My anxiety-of-the-morning is that when I am finally released, my derrier will resemble a flattened pancake appearance of an eighty year old man's behind. All of my countless hours at the gym performing circuits of squats, lunges, and leg presses will have been for naught. My highly ritualized, daily exercise routine in order to keep my pregnancy weight gain at a minimum, has completely left the building. I know that this worry is trivial and insignificant compared to the bigger picture of keeping baby happily incubating, but still--a girl has to take some pride in her rear assets!
I am not the ideal candidate for bed rest. Most of my life progresses in a dizzying, whirlwind of activities, as I am constantly fluttering about, lacking the ability to sit still. At home, my OCD and anal-retentive behavior is usually full fledged, I am constantly cooking, cleaning, organizing everything. My husband often implies that I have a physical impairment, which only allows me to be sedentary in five minute increments, max.
When my Doctor first informed me of the possibility of being on bed rest for months, I felt as though I had lost a limb. How could I, a ridiculously proactive, energetic person be confined to a bed for two months??
My friends and family, all familiar with my inability to sit still, empathized with my prognosis. Through modern technology, my girlfriends utilized different avenues to present me with opportunities for humor and distractions. Barbara-in Denver-continues to text me random, fun facts of the day and finds a way to relate them to my present condition; Amy-in Chicago-entertains me with escapades of Gina--her Seaside Heights, New Jersey alter-ego, who is looking for her Italian Stallion and has an obsession with all things Ed Hardy (view our exchange under the comment section in blog); Heather-in Denver-suggested that I find nooks and crannies within my hospital bed and tie up little arts and crafts activities easily accessible. When my mom arrived on day three with a journal, I devised a way to tie it to my bed with a ribbon.
Also, my uncle suggested that I pull a Martha Stewart and redecorate my hospital room as she did her jail cell (any tips for easily redecorating a hospital room are welcome). The nurses have encouraged me to feel as comfortable here as possible, as long as I refrain from having candles for fear of burning down the hospital. My mom's boyfriend, Sheldon, caustically jokes if I have had the time yet to hire a secretary so he can be penciled in for a visit.
My other friends and family are continuously bombarding me with technical stimulation as my cell phone, text messages,and email in-box are constantly filled with words of encouragement. Additionally, I have discovered the tremendous support of the nursing staff and as thanks, have tried to barter my counseling services, offered to paint their nails (no takers yet), and have tried unsuccessfully to expedite information on the going-ons of the other inmates (I think I have inherited a tad of my mother's yenta-prowess). I have also suggested to the nursing manager an online, support group for the eleven women under confinement. However, not all of the women have computers and because of HIPPA regulations, the nurses are not allowed to disclose information among patients.
I have also discovered that being labeled as a "patient" affords me the opportunity to fully exercise my anxiety-induced hypochondria, without being judged. Instead of sitting at home and googling to death something weird happening to my pregnant body, I can simply press the unassuming nurse call button on my bed and ask: "is this normal?"
So, it seems that even though I will remain on bed-rest-lock down, my days are still filled with productivity. Instead of expediting physical energy, my brain is getting a major, mental makeover. I was definitely due for a tune-up in that department. Of course, I may still try to sneak in a bit of room cleaning and sterilization at 3am, when I can't sleep, but old habits do die hard....