First it was the difficultly of the move. Not being able to really help with the packing or the unpacking was definitely not great. I had good friends swoop in and help a bit though, not just with packing but bringing us meals and stuff.
Probably a half a week or so after the move Ryan started getting testy about it. I'd have been on bed rest want to be laying around and I was getting really resentful of him acting that way so we kept getting into tiffs. Honestly, both of us understood the other we were just getting frayed nerves from the bed rest. That's still continuing, where the majority of the time we're totally fine but then he'll imply I could do more or something and we'll start snapping at each other again. Sigh.
Hopefully on Tuesday I'll be put on modified bed rest and get more freedom. That's when I see the doctor next.
This week has been especially tough. Last weekend I didn't really see anyone, except one of our friends stopped by for about twenty minutes Sunday night. Of course last Sunday my niece Hannah was born which was extremely exciting, but also emotional as after the initial joy the poignant "I wish I was there" feelings set in. Then through out the week even before I was on bed rest we'd rarely see anyone because most people work. Normally I talk to my mom and younger sister very often and my older sister often. My mom however was busy visiting with her grandchild and daughters, my younger sister was also in the mix, and of course I wasn't going to bother my older sister while she has a newborn! So my communication with America was greatly hampered.
Truth is I don't really have that many friends in India to just talk to, we either see them in person or maybe exchange like two texts.
Then the whole thing with my friend from America maybe going to see me and then not happened and I got really mopey for a few days.
Then this weekend I was kind of hoping to see some of our friends yesterday, but it didn't happen. I knew they were all busy today (Sunday) because the Passion tour, a Christian concert, had come to Delhi and since our friends are pretty much all Christian they were all going. Ryan went as well.
Actually yesterday Ryan went to bed late, at about 1:30pm. He works nights and has to leave by 10:30 pm, so he basically just woke in time to get ready and go. Then when he came home I had to have him run some errands (pick up prescription refills and groceries) and then he went straight to bed because he'd have to wake up early to go to this concert. Our friend came and picked up him around four and they went to the concert together. Then I expected him to go straight to work from the concert.
However he did come home, but only for about ten minutes before his cab to take him to work arrived. He's going to try to come home a little early today, we'll see.
I think my nesting hormones have arrived because earlier I started crying thinking about how ill prepared we are for this baby. Ryan only gets paid once a month and so every month it's been "next month" that we'll buy stuff for the baby. Personally we have only bought ONE item for the baby, a single shirt that I saw and got hormonal and had to have a few months ago. That's it.
|the stuff Lydia brought from America from my family and friends|
We have no furniture yet, none of the big items. There's so much left to get. With Ryan only getting paid once a month there really haven't been that many paychecks since I got pregnant. Oh I should mention that our health insurance doesn't cover anything but hospitalization, so all the doctor's visits and ultrasounds are out of pocket.
We found out we were pregnant in October. October's excess pretty much went to going to the doctor plus a bit saved that got spent during Lydia's visit in November. Lydia's visit also ate a good portion of November's, the rest of which went to Christmas. Then December's went to doctor's bills and other expenses that we just hadn't gotten to in a while with all the craziness of the past couple months. January's pay check went to the copay for the hospitalization and saving up for the move. February's gotten eaten up by the move pretty much entirely. And now we're approaching March's paycheck now. Hopefully we can make some baby purchases with this one, because if the baby comes on it's due date there's only two more paycheck's after this one. And of course the reason I'm on bed rest is they're afraid we won't make it to the due date, so really we don't know how many there are to go... I am told you will get minor gifts post delivery here in India, like clothes, so I'm not worrying about that. But in my area of the US, I really didn't know anyone who didn't have a shower and I heard from my friends that they "have no idea how anyone could afford to have a baby without a shower" and I admit that's how I feel now. Showers are definitely not a part of the Indian culture. And planning definitely is a part of the American culture, so going into having this baby without having everything he or she needs, well, the thought is making me nauseous.
Ryan on the other hand thinks I'm worrying about the wrong thing. He is freaking out about the cost of the delivery. Our insurance covers up to a set limit, period. That price point is about what the bare minimum for an uncomplicated delivery at the mid range better hospitals in this city are... however my bleeding hospitalization last month was put under the same expense line. So basically we have about 3/4 of that money left. Our doctor works with five different hospitals. Two of them are hopelessly out of our price range. One is a birthing center with a great NICU. Our doctor says regardless of where we deliver if the baby is premature she'll have it transferred there. However they don't have a blood bank or other medical stuff that might be needed if something was up with me, so Ryan is feeling a little better about the next option. The next option is a full functioning hospital, the same one I went to for the complications last month. Both of those options are around the same price, with one just a tiny bit more expensive. Both are now outside what our insurance would cover so we'd be looking at minimum a fairly large chunk of money for the uncomplicated vaginal delivery, and possibly a hefty amount if it got complicated.
If we make it to term there's a third choice, a small hospital that's just recently added a deluxe maternity wing. If we have an uncomplicated birth there, it's possible we can get insurance to cover it all (regardless there's a co-pay.) However they have neither blood bank nor NICU on site, so Ryan and I have agreed that we'd only go there if I was term.
We want to go tour facilities but obviously can't with me on bed rest, so hopefully we'll get cleared Tuesday. Even if she doesn't put me on a modified bed rest that would normally allow it I plan on asking her if she thinks it'd be okay for me to go for a tour, because after all if something bad were to happen I'd be at site at a medical facility, right? I really wouldn't want to just send Ryan because truth is he doesn't research the crap out of this kind of stuff as I do and he gets confused. He's always asking questions that don't need to be asked and getting confused and leaving out stuff that does. This is just more my field of expertise... plus he's not the one who is going to be in labor so I need to be comfortable with the facility more so than he, though if he's getting the heeby jeebies or something that'd definitely be taken into account.
One important question I want to ask these different hospitals is will Ryan be allowed in the room with me? I would immediately rule out any hospital that wouldn't allow that. We talked to our doctor and she's fine with him there, but she says we may encounter resistance from the hospitals. As I've said before, modern India is very much like America 60 years ago or so, and so Dads apparently are usually in the waiting room. However I am not comfortable enough with any females here in India to want them in the room with me and I do not want to go through that alone. The thought of being alone is terrifying. Especially alone with medical professionals. Even before India I had a bit of "white coat syndrome" and now that I'm here I'm finding patients aren't respected in the same way here as in America. That is, the attitude is very much just let us do our job and they seem disconcerted when I actually want to know what a medicine is before they jab it in my arm and stuff like that. Sigh. You really have to fight to be respected as a patient here and I'm going to be too busy having a baby to have the energy to do it, so I really need Ryan.
All in all I feel really scared and worried... and I know I shouldn't be! I know I need to be casting my cares on Jesus and that God has not given us a spirit of fear. Sigh. But childbirth and becoming a mom are just seriously scary stuff and that feels like it should be enough to deal with... but dealing with those things in a foreign country whose culture seems at odds with me most of the time is overwhelming. I have been trying to think about how to express my feelings and I feel like the best way to put it is I'm missing my safety net. In America I'd be worrying about having enough for the baby, but I'd have the safety net of a shower. In America I'd be restless and lonely if I was on bed rest, but I would have more people available to come over or talk on the phone. In America I'd be scared about the hospital disregarding me, but at least I'd be able to have a frame of reference for how it's going to be, here I am scared they're assuming I'm okay with something I'm not because it'd never occur to me they'd do it that way, especially since they don't seem to inform patients of much. I am definitely the kind of person that going into medical situations would ten times rather be over informed than under. In America I'd be worried about being a good mom, but I'd have the safety net of my own mom.
I will say though that if we gave birth in America we'd probably go broke from the cost of it. Sheesh, medical care is so freaking expensive there!
Still, it's not that I want to go back to America necessarily. It's just I feel very inadequate and isolated. But I had a very telling dream the other day.
I was on a plane flying to America for a visit. I was pregnant. And as I neared the airport to land I suddenly realized I didn't have a visa to return to India! I wasn't sure I could get back to India! I began panicking and calling Ryan and freaking out.
And the refrain that kept going through my mind was "I don't want to be trapped in a foreign country." I didn't want to give birth in a foreign country. I didn't want to be trapped in a foreign country where Ryan wasn't...
That "foreign country" was America. I thought it over and over.
Earlier I was venting to Tabitha and she said I should "come home." I told her about that dream and ended with "Home is not such a simple concept anymore."
Which reminds me of when I was on the plane flying here to India. I was scared and thrilled and a bit panicked. I'd never left the country before. And God kept telling me over and over again, "This is not your home. America is not your home. India is not your home."
I think as a foreigner it's easy to slip into thinking about how things are at "home" but I also know that in reality, I don't have a home here on earth. I'm a foreigner everywhere. And it feels more true now, as my dream shows, then it did when I moved. Living abroad changes you, as the cliche says and says because it's true. If I did move home I'd probably suffer reverse culture shock. I probably really don't have a home here on earth anymore, if I ever did.
But it really is exhausting.