne to attend. Oh, and then of course because it’s the hospital, there’s the parking that has to be paid for as well. But, it was worth it. Even though I only heard a very small amount of information, it was worth it.
The best decision I made was taking along someone I knew would pay attention and ask all the right questions because I tuned out once fear kicked in. We were also able to fill Keith in and as M and G said, I did feel more confident about what I would have to do and know where I would have to go when the time came. Keep in mind, my increased confidence did NOT cancel out the overwhelming feeling of fear. Sighs.