The NO Sleep Solution: Nurses, Sirens, Delivery Trucks and Cleaning Ladies
Everyone knows that sleep is important. If I don’t get a good night sleep, I am a total grumpy witch. My husband is even worse. Thankfully, Alex has pretty good sleep habits. He could sleep through an explosion. Dennis on the other hand has a serious problem with sleep. You may have read about the Indigo Dreams Sleep CD we use to try to help him fall asleep. I think maybe I have finally realized his sleep issues started at birth.
We used to live in Florida by the beach. When I was ready to give birth to my first son Alex, the hospital my husband and I chose in which to deliver him had a nice birthing suite that had a view of the ocean. We thought that would be a wonderful, calming atmosphere for our child to be when he first entered this world. And it was.
When it was time for Dennis to bless us with his presence we tried to get the same birthing suite. However, it was being remodeled due to the damage it had sustained when we got blasted by three hurricanes in one year. So we had to settle for one of the suites on the other side of the hall. Dennis was a planned c-section so it was going to be a lot less stressful than the first time around. He was delivered in the afternoon and there were no complications afterward, so once he and I were checked out and got the “all clear” from my doctor, we were able to go back to our room. The whole experience was of course exhausting, so we all just wanted to get some rest that night.
My husband slept on a fold out bed which was like some torture device and since I had just been filleted like a fish had a c-section it was obviously going to be tough to sleep to begin with, but we all finally dozed off. Minutes after we began our slumber, the nurses started coming in to check on me, take my blood pressure, give me pain meds, etc. which naturally woke all three of us up. That was okay though since it had to be done. The nurse left and we all fell back to sleep shortly thereafter. Until…a screeching, blaring siren that sounded like a fire alarm woke us all up AGAIN while simultaneously scaring the crap out of us since we were all in a dead sleep. Then another nurse came into our room to assure us that everything was “fine.” Annoyed, we all managed to fall back to sleep anyway.
But not for long.
We are awakened yet AGAIN by the familiar “beep, beep, beep” sound of delivery trucks backing up. Evidently, hospitals get deliveries at all hours of the night (like 3 AM) and instead of enjoying the view of the ocean, we were graced with the noises (and view) of a loading dock. Wonderful.
Minutes after that, we were awakened by the siren again. The nurse came in again to let us know that everything was still “fine” but this time, we asked what the siren was for. It turns out it was the baby Lo-jack system (those ankle bracelets that keep strangers from walking off with babies in the hospital). The room at the end of the hall was right next to the exit door and if the people in that room had their baby too close to the door it sets the alarm off. Great design, huh?
So here is the cherry on the sundae.
By this time it was probably around 6 AM. We had not had more than an hour of consecutive sleep. There was a knock on the door. A woman walks in and asks if she woke us up. Let me think. It’s six o’clock in the morning, the room is dark and it’s quiet. What do you think Genius? Uh, yeah you did wake us up biotch!
“Hi. I’m so and so, the Head of Housekeeping. I just wanted to let you know that later today, we will have someone come in and clean your room and if there is anything you need you can call me. Here is my card.”
Huh? Are you freakin’ kidding me? I’m in a hospital and you WOKE ME UP at SIX’ O’CLOCK in the MORNING to tell me that someone is going to clean my room?!?! I just had a baby for Pete’s sake! I’m exhausted, in pain, I have been up ALL night listening to sirens and delivery trucks, I’ve been poked and prodded by nurses around the clock and my friggin boobs are sore and feel like they are going to explode. I could give two $%&*$ who you are and that someone is going to come in later today to clean my hospital room!!! Honestly. How asinine could this woman be to wake me up just to tell me she was having one of her staff members come to clean my room? If it was policy to let the current occupant of the room know they are going to clean it, then tape a note to my door since hello??? I JUST had a baby and I’m SLEEPING!!!
After that whole scene I was beyond irritated. I told my hubby that I didn’t care if he had to fold me in half at the seam, but to just get us the frig out of there so I could go home. If I couldn’t get a good night sleep at least I’d prefer to do it in my own bed. When my doctor came to check on me that day I explained everything that happened and how miserable and exhausted we were staying in the hospital. Ironic since the hospital stay is supposed to help you REST and RECOVER and provide round the clock help that you wouldn’t get at home. NOT my experience AT ALL.
Thankfully, my doctor was extremely sympathetic and understanding about our horrible experience and she agreed that we could be discharged that day if I felt up to it. I practically sprinted out of bed and packed up my baby and my belongings. I could not get out of that place fast enough!
I still have that lady’s business card to remind me how stupid that was - not that I will EVER forget it anyway.
Ya know, after thinking about that time again I am starting to believe that both of my boys’ current sleeping habits have a direct correlation to their birthing stories. Recounting this whole thing just made me realize… Alex is very calm and serene, just like the experience in his room was. Dennis is like a wild banshee, just like the experience in his room was. Maybe that explains it.
So, if by some chance (though slim or none) I ever decide to go ahead and have another baby, I think I will seriously consider a home birth…just in case!