It’s intimidating moving to a new country and not speaking the language. It’s intimidating to have a baby–especially your first! So of course, we had to do both at once. Due date is approaching fast so we decided it was time to check out the two hospital options, Lund and Malmö, where we might end up going for the delivery. (You don’t need to pre-plan it here in Sweden, because of course everything is connected through your personal number.)
So yesterday we did a dry run of the Lund labor ward. Even in the US hospitals are complicated places, and since we have no idea what we’re doing and everything will be in Swedish, we really wanted to check things out. Good thing, too! After a bit of driving around, we arrived at the labor ward (förlossning) in Lund yesterday to find a silent waiting room with no officials and three locked doors leading to either gynecology, the neonate ward, or the labor ward. There was a machine where you could take a number. We took a number to see what would happen. We waited. A woman in labor showed up and stood around for a while, not seeming to know what to do either. We translated all the signs with John’s phone and were helpfully informed that we should wear shoe covers in wet weather.
Eventually we called the number for Lund’s labor ward and got a somewhat impolite woman who informed us that we “push the button.” (Upon telling the woman that we couldn’t read what was written by the buttons because they were in Swedish, she helpfully let us know “You are in Sweden.”) There being a couple button options (none of which said “push if you are in labor” when we translated them), we just pushed one and a woman immediately appeared and answered our questions, much to our relief!
Hard part done, right?