Monday, 25 January 2010

The Good Doctor, the Madwife and My Second Home

I feel like the hospital has become my second home. And I like my home better. On the way to my daily monitoring appointments, Chris and I scheme about what £5 purchase we can make in the Sainsburys (big supermarket for those in the US) next to the hospital in order to get our £2 parking lot fee refunded.

But then you’re spending £5 rather than £2, you ask? My math skills haven’t totally gone out the window (they were there to start with but never mind) – we decided to pare down our weekly shop so we could continue our purchases throughout the week and not throw away £2 a day on parking fees. You can see we put a lot of thought into this; our days are all too exciting.

Why do we park in Sainsburys in the first place? It’s impossible to get parked in the hospital lot and the minimum, non-refundable fee is £2 for a space. I think it’s out of order, but local government loves pay-and-display (i.e. metered parking) and there’s no break for the sick, stressed or weary.

We chose daily monitoring, however, so who am I to complain? (Even though I just did). But anyway...

The little lady appears to be thriving from her daily monitoring “trace.” Over the weekend when we were monitored on the labor ward, one of the resident doctors, aka the good doctor, decided to perform a 3D scan (sonogram) for us as a spur of the moment thing. He confirmed that all looked well with baby, had a thorough chat about our decision to hold off on induction for now, and also referred me for a full growth scan in radiology, which I was originally told was not an option. I had that second scan today.  It confirmed that the little lady is active, a healthy size with normal placenta flow and amniotic fluid levels.

Knowing that she is thriving supports our decision that nature will take its course when she's ready. I’m more uncomfortable by the day, I have lots of pressure down there, I have frequent Braxton Hicks – all signs things are moving in the right direction. Still, with each day that goes by I am conscious that I don't want to leave her in there too long.... I am booked to meet my consultant doctor for the first time tomorrow (the attending of the good doctor that I saw over the weekend), so it will be interesting to see what he says after seeing me, the scans and baby’s trace.

The good doctor again showed me that not all doctors are keen to push a strictly medical policy route. I am impressed with this aspect of my pre-natal care, as I suspected I would face more push back for policy’s sake. I haven’t. Perhaps many wouldn’t ask for monitoring in the first place, but I have, and I’m grateful that I've been supported and reviewed as an individual case.

The madwife (that’s how she introduced herself to us – haha, not really that funny) proved the one fly in the ointment of my waiting game of late. Buxom and matronly, she busted into my appointment room and interrupted my scan by the good doctor by spouting off a number of frightening statistics about post-date stillborns, crystallized placentas and over-baked babies. I may be hormonal and emotional but her bedside manner really left a lot to be desired.

Hello woman, you just don’t say that! The real kicker is I’m not even sure why she came into my appointment room in the first place since she left after this diatribe of gloom and never returned. She may have been following up for another midwife who took baby’s trace earlier – I’m not sure.

I’ve read up on post-date risks and the other midwives and doctors I’ve seen of late have discussed them with me. I may stick to my guns but I’m all ears to the medical professionals when they speak objectively and relevantly as they’ve all done but for this tactless scare-mongering madwife.

I bit my tongue during her speech but it was pretty off-putting. Its best that I didn’t see her again as I’m not sure my pregnancy hormones would have remained at bay for one more dose of her medicine!
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