Had my second scan yesterday with an ultrasound tech I’d never met before as I think everyone I knew had the day off due to the July 4th holidays. Little did I know I was about to be emotionally blindsided.
Let me be clear: she wasn’t mean, she wasn’t brusk, she wasn’t rude.
Nonchalant is a tough one to counter given the complete lack of control and lack of specific medical knowledge I have concerning this very pivotal quest that I’m on.
I get that nonchalant can mean “feeling or appearing calm and relaxed.” That’s fine. I want that from my practitioner.
However, there’s the dark-side of nonchalant: there’s the indifferent side.
First she acted surprised that I asked for the measurements (so I could compare them to my first scan) and made a point of oh-um-well-umming her way into rattling off the numbers. She rounded them all to the closest full number – my regular gal gives me the decimal points (which maybe is something special – I don’t know – I’m not the one who went to school for this shit). But, in rounding them to the closest number it really looked like there’d been very little progress. I asked about this and she just shrugged. SHE SHRUGGED. She then said something to the effect “well, they’re small but they did grow a little.” I don’t know, I was still having a what-the-what moment over the shrug.
And then, the coup-de-grace: I inquired as to why there was one less follicle than before and she kind of make that psscht mouth-sound thing that’s the equivalent of “fugittaboutit.”
A shrug AND a psscht?
I need you to know that I’m a grown-up. I’ve been through my share of crap in life and come out the other side. I don’t need my hand held. I don’t need my hair stroked like I was a small child. I don’t need you to bring over a tuna-noodle casserole.
But from the gal interpreting my ultrasound results mid-IVF cycle, I do need for her to clue in to the fact that I am the medically naïve one in this scenario and therefore: deliver the news with a bit of grace.
I have half a mind to send her a card that reads:
Empathy: the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner; also : the capacity for this
A cross-stitch sampler for the wall would be better, but why give her that kind of time. I’ll likely say something to The Russian’s Right Hand, not to rat anyone out, but hey maybe this gal could learn a little something.
I left the office confused and discouraged, not knowing if any of this was working or if there was any point.
In the car, I let myself be upset for awhile (who doesn’t love a good car cry?) and then had to get to work. Luckily, I’ve been teaching improv to kids these past few weeks and they are masters at making me laugh. On my way into the theater, I talked to my husband who was as usual understanding, patient and honest. He talked me out of my tears and had me laughing, and in the end reminded me that I’ll likely meet other folks who are not as hip to my “keep hope alive” mojo as I’d like them to be. He also said that I shouldn’t be a victim in this and that we have to be empowered as patients. This is but a bump in the road.
Essentially: buck up little camper and soldier on.
I of course thought of Coach Taylor from Friday Night Lights, because I’m likely always going to think of something from tv or film. He always told his team: Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can’t Lose.
I just have to forget about that ultrasound tech, keep my eye on the prize, keep hope in my heart, and in doing so, I can’t lose.
I also need to keep shooting myself full of hormones, eating right, and watching terrible(fun) movies.
But mostly, I need to keep being a brave little soldier.