Carmageddon Might Force Me to Give Birth In My Car!


backseat of car
Could THIS be my L&D room?
Alright all of you Angelenos freaking out about Carmageddon -- you can stop your bitching about not being able to make it to the beach or having to cancel your hard-to-get dinner reservations when the 405 Freeway (the main pipeline running through Los Angeles) gets shut down this weekend. Sure, you may be a wee bit inconvenienced, but are you days from giving birth? Huh? Are you?

Because I am! I'm pregnant with twins, less than two weeks from my due date, and I know that I don't know you or anything so I can't really ask you to care, but, what if I go into labor this weekend? For the love of all things good and holy, what am I going to do?!?!

First of all, our hospital is a 30-minute drive away, without traffic. Why did I pick this place so far, far away? Because when I first found out that I was having twins, I wanted the hospital that had the best NICU, concerned that my little ones could be premature. Well, luckily, thankfully, they're now fully-cooked ... but I'm miles away from my chosen hospital and doctor! Normally, this drive wouldn't really be an issue, but with gazillions of cars jamming up the side streets, it could be total mayhem. It might take more like hours to get to the hospital if it's as bad as they (you know the "they" that know everything) predict.

So if I do go into labor, and we're stuck in traffic, what then? Get out and walk? Aargh, it's times like this that I really wish that Segways had caught on! Oh God, what if I have one of those really fast, two contractions, baby-just-falls-out labors and my husband has to deliver our babies himself by the side of the road? We would be that 11:00 news story: "Blood Everywhere: Woman Gives Birth to Twin Babies During Carmageddon Traffic Jam." Should we load sterilized water, Handi Wipes, blankets and nail scissors into our car, just in case? Will we be able to find a "backseat baby delivery" instructional video on YouTube? Oh, and one of my babies is transverse, so how's that going to work? Maybe we can flag down a traffic cop to help assist.

I think that we'll just have to get in the car and go at the first signs of labor, even if those signs of labor are really more like gas pains. My mom was in labor for awhile with me, so I'm hoping that if genetics has anything to do with it, I'll have at least 12 hours to get to the hospital. Someone suggested I just call an ambulance so I don't have to worry about the traffic, except that I'm not sure contractions twenty minutes apart would qualify as an emergency. Plus, ambulances aren't hovercrafts -- they're going to get stuck in the same traffic! Another friend suggested we drive to the hospital that's ten minutes away and see if they'll Medi-vac me to my hospital. Of course, at that point, I should probably just deliver there, huh?

Of course, we asked the OB for his professional opinion, thinking he might have some complicated, medical disaster-scenario plan in place for his patients. Perhaps the hospital has a secret supply of jet-packs reserved for just this kind of situation? No, apparently not. Instead, I guess he thought we were just looking for a human-GPS because all he did was map out the best route to the hospital. Oh, and reassured me that he lives near the hospital, too. Good to know at least one of us will be able to get there.

Soooo, I guess the only thing to do is just make sure that I don't go into labor this weekend. Because I have about as much control over that as I do the traffic. Hopefully, fellow LA-residents will just stay close to home, get to know their neighbors, discover a local Thai restaurant that they never even realized was on their street, all of which will just make my path to the hospital even easier. Just in case though, maybe I should see how much my husband knows about home birthing.

Do you ever worry about not making it to your hospital or birth center in time?

Image via tienvijftien/Flickr

labor & delivery


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Ninja... NinjaRainbow

I worried about that non-stop with my Daughter! In fact I was on my way to an emergency c-section when I had her in the hallway after 27 hours of being in labor.

SandM... SandMsMama

Why don't you contact a midwife and ask her to be on call incase you go into labor this weekends she'll come to you. No worries about that. And tons of people do it, so there's nothing "wrong" with it. Or find a birthing center close to you that can handle the situation if anything goes wrong. Don't be forced into a csection just bc they're breech or sunny side up. I've witnessed a few breech births and everything was fine

nonmember avatar Jen

Another thought would be to find out if there is a posh/swanky/comfy hotel near the hospital and treat yourself to a cabana, breakfast in bed, etc. You're relaxing as a babymoon/staycation without the worry of being too far from the hospital.

nonmember avatar Cynthia

My hospital was 20 min away without traffic and I made it just in time with my 3 deliveries. My 1st was 5.5hours from start until he was in my arms. 2nd was 1hr 45min, and 3rd was about 2.5hrs. I worried with all 3 if we'd make it and the 2nd almost arrived in the elevator!

Spike... SpikedMango

I like Jen's suggestion, myself. Hole up in a nice hotel close to the hospital and relax and treat yourself until the time comes. :)

ashjo85 ashjo85

I had the same though! Find a hotel right near you hospital and just relax! If it's babytime, you'll be right there. If not, you'll have an amazing weekend of relaxation before the big day.

hutch... hutchfam2007

I agree with a previous poster that if you are really afraid of not being able to make it to the hospital, and being this close to your estimated due date with twins! you may want to find a hotel near your hospital of choice for the weekend so there are no worries :) or you could just make sure that you do not go into labor this weekend.

I have heard tons of ways to bring on labor, but none to stop it.... ?? hehe . as I have commented to you before, GOOD LUCK!!!!!

Melis... Melissa042807

Not worried here, because when I have my next baby, we live two minutes away from my hospital LOL

Of course I live in a city with one - ONE - freeway. The interstate. And I like it.

mama_... mama_em_c

I am about 20/25 min away from mine with little or no traffic. If I were you thought I would make the investment to stay in a hotel right there but I don't know if you will be able to get a room this close to it because you prob arent the only one with that idea... 

tyrel... tyrelsmom

I think that EVERYONE should be prepared to deliver their own baby in case of emergency. There is no harm in you and hubby giving yourself a crash course and taking supplies along JIC.

I also second the idea of finding a local midwife as a backup for just in case this weekend.

Good luck.

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