Pregnancy can be scary. And we had our first scare pretty early on in our pregnancy, shortly before our first doctor's appointment. I was in DC on business and we still didn't really know much about What To Expect When [we're] Expecting. There's no need to get too graphic about things, but January became concerned and we both freaked out a bit. I rushed back home, we got in to the doctor a little earlier, and we got the official word that everything was A-OK.
This past weekend gave us our second scare of the pregnancy. January had already been a little concerned about a couple things that didn't seem quite right. She had a couple of her good friends, Erica and Liz, in from out of town and they had spent Saturday doing a good bit of walking around, doing all the things people should do when they visit Columbus -- shopping in the Short North, ice cream at Jeni's, dinner at the Burgundy Room -- so January did have a somewhat more physically active day than normal. Sunday morning, January woke me up at 7am concerned that something was really wrong. We rushed to the emergency room, where we proceeded to have our morning completely wasted.
Things were off to a good start when we were admitted directly into a screening room; The emergency room was mostly empty at this time of day, so we were optimistic that we would get some pretty quick attention and, hopefully, be on our way. After getting her blood pressure taken -- it was a little low -- we were taken to an examination room to be seen by a nurse. We explained the situation and January was given an IV and told she would have an ultrasound to make sure everything was OK. Two hours later, a technician finally wheeled January off to get looked at. This is the part where I was left behind, but I'm told the ultrasound experience was pretty disappointing. Not that I would expect any vaginal examination to be, you know, fun or anything, but it sounds like they were pretty clinical and rough in their examination. January was wheeled back to the exam room after fully twenty minutes of prodding and not so much as a word.
Another hour later, January and I are still sitting in this room waiting for someone to tell us what the hell is going on. It's at this point where your mind begins to work through the logic: A long wait means bad news, right? But maybe nothing's wrong and they're just pissed that we wasted their time, so they're making us wait now. Could they have forgotten about us?
Then, at just the moment we're nearly in tears with anticipation, Doctor Asshole shows up. My apologies for the language, but I think you'll agree that it is a well deserved nickname. Doctor Asshole, Ph.D. Walks in, perches delicately on the counter with his very best look of condescension, and passes along this gem: "Well, I have news. You're O positive." <long pause> "Universal donor.1"
Because that's exactly what we were waiting to find out. January's blood type. We could finally breathe a sigh of relief knowing that January can donate blood to anyone who needs it. Another minute later, Doctor Asshole tells us that they were able to see "a flicker" on the ultrasound, but nothing definitive, and that we should get in to see our regular doctor this week to make sure everything was OK. Everything he said was punctuated with the idea that he had something else to say, but was watching his words very closely. We had to specifically ask him multiple times if the baby was all right, and the best he was able to tell us was that "if [we] are working on a miscarriage" there's really nothing they can do this early on, but that if "the floodgates do open" we should come back. Seriously. What an asshole.
So we went back home where Liz and Erica were waiting for us. I can't even tell you how great it was to have them in town for this particular weekend; While I focused on not freaking out and keeping January comfortable, they helped by keeping her mind off of things. They spent the afternoon watching movies, talking, and cooking -- that Saturday would have been a lot longer and more unbearable without them.
Fortunately, our awesome non-asshole doctor was able to get us in the next afternoon. As she walks into the examination room with our file in hand, before even examining January, she says "I see from your ER ultrasound that everything was fine..."
Wait, what? She could tell that from just glancing at our ER report? Which means Doctor Asshole could have told us that same thing and not made us worry for the past 30 hours? Well that's just super. But at least the good news is that The Captain is doing just fine, and we have another photo to add to the collection.
The lesson to learn here, the lesson we apparently didn't listen to when my sister went through the same thing during her pregnancy, is that if you think something might be wrong but it's not strictly speaking an emergency, go to the triage center instead of the emergency room. Especially Riverside Methodist's emergency room.