May 24, 2018

Sitting in the OB/GYN waiting room, I decided it was rude, or at least insensitive on the clinic’s part, that the glowing pregnant women must sit in chairs right next to the patients that are being diagnosed with or treated for infertility. Seems like a lousy set up.

Sadness rose in my throat as I was having the internal and external ultrasounds done. I’d always pictured my first ultrasound as the moment when I get to see my and Ethan’s baby growing inside me. I had assumed my husband and mother-in-law would be here, both overjoyed by what was happening. Instead, I was alone. And instead of a baby, I was looking at my empty, retroflexed uterus.

I was rigid and completely motionless as the probe took pictures of my insides. I don’t remember the face of the technician. It was an older female, but I don’t think I made eye contact with her during our thirty minutes together. We didn’t speak. I counted the ceiling tiles above me as many times as I could, and then I counted the tiny holes in the design of each tile until the probe was removed.

Afterwards, I got dressed and was moved to a non-ultrasound patient room. The doctor I’d seen during my last visit came in and began speaking quickly about what the ultrasounds showed. I could tell she’d rushed in from just finishing a surgery or delivering a baby. She was wearing OR scrubs and still had imprints on her face from a hair cap and mask.

She said the ultrasound revealed that my ovaries and tubes looked healthy. Although my uterus was in the shape of a back flip, that shouldn’t affect my ability to get pregnant. The blood tests done during my previous visit all returned with normal results. She wants to continue with the diagnosis of endometriosis. I might have heard the word laparoscopy. I heard keep trying. I heard ovulation prediction kit. I heard stay optimistic!

This may sound thoughtless, but in some twisted way, I wish that the testing would’ve found something more conclusive, even horrendous. Something like, “There are cysts all over the place; it’s a complete mess in there. You actually don’t even have ovaries. There’s absolutely no way you will get pregnant, ever.” But what I got was: “This is infertility and, likely, endometriosis. But you’re totally healthy and you’ll probably get pregnant naturally within the next six months if you could just relax.”

The doctor left the room with the instruction to make a six-month follow-up.

On my way out of the office, the secretary scheduling my follow-up asked, “So how far along are you?”
“Excuse me?” I pleaded.
“I see you had an ultrasound done today. I assume that was to see your baby?”

It was not.

I exited the clinic without making another appointment.

Liv – Authentically

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