Notes on a hospitalized pregnant woman Pt. 8

“Good morning sweets.” Charley is pooping and he left the TP on the other side of the new house.

“Good morning Charles. 


…Have a good day. 

…I believe in you.”

I like him sober and I can only keep my fingers crossed that he stays sober and gets the house into some order for whenever I eventually arrive with the baby. That feeling of impending doom won’t subside.

I feel gross again today, even before I look in the mirror. Dr. Lukenaar probably brought me Japanese cherry blossom fragrance mostly because she knew I’d be farting all the time.

While I’m in the bathroom I sneeze and my phone falls out of my hands, between my legs and into the toilet. It appears to be working but if it stops then there goes my life support. My connection to anything outside of the hospital will disappear and I’ll shrivel up like a shrimp in Ursula’s lair.

At least the new, third medicine in my blood pressure prescription seems to be working. The numbers are down, even after being on the phone with the car insurance company for two hours. I had a headache and was prepared for the stroke but the numbers were considerably down. My blood pressure doesn’t listen to me. My feelings of stress or discomfort don’t coincide with my “grades”. This feels like a game with rules I can’t control.

Time is blurring together. I go for a walk. I go for another walk. I’m in a dream state. I’m that annoying person who says “I’m not religious but I’m spiritual.” And, “If I were anything it would be Buddhist, but that’s not a religion, it’s a philosophy; yeah I guess that’s what I am.” And if you were to question me I’d have a series of books I can cite. There’s a non-denominational chapel by the main entrance next to the gift shop. I’ve been in three times thinking to myself “it can’t hurt” and making notes in the guestbook each time. “Still hoping and praying for the best. Staying positive. …Amen. CT” it’s very formal and optimistic. Today I pinch off some holy water and kneel before Jesus. Then I sit by a box of tissues and a new translation of the Tao Te Ching. Flip to the page that feels right. 

Verse 30: “He who wholeheartedly help the ruler of men by means of the Way/ Will not use military weapons to force himself upon the world…” This verse is about how war is horrible and should be immediately, defiantly ended as soon as possible.

At 7 pm my headache is a nightmare. I’m watching “The Craft” (and wondering why I ever liked it so much), and I haven’t heard from Charley all day (it’s Friday night, is he drunk again? Is he wrecking my car?) and my head is pounding and I want to cut it off.

I have a new nurse for night shift. Her name is Marusy and she reminds me of a desperate housewife, probably from New Jersey. In fact I’d be surprised if she wasn’t from New Jersey but I don’t want to ask her “Are you from New Jersey?” That’s would be like asking a heavy girl if she’s pregnant. 

Marusy was positive my bad headache was caused by high blood pressure.

“Did you get a headache when your blood pressure went up today?”

“No it started with the new medicine when it went down.”

“You had lower pressures today though.”

“I know and I didn’t have a headache the last few days and I had much higher pressures.”

“…I think you have a headache because of high blood pressure.”

My head was still pounding at 10:30 pm and I had just written three long texts to Charley hoping he hadn’t gotten drunk because that would mean he could get pulled over, my car would be impounded and he would maybe go to jail and my six animals would be sent to a shelter and basically that would mean he had fucked up for the last time and was officially the most horrible and selfish trash person in the world. Then I apologized if I was wrong. And then I somehow spilled my bag of ice (to soothe my head) all over the hospital bed. 

Confession: sometimes this room reminds me of the yellow wallpaper and I’m afraid I’ll start seeing faces in the wall; other times this sterile room feels like a sanctuary or womb. I feel like a monk in a Nepalese cave except a monk visited by various nurses throughout the day and watching movies while stuffing his little monk mouth with ice cream and strawberry shortcake and stressing about his husband. 

My optimistic, happy brain: Maybe Charley’s sleeping. Maybe he came home after a long day of work and passed out between the dogs. 

My pessimistic/realistic Eeyore brain: He probably went to his friend Tad’s house after work and spent the little money he made on alcohol and now he’s wasted.

Paranoid brain: He got drunk and drove YOUR car drunk without a license and then a cop pulled him over and now literally everything has gone to shit.

I take an Ambien and wake in a puddle of sweat and change my shirt and sleep deeply. In the morning Charley calls:


Our puppy Duke ate Charley’s phone charger. That’s the 9th charger Duke has eaten. That’s why I didn’t hear from Charley until this morning. 

“KEEEEEEMMSSS!!!!!” I hated this nickname at first but now he charges it with virbrato and it’s kind of okay. Keems. 

I miss my husband.

The nurse today, Michelle, another apparently young and attractive Salt Lake City nurse who somehow already has four kids in high school, tells me to chill. She says sit in bed and so I sit in bed. Nurses pop in every half hour. “You okay?” (For someone stuck several weeks in a hospital? Sure.) “Doing okay?” (I would be if you’d stop asking me.) “Can I get you anything?” (I could use some nail polish and a vibrator.)

Hello 911. I’m watching “Elizabethtown” again and crying. This movie makes me happy/sad/hopeful. It makes me miss Charley. He’s my leading man.