I mentioned a few weeks back that I have long thought that hospitals could be the tenth circle of Dante’s Inferno that he never got around to mentioning. The long white hallways, the bleak rooms with their fluorescent lighting and medical equipment that closely resembles medieval torture devices, the dastardly hospital gowns meant to mortify—just thinking about them gives me the willies.
But, it turns out that all hospitals are not created equal.
I came to this conclusion during our hospital’s maternity tour a couple of weeks back. The hospital, or at least the maternal area, was the antitheses of cold and sterile. The labor and delivery suites could rival some of the best luxury hotels I have visited. Dark wood furnishings sit against walls painted in rich but soothing shades, while a flat screen television and CD player hang out next to the in-room hot tub. As for the fluorescent lights? Thank the Lord, they are nowhere to be found. In their place is adjustable mood lighting.
Yeah, it’s official: This place rocks.
I don’t know how the room felt about me, but on my end, it was love at first sight. In fact, as the nurse reviewed the details of hospital policy, I whispered to Tom that I might be tempted to have a baby every nine months if it means I get to stay there. Having someone bringing me breakfast, lunch and dinner in bed sounds like my kind of vacation. Having an 8-pound human being exit my body, not so much, but you can’t have everything.
Tom’s thoughts during the tour weren’t quite as positive as mine, ranging from concerns about the room being too dark for him to effectively use the long-handled fish net (i.e. pooper scooper) while I’m in the birthing tub to faux jealousy over the fact that I get to sleep in the comfy bed while he gets relegated to the sleeper sofa. Next time around, I’ll let him have the nice bed—as long as he agrees to birth the baby.
In addition to the aesthetic perks, the suites’ infant-care areas mean Baby Jacob never has to leave my sight. There is an “infant-security” system that buzzes anytime a baby is taken beyond certain parameters. And, Tom’s favorite feature, the cafeteria is just steps away from the rooms.
It’s hard to believe that the next time I walk the halls—or are wheeled down them—Baby Jacob’s arrival will be just a few hours away. I couldn’t think of a better place for him to make his appearance. Hopefully, he agrees.