Touring Rhode Island Hospitals For Birth / Delivering A Baby

I’m pregnant. And if you are reading my blog and still don’t know that, I’m doing a terrible job. But for those of you who are just catching on to this game-changing fact, *spoiler alert* I have a human growing in me. But, all kidding aside, pregnancy has been a relatively great experience. I don’t know what this tiny baby looks like, or how he’s going to act when he comes out, but I still feel an unbelievable love for him.

The funny thing is, however, despite this intangible love, I neither have any idea where this tiny baby will be born, nor by whom. Upon further reflection, I really don’t know much about what will be happening to my son come this spring. I don’t have a baby shower planned. I don’t have baby furniture ordered, and I don’t know what color our baby boy’s room will be painted.

I don’t. I don’t. I don’t. Ahhhhh!

But that’s ok because, to be honest, I still sometimes forget that I’m even pregnant. It’s been hard to get in the pregnancy mode because, while I know he’s in there somewhere, I’m still just me.

The only holiday tradition I missed out on this year was coffee at breakfast. Pregnancy can’t stop my onesie pjs!

Aside from not skiing, or delving into a delicious glass of wine occasionally, my life hasn’t changed all that much. Sure, I have some sweet stretchy maternity pants and, oh, let’s not forget the molten-lava-like substance (otherwise known as acid reflux) that invades my esophogus every day. (I take the good with the bad). But, I still enjoy my movie nights, book club with my girl Becky, yoga (albeit the maternity variety), I still rock out to Just Dance 4 on the Wii, and there is no Mexican food that can escape my clutches. Even Blake is still doing his normal thing: Work, P90X2, Pats games (I am definitely a football widow now that the playoffs have begun), and man night with his buddies.

It’s odd. I haven’t really prepared for this major life change. But, a new year means new beginnings, right? Well – starting today, I’m going to begin acting like a soon to be mom. I made it a point to decide where I’d like to deliver.

After watching The Business of Being Born, I asked Blake if he’d like to think about a homebirth. I liked the idea of being comfy in surroundings I knew and trusted. This was his reaction…

That slight smirk you see in the picture above was captured immediately after I asked him. The smirk is his not so subtle mix of “You’re kidding, right?” and “There’s no way we are having a g*d d***n baby in our f’n apartment.”

Yes, we couldn’t be more opposite in our ways and demeanors. And, while I know he would do anything to make me happy because he loves me so much, I also respect his wishes too. He cited the many issues he has with how unsanitary it would be (which it wouldn’t) and the possibility of how too many things could go awry too quickly (which, again, they wouldn’t because our midwife could transport us to hospital in minutes if need be). I’m sure those concerns do play a part in his discomfort. But, I know my husband.

Much to my chagrin sometimes, he is the quintessential “man’s man.” Could you imagine the guy pictured above seeing a baby born in the same room he does pull ups? Like he always tells me, “there are certain things men cannot unsee.” I think me birthing a child whilst being naked in a blow up pool filled with water would probably fall under the “cannot unsee” category.

So to avoid the mess of sending my beloved husband to therapy for the next year, we have made our choice. We’re going to have our tiny baby in a big hospital. As such, we have now begun our epic hospital & birthing center search. We will be touring four different facilities in our tiny state:

Hopefully we find somewhere that fits, and then find a practitioner with whom we can feel comfortable. Sure, I was supposed to take care of this in the summer when I first found out I was pregnant, but I’m a procrastinator who works best under pressure.
Four hospitals in four weeks. Bring it! (Tony Horton would be so proud)

Otherwise, I may have to deliver this baby in a stable…my name is Mary after all. I wonder what Blake’s face would look like if that ended up happening. I’m taking suggestions for therapists just in case 🙂

Did you stick to your original hospital, or did you shop around? Have any experience with any of the hospitals listed?


  1. Hey girl, I wanted and planned for a home birth with Memorial as my backup hospital. At the time (2006) their midwives were known to be more open to natural birth and they had a lower c-section rate than W&I. Worth checking out. Good luck with your decision! xo
    p.s. In the end, after pushing for many hours at home, I was transported to W&I (Memorial was having a nurses' strike that day!!) and had Kaia via c-section. The best laid plans…

  2. We are lucky in Rhode Island to have some great options! And when I say "we" and "Rhode Island" because I still haven't given that up even though I've lived in MA for 4 years now! That being said, even though Women & Infants was a 30 min ride from home, this was the hospital I chose to deliver at. Admittedly, it's a big place that can seem procedural and impersonal, but what you don't see until the magic happens are the wonderful nurses here. We had such a great experience with all of the staff here that I look back fondly at my delivery and it was actually fun thanks to our nurse Beth. There's a lot of pressure put on new moms to make the perfect decisions, but in the end (as long as the facility is clean of course!) find people that you trust and trust your instincts!

  3. mary, all three of my kids were delivered at women & infants. perfect experiences each time even though my middle born was an emergency c-section…within seconds my son's life was saved! not sure if it's still offered because it's been soooo long since i was pregnant :o( but chad and i even indulged in their "romantic champagne dinner for new parents" that is delivered right to your room. i still have the champagne glasses 20 years later! i will add that i believe i had the best OB ever which added to my awesome experiences! good luck…whatever you decide, you'll make the best decision for you and your family! xx

  4. I rotated through the ER at Memorial, and I wouldn't advise having a baby there. Perhaps it has changed, and I wasn't in the Labor and Delivery, but I was not impressed with overall cleanliness of the hospital, or of the support services provided. If you have an issue(which you won't), they don't have access to specialties like Pediatric urology, or surgeons, which means an uncomfortable transfer if you need that level of attention–as in, via ambulance, and adjusting to whole new docs. I also remember that most of the women who worked at Memorial had their gyn/ob care at Women and Infants, and I think that says a lot. Just remember RI hospital is a teaching facility, so don't let a resident or intern touch you, unless you want to. Regardless, you will have a fantastic experience because you'll be an amazing mom, so do what feels right.

  5. This is soo awesome! I haven't found anything like it online. Is there a reason why you didn't tour South County? Also, do all patients have to share a shower post partum at Women and Infants or is that only if you use the ABC?

  6. That must have been an incredible experience. Newport Hospital used to do water births, but they haven't in well over a year and a half. I guess the doctors who deliver there no longer want to do water births. The only option for that type of birth in Rhode Island is at a home birth

  7. My now 8 month old son was born at Memorial Hospital and I can say hands down, no matter how far away I live, all future children of mine will also be born there. It was a wonderful wonderful experience. I wanted a natural birth, and was enthusiastically given this, but I felt all along, that if intervention had been needed, it would have been available. I am so thankful for the birth experience I had at MHRI.

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