Sunday, October 4, 2009

Day 163: Ainsley, Part 4

6:30 came and went. I wasn't headed back to the hospital. Not all day Saturday. Not all day Sunday. And even though I had a week to go before my due date, I felt overdone. Like insult had been added to injury. Lemon juice in the paper cut.


But I had an appointment on Tuesday afternoon at 3:30 with my favorite doctor at the practice. He was my one ray of hope. The single thread that kept me from pitching headlong into a batch of cookie dough.

So I did what any 9 month pregnant woman would do: I grabbed a bucket of paint, a roller brush, and repainted my entire house, ruining all my favorite maternity clothes in the process by brushing my ample anterior (and posterior, come to think of it) against freshly painted walls. By Tuesday at noon, I had sufficiently ignored everything else to the point that I was 3/4 done with the living room, family room, and halls. If that hadn't put me into full blown labor, nothing would.

Feeling optimistic, if tired, I entered my doctor's office early--3:00. I knew my appointment wasn't for half an hour, but I hoped I could squeeze in a bit early. I was hoping for good news and a ticket to Labor and Delivery. As I signed my name at the front desk, the nurse looked up at me with a confused expression and hesitantly said, "We thought maybe you'd gone into labor... when you didn't show up for your appointment this morning at 9:00."

"9:00??" I gasped, zipping open my little wallet and finding the appointment card from last week that read "Tuesday. 9:00 am." I felt the blood rushing to my face as I stuttered an apology, "Is there any way you could get me in, this afternoon?"

She turned to the computer and said "Well, I think we can get you in for a quick visit with the doctor on call. It's [Dr. Doogie.]"

Now my face paled. Not Dr. Doogie. "Isn't there some way--any way--I could see... who I was scheduled with this morning?" I whispered. "I'm sorry. Truly. But he's off. For the rest of the week." I nodded, numbly, and she said to take a seat.

I had not only forgotten my appointment, but I'd missed my one chance to see the doctor that I trusted implicitly. He had been my surgeon. Seen me through a very complicated pregnancy. Induced and delivered my second child. Comforted me through a miscarriage. Rejoiced with me in this current pregnancy. And he was.... off. Only a woman who has stood in those very swollen shoes will know what I was feeling. Like your favorite show has been cancelled, forever. Like when my favorite Ben n' Jerry's flavor, Purple Passionfruit Sorbet, was retired. Like there was nothing between you and a pregnancy that could, and would, go on for 13 more years.

They called my name. I went through the routine of standing on the scale as it groaned and the nurse made her little jokes. Waiting in the tiny office for Dr. Doogie. He showed up, looked over my chart, and said "Yup. Looks good. Make an appointment for next week."

At which point I lost all pride. "Please. I was in Labor and Delivery for hours last week. I'm just... so done. Can't you do anything?" At which he smiled his baby-toothed smile and chuckled "Oh! Don't worry! We won't let you go past 42 weeks."

I have never hated anyone more than I hated him at that moment, however irrational. I nodded curtly and made my appointment for the next week and thought I would rather crawl under a rock than face another week.

It was


Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

My doctor said once, "Don't worry, I've never known of a baby that didn't eventually come out." That did not help. Then he said something about the one lady who went 46 weeks, and finally admitted he was kidding when he saw the eyeballs almost pop out of my head.

Maree said...

Ah, bringing back some memories. I was *lucky* enough to be diabetic, so they would cheerfully induce me at 38 weeks, but that last 6 weeks felt like 6 years. And with baby #1, the first induction didn't work! So they gave me a couple of shots and said, "See you next week!"

I love your story so far.

Eve said...

I know I shouldn't be laughing but your writing is so darn GREAT! I love the visual of you "gasping and unzipping your wallet" to find the stupid card thing. As if they were wrong! That has happened to me too... I LOVE this story!!!!!