I’ve been reading posts from the blog Adventures of a Labor Nurse for a while now and I read this one here a while ago. The posts I’ve read are always from the care givers point of view and they always get me wondering about my very own OBGYN, Kirsten.
I have been her patient since 2011. I wasn’t impressed with the way she kept us waiting for forty minutes for our first appointment. I thought she looked unprofessional with her wet hair slicked back and a half-hearted apology given to me. I was even more frustrated when I was talking and she answered her phone immediately without acknowledging me first.
However, I was told by my trusted GP that she was one of the best so I went along with the initial instructions of completing scans, blood tests etc.
When I got pregnant with Zoe shortly after our first meeting, I discovered it the day before I was supposed to get my tubes checked. A complete shock but one where I thought I could easily slip into being cared for by Kirsten as a pregnant patient. When I went back to see her she made jokes about me not needing her help afterall and explained what we would do now, like sending me for a dating scan. She was so different from that first meeting, more at ease, and I instantly liked her.
As my journey continued with her, and I inevitably spent more time in her office, I came to realise the hours she puts in.
I laboured quickly with Little Man but had had meconium in my broken waters, as my anxiety sky rocketed Kirsten couldn’t be reached but when she was her initial advice was that she would come and see me at 7am. I looked at the clock thinking it was only a few more hours. Yet when the midwife saw my contractions getting closer she called again and the next thing I knew I was being prepped for surgery. Kirsten had made the call and was coming in hours before she said she would. When she arrived at around 5:30am she looked like she hadn’t even been woken before her alarm. I pleaded with her to deliver my baby safely and although I was trying to remain composed I know my eyes showed how truly scared I was. She never once wavered in her professionalism.
The calm demeanor she has always exhibited, the multiple yet straight talking ways she has told me that I was having a miscarriage and when I broke down in her office after losing Peanut last year I never once saw her break. She calmly handed me the box of tissues and compassionately sat with me as I quietly cried.
It has taken me a while to register what she may have gone through the night before our first meeting. How she may have been desperately trying to give a family what they have always wanted and been monitoring a labouring patient who has been with her for years and has had many losses during that time. How she might have even delivered a sleeping baby…
Yes she has a job to do but I’m sure such scenarios are ones she wishes she never has to deal with. I think about a particular morning where she called to give me my blood test results and advised that the HCG (pregnancy hormone) level was too low. I would miscarry and to let it happen, there was nothing else she could do. I wonder if I was her first call of the day and what she thought when she saw my blood results. I wonder if she had to compose herself before picking up the phone and how she actually managed to make that call to give the worst news imaginable to someone but remain so calm.
I wonder if she knows how eternally thankful I am to her because she gave me Little Man. I guess sometimes words are never enough to convey what’s in your heart.
Until next time,