My Mind Was Reeling

I had to drive to Madison today, to inspect the condo we still own after the tenants moved out two days ago.  I also meeting a painter there to discuss repairs and necessary repainting.  We did “divide and conquer” so I only had Quentin in me for the two-and-a-half hour drive in each direction.

About thirty minutes in the drive, I felt weird.  My abdomen and uterus were uncomfortable.  I should have chalked it up to normal pregnancy sensations, but my mind immediately went elsewhere.  I decided that it was the same feeling that I had right before I went into labor with Quentin.  I had an internal debate with myself, trying to tell my own mind that it was not possible for me to remember that pre-labor feeling, as that was over five years ago.  I started to feel nauseous, but it was unclear if this was symptom of my body, or a symptom of my mind.  The back of my neck felt cold and I began to chill all over.

My mind began to think quickly.  I could drive to the hospital in Madison. What would I say?  That I felt weird?  Then I remembered what we talked about in my support group: the hospital staff do not have to live with these feelings.  I do.  What if I were admitted?  Ger could leave Theo with friends in our area, but what about Quentin?  I looked back at his sweet face, absorbed in watching a movie.  I still have friends in Madison, I reasoned.  Someone would take him.  But I imagined sitting with him, as I was hooked up to an ultrasound or heart rate monitor.  How would I explain?

The sensation started to ebb and flow.  I reasoned that upon arrival I would walk around the condo. If it disappeared, no reason to be concerned.  If it didn’t, the hospital was only a few minutes away. Or should I not waste time, and go directly to the hospital?  I ran through the statistics in my mind. One day shy of 27 weeks, 90% chance of survival.

I lifted my shirt and put my hand directly on my abdomen, waiting anxiously for movement. Nothing.  I looked at the clock. 31 minutes until arrival. Wasn’t it just 21 minutes last time I looked?  No, 21 miles. Straight to the hospital, I reasoned, unless I felt kicking.  Several more minutes passed. Then there it was, a kick. Several in a row.  I made a decision and went to the condo. By the time I got out, I was feeling completely normal.  The odd feeling had passed.

After meeting with painter, we got back in the car to go home. Before I left, I pulled over in a parking lot. I lay my driver’s seat completely flat to do a full set of kick counts, just to be sure before I started a full drive home. I thought surely Quentin would ask what I was up to, but he was completely absorbed in his movie again. Within fifteen minutes, I had reached the necessary ten kicks and felt comfortable that I could drive home.