Following a link on my friend Allison's blog, I came across this delightful blog. Wow, are those people bitter, or what? This particular post was my favorite:
I had an experience that I will remember for the rest of my life yesterday. I am an ultrasound student and an currently doing a rotation at NYU Hospital. Yesterday we were ordered to do a gallbladder scan on a woman in labor. We went up to her room and the first thing I see is her hairy twat sticking out of the covers with a catheter coming out of it-GROSS. She was in the early stages of labor and her stomach looked like there were like 7 fleshloaves in there. She mentioned that she was having identical twins-whoop-de-fucking-doo, like I give a shit, lady. While we scanned her, she was crying and screaming for God to help her and squirming all over the fucking place. It was very traumatic for me to watch. I couldn't wait to get out of there! As soon as we left, I said to my instructor Denise-who is CF herself, (yay!)"Why the fuck would anyone want to do that to themselves??!!! She should've used one of these" and pulled out a condom-like device used to cover ultrasound probes which are inserted into the vagina and put it over three of my fingers. She cracked up laughing and said "Really!!" I want my tubal NOW!!
I'm just speechless. Can you imagine this "ultrasound student" caring for anyone? Especially a pregnant woman? What exactly did she think she would be doing as an ultrasound technician? The very idea of this person being a health-care provider of any kind gives me a serious case of the heebie-jeebies.
I keep thinking back to what happened when I was pregnant a couple of years ago. On the day I went for my CVS (genetic diagnostic test) I was supposed to be 10 weeks pregnant. The technician began the ultrasound, and then her face got very still.
"How far along are you?" she asked.
"Ten and a half weeks," I said.
"I'm going to go get the doctor."
And you can imagine what I did next. Two years or so before, Michael and I ended a pregnancy due to a genetic abnormality, and I was convinced it was happening again. What our baby had was not something heritable, so I lay in the bed crying and raging at what felt like miserable luck. When the doctor came in he told us, gently, that the baby was only sizing at 9 weeks. I insisted that that wasn't possible. I knew the date of my last menstrual period, and moreover, we had had an ultrasound more than two weeks before that had showed an 8.5-week-old fetus. That, apparently, was the problem. No growth between the two ultrasounds. Or very little growth. I browbeat the doctor into telling me what he suspected -- trisomy 18 or 13, the really ugly ones. Fatal. Horrible. I browbeat him into giving me a number. How sure was he? 99%.
We scheduled another ultrasound for a week later, and an abortion for the day after that with the same doctor who had cared for us two years before (a prince among men who should be deified). And then we went home to cry.
It was like reliving a nightmare, but at least this time I couldn't feel the baby kick.
It was Rosh HaShana a few days later. I'm not a religious person, but after I married Michael I started accompanying him to High Holiday services. We go now to this lovely congregation called Chochmat HaLev. Very alternative, lots of singing, etc. We were holding hands, crying in shul, when I suddenly felt the most amazing thing. I felt warm, confident, sure. I knew the baby was fine. I whispered to Michael, "The baby is okay." He gave me a pitying glance and squeezed my hand. "Honey," he said, "Don't do this to yourself. We need to accept what’s happening." I shook my head, and smiled one of those scary, beatific smiles that the Jehovah's Witnesses always give you when you turn them away from your door. "No," I said. "I know the baby is okay. I know."
For the rest of the day we had this conversation again and again. And let me make something really clear. I am the pessimist in this relationship. I'm the one who knows for sure that everything sucks, that everything will continue to suck, and that we just need to deal with the horror, the horror. Michael is the optimist. He's always singing a happy song, counting his blessings, tra la la. Finally, at the end of the day, he looked at me and said, "Well, if the eternal pessimist finally has an optimistic moment, she should be trusted." Then he went on the web and input the words "delayed ovulation" and jetlag. You see, we'd traveled home from Italy that month. Low and behold, he got thousands of hits.
I called the woman who had done the first ultrasound, the lovely and warmhearted nurse practitioner at my doctor's office. I asked if that first test could have sized the baby too big. If it was possible that when I'd gone to see her I was only 7 weeks pregnant, instead of 8.5. "Sure," she said. "That machine is often off. I usually don't even use it to measure, but since it agreed with the date of your last menstrual period, I figured it was probably right."
"Okay, " I said. "Is this scenario just too unlikely? Maybe I ovulated late because I had jetlag, and then your machine sized me too big? So the baby is fine, he's just younger than we all thought?"
"Anything is possible," she said.
For the next few days I was content. Happy. When we went back to the genetic diagnostician, they greeted us with the special sad faces they reserve for people whose babies are doomed, but we just smiled. I was all chirpy and sweet, laughing even. The ultrasound tech said, "Don't even take off your clothes, just get up on this table right now so we can see what's going on with this baby."
Perfect growth. And we found out a week later, that he had perfect genes to go with that perfect growth. That was Abraham. He's got a weak chin, and one eyebrow, but as far as I know they didn't test for that. He’s adorable, and sharp as a tack, and just the most perfect child ever. In my unbiased opinion.
If the ultrasound technician had been that Julie, I can only imagine how her cold and miserable demeanor would have made me feel. But I had a warm and lovely woman, instead. Thank God.