“Just so you know, you’ve tested positive…For methamphetamine…The baby will be tested for drugs. The hospital social worker will meet with me before I can be discharged. Child Protective Services will be contacted to evaluate my fitness as a parent.”
“’My inhaler’…My husband and my doula both hunch over their smartphones, searching for facts about asthma inhalers and drug tests.”
“The nurses, who begin to look alike, are no longer friendly…Every shift change, two nurses stand by my bed and inform another two nurses of my status as a combative patient. “This woman tested positive for methamphetamine,” they say. “She has been briefed on the risks associated with breastfeeding, and she refused our advice. She is breastfeeding at her own risk.”
“On my last day in the hospital, the social worker makes a visit…He says my son’s drug test was negative. Mine, however, has been sent to an outside lab for additional testing…He will try to hold off on contacting CPS. ‘Just expect them to show up at any moment'”
The weeks that follow are dark…the shades drawn, peeking out from behind the blinds, examining each car that drives past. Every phone call, every knock at the door, every pop of gravel in the driveway sets my heart racing. Every night shreds me to pieces, wondering if my son will be whisked away by morning. I am suddenly a stickler for housework. What if CPS comes and sees all the laundry? What will they think of our dishes in the sink? It seems insane to think someone could take my child away, yet testing positive for meth once seemed insane too.
Three weeks after I give birth, the hospital social worker phones and speaks to my husband…
Read the full article by Maggie Downs by clicking the image below, or here.