I never thought that I would witness anything like this. This is a developing story but I will do my best to describe what is going on right now... The City of Calgary is under a state of emergency due to a massive flood that has caused over 25 communities (about 100,000 people) to be evacuated from their homes. Surrounding communities, especially the beautiful town of Canmore, Alberta and High River and Black Diamond are all basically under water. It's devastating. Here in Calgary, our downtown core has been evacuated and is closed, the Calgary Drop-In Centre has been evacuated, the Calgary Zoo has been evacuated and animals have been taken to higher ground and many major roads have been closed. I have also just heard that the Calgary Saddledome is has been flooded. The Bow River and the Elbow River are both flowing high and dangerously fast with debris such as flipped over canoes, furniture, parts of houses etc. We have all been advised to stay at home. The Calgary Police and other emergency workers are going above and beyond (some working into their 24th hour of their shift) to help Calgary citizens during this crisis.
Our house (and thankfully the houses of YMC's other Calgarian bloggers) are on high enough ground that we have not had to evacuate, but as I write this, my husband and I are looking out our window where there are men who are measuring our cul-de-sac's elevation to see if there is a risk of flooding on our streets. This is insane. Many of our friends have been forced from their homes, left with only a suitcase and the eerie unknown of what sort of devastation they will be coming home to and when.
And it is projected that there is much more rain to come. This whole situation is truly surreal.
Although my focus is on our poor city and those Calgarians that have been evacuated from their homes, I can't help but wonder if I will deliver my baby today, tomorrow, or if she will hold out a few more days. I've been having on-and-off contractions for a few days and fairly intense cramping. Before this flood mayhem began, I was doing everything under the sun to kick my labour into high gear. I've stopped that now. My due date is this Tuesday and it is my 2nd baby, so she really could come at any time. I've spent the last 10 months doing whatever I can to prepare for a peaceful and trauma-free birth experience as I had a fairly traumatic birth experience with my son. This time, I wanted more than anything to deliver this baby naturally and without injury. Now that our city is under a state of emergency and I have no idea if my midwives or doula would even be able to get to my home or the hospital, I'm not exactly feeling a sense of "peace" about my impending birth. I'm trying to ignore the cramps that I'm having and any other signs that baby is coming, whereas in the past few days, that's all that I could focus on. What would my birth experience be this time? Is my baby going to be ok? What will she look like? Is she in fact a "she"? But now, I can't help but hope that I don't meet my baby for a few days. The plan that we have carefully put into place is all up in the air now as I have no idea what state our hospital is in or if I still have access to my care providers.
Has anyone ever been in this situation before? Is there anyone else in Calgary that is about to deliver a baby?
Please keep Calgary in your thoughts this weekend. I don't think that any of us realize the extent of carnage and devastation that our city has endured and will endure in the next few days.