On Tuesday morning bel fidanzato drove me to pronto soccorso. We entered the hospital via the emergency room since that is how you do it here in public Italian hospitals. We had some check-ups Monday night and the gynecologist scarred us half to death as he told me that I should be admitted to the hospital straight away. Apparently the baby is not growing as much as he should be, and seeing that I was (on Monday) 38 weeks and 1 day they wanted me to deliver as soon as possible (also due to my having gestational diabetes.)
We weren't prepared to check in there and then, so went home, gathered the last of my things and spent a tense night wondering what lay ahead.
On Tuesday I was checked in and sent up to the maternity ward. It was a nightmare upstairs! The hallway was crawling with patients, visitors, anyone and everyone. I sat down with the same gynecologist from the night before, and a nurse and gave them all of the necessary information, had some vials of blood drawn, was sent away for a fetal heart and contraction scan and then headed off to the lovely maternity ward to find a bed.
But the maternity ward was full, actually it was over full. I was taken to the gynecology department which is next to the maternity ward and that was full too. A lot of the gynecology wards have closed in the surrounding hospitals, so everyone is being sent to Cosenza. And there is not enough room for them all in Cosenza. A make shift bed was erected in a room, without a pillow, blanket or sheets and I was told to just stay there. There was a poor girl in labour in one of the beds, and another apparently pregnant woman in the other bed. It was technically only a 2 bed room.
It was hot and humid, the apparently pregnant girl kept going into the bathroom and smoking. I was upset, worried and all alone since bel fidanzato was not allowed to remain out side of visiting hours. I was also confused about who was a doctor, who was a nurse, a cleaner....there is a rainbow of uniforms here, literally every colour you can imagine. I asked an assortment of people if there was a 'real' bed free for me, and if it was possible to have a visit with a doctor since I had been told to urgently check in the night before.
After harassing nearly everyone on the gynecology ward, I found a nice girl who I think was only a cleaner but she said that my name was not even on their list of patients, and it was lucky I had asked her if there was a free bed - as there was - but without my name on the list I would have been forgotten!
I was moved into a pleasant room, with an older woman who had recently had some sort of operation. She didn't smoke in the bathroom and she kept mostly to herself so I was happy. The friendly cleaner became my source of information since no one else would respond to my questions, and she told me that a visit was not possible until the doctors did their rounds the next morning. I was obviously nervous and angry since I'd been forced to check in via the emergency room, and now no one was even paying me any attention.
There was nothing I could do but wait until the next morning...