Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Dreaded Doctors Office

On the heels of my third miscarriage I have been making regular visits to the doctors office for blood tests to monitor my HCG levels until they return to zero.   

I see a specialist for my recurrent pregnancy loss ‘issues’.  A Reproductive Endocrinologist.  An RE.  The worst part about an office visit is the waiting room.  Although their waiting room isn’t as miserable as the waiting room at the OB office, it isn’t a happy place to find yourself either.  At least there aren’t babies galore and pregnant bellies everywhere I look.  Nothing is worse than sitting in a waiting room packed full of happy, optimistic soon-to-be parents when you are in the midst of a miscarriage.  It is a slap in the face, a ‘see what you can’t have’ kind of proof.  It is heartbreaking.  It makes the whole experience that much harder on me.

The specialists’ waiting room has a completely different feeling to me.  It is a depressing place.  I think, “It is so unfair that I have to be here”.  There is a sadness that comes over me when I am there.  It’s an admission of a problem.   There is no escaping that feeling when you are there.  No distractions to keep your mind off of your struggle.

I feel like there is a mutual, unspoken conversation that patients have with one another as they settle in.  We say to one another:
“It sucks that we have to be here”
“I hope it works out for you”
“I really hope that things work out for you SOON”
“I hope you at least have good news today”
“Good luck”
“I’m sorry”

At the same time I’m silently sympathizing with my new pal I find myself wondering about her story, circumstances, and challenges.  I size her up against myself. 
  • She’s older - IVF?
  • She’s younger - miscarriages, like me?
  • She looks nervous – is she doing an IUI, IVF, testing?
  • She looks nervous - maybe she is in a treatment cycle?
  • She looks sad – how many treatment cycles has she been through
  • She’s slightly smiling - maybe she got lucky and is looking forward to getting out of this dreadful place but respects my heartache by containing her happiness?  (I need to remember this when I get good news)
I long for the day that the RE sends me off to my OB with a growing belly, strong heartbeat and optimism.  That will be the day that the waiting room will no longer feel like a torture chamber.  It is then that I will sit in the OB waiting room, a cautiously expecting soon-to-be parent, scanning the waiting room for that sad-faced, flat-bellied woman that reminds me of myself and feel true heartache for her.

Rainbow:              I am consoled by the women that I have a mutual, unspoken conversation with in the waiting room

Rainshower:       It is unfair that a room full of chairs, magazines and diplomas has produced such a profound feeling of dread in me.

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