Praise the Lord! I had my appointment with my "second choice," "at-least-they-accept-self-pay" doctor yesterday. Knock my socks off!! The new office building had been designed with women in mind. It is the Salem WOMEN'S Clinic after all. There was beautiful wood work on the walls, pillars, a fancy coved ceiling with stain glass inset, a built in little play house for the kids, and lovely music playing. That was a great first impression. Then the actual exam room was like a mini hotel room. Instead of the normal doctor's table/bed thing they had a chaise lounge and antique furniture. Nice. The physicians assistant I met with was easy to talk to and patient with me as I occasionally redirected the girls. Mia was climbing all over trying to get the best view of what she was writing down. The P.A. was thorough in her questionnaire and, despite the fact that they know I'll only be there for two visits, I got a ton of free stuff!! A diaper bag, free samples, etc. When she was asking me about the stressors in my life I was a little embarrassed by all the "high" answers I had. "How would you describe the level of stress in your living environment? Low, moderate, or high?" HIGH!! "How is the stress in your relationships with friends?" "Uh, I'm having to say goodbye to all of them!! High stress!" "Do you have any big changes coming?" So, I got to tell her about buying a Christian camp and following God's leading. Well, I have to give her credit, she was reading from a standard form they always use and finally she just started nodding and smiling at me after each question. Ya, it's an intense time, but most of the time I still feel pretty peaceful. I just can't look too much at the whole picture. I'm also under strict instructions to tell people when I'm hitting the wall emotionally. That's a big remedy for me in the battle against depression and anxiety.
Next she asked me about my visit with my previous doctor to find out what tests she had already done. Nada!! I told her the story and that I felt God was severing those ties because He wants me to move on. She nodded.
So, the next part of intake was reviewing previous pregnancies and deliveries. We start right off with Faith of course. I told her again how we chose to carry her to full term and how God still uses her life to bless other people including our kids. She looked at me and said, "I'm a Christian, too, and we had a baby that was born a month early and lived for 3 months." She shared with me how his little life was used for God's glory as well. There is a special bond between people who've walked the same road. That time was a blessing.
Then it was time to hear the heart beat. There was so much tension as she searched around for that tiny heart. I kept hearing my heart beat, it's slower and louder, then all the general body noises it picks up. Then finally, faintly at first, we hear it, that fast little heart beat. Then she readjusts and there it is, so strong and steady. Music to my ears. Had the girls not been there I'd have let my guard down and cried. It was beautiful. This is my fifth time hearing that precious sound and it's never been less of a miracle. I tried to help the girls understand what they were hearing but I'm not sure they did.
The girls did really well considering how much waiting was involved. It was a little awkward when I had to pee in a cup. On one hand I didn't want the girls in there because I don't want them copying me or sharing the experience with their friends. On the other hand, what am I gonna do with them. So, in they came, and as they stood wide eyed, I explained, "Do not try this at home!" In fact it was extra special because I had to collect one "sample" then stop mid-stream and collect another in a different cup. Phew! Talk about stressful.
Then they got to watch me get my blood drawn, 9 viles full. Thankfully only one poke. I was surprised by brave little Mia's sickened face. When the doctor asked if she'd like to take blood when she grows up she definitively said, "NO!" Sierra didn't really know what was going on but they were both interested in my bandaid and owie after it was all said and done.
The whole visit took about 2 hours and was pushing into lunch time. Since the parking situation is so bad over there we had walked to the appointment and needed to walk home, so I decided we would stop by the snack bar for some sustenance on the way out. The girls each got Doritos and I had a scone. Then we made the trek back home through beautiful Bush Park. I kept thinking what a wonderful experience for the girls to hear their baby brother or sister's heartbeat. They must really feel special about that.
"So," I asked them, "What was your favorite part of my Dr.'s appointment?" "The Dorito's!" they shouted. The Dorito's! After all that, they liked the junk food the best. "Well, I liked watching you try to go potty in the cup" Mia followed up. Great, glad I could provide that experience for you. Then again at bed time, when I asked them what their highs and lows were for the day, sure enough, Mia mentioned the cup thing again. Well, at least she learned something about the health care system.
The whole experience was really a testimony to me of how well God can take care of me. I feel much more confident that I will find someone wonderful to deliver this baby in Washington.