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2007-08-09 - 2:06 p.m.

..a brief outlet for doctor's office complaints and general preggo anxieties....

So I had my next prenatal exam yesterday - the first with the OB/GYN who will deliver the baby. Err, well, she's different.

The thing is, I really love my other doctor. She's a relaxed hippy, really informative, and just a friendly, personable human being. We just get along, see eye to eye.

This new doctor is not unpleasant, but just very different.

First off, she kind of ignored K. (negative reinforcement, particularly after I virtually forced K to come to the appointment with me.) Secondly, she's extremely efficient and to the point. This is not really a bad thing, it's just that I kind of miss the more human side of my first doctor, who seemed to integrate stress and personal perception into her diagnosis of health.

The toughest thing was that there is a new sense of urgency with this doctor.

One of her first questions was, "You mean you haven't scheduled an ultrasound yet??" Ummm, NO. You don't do them in the office? How am I supposed to know this?? I'm new to the country. I'm new to the whole baby thing. I was counting on a just a little bit of guidance in this area, either from the doctors or from the scheduling staff at the front desk.

Which brings me to the scheduling staff at the front desk: The Schnauzers. (my other doctor referred to them as The Pit Bulls). If you looked in Webster's Dictionary under "unfriendly," you would find their names. Well, not all of them. One of the women is slowly warming up to me, and her replacement is a veritable happy pill compared to the third. The third lady is in serious need of a personality transplant. She's rude to everyone. K's strategy is to "nice" her to death. Everything is excellent!! and wonderful!! and brilliant!! After which, she warms up a little. But for this walking ice cube, warming up means to insult you less.

So in this instance, I came out and she gave me a little talking to about scheduling problems. Because we insisted on scheduling this ultrasound on such short notice we wouldn't get a CHOICE of dates. Ummm, hello? I still don't view this as MY FAULT if you don't inform me of the procedure!

As it is, we now won't get the ultrasound for two more weeks. In passing, the doctor said that we will not be able to determine the sex of the baby from this ultrasound, AND it's likely to be the only ultrasound that we will get. I wasn't quite able to get more information out of her about how, then, we might be determining the child's sex? I'd finally decided that this is something that I want to know, and now I leave the doctor's office with a whole bunch of unanswered questions about whether or not I'm even going to get the chance to learn the baby's sex...

My next anxiety coming out of this last appointment has to do with the so-called 'triple screen' - preliminary genetic testing recommended for women over 35, that helps to determine if there are any nervous system disorders or chances of Down Syndrome. I finished the last set of blood tests for this over a week ago, and the test results were not back yet. If the results are positive, then I need to - RATHER QUICKLY - schedule an amniocentesis. But the test results are not back yet.

This afternoon,following a whole other ultrasound scheduling incident, the Schnauzer Lady hung up on me before I could ask about the test results. I called back. She just said that the doctor was out of the office until Monday, and I should call back then. I tried to speak really quickly before she hung up again. She was SO aching to hang up. does this work with scheduling an amnio if the tests are positive?? This is kind of anxiety-provoking.

Side note - Schnauzer Woman just called again. She found the test results in another doctor's mailbox, and the tests were negative. That's good news (although she hung up before I could thank her). Still, I will call up the doc on monday to see exactly what the stats are on these tests...but I'll be resting a little more easily between now and then.

Well, the final problem is body weight. I've lost on the order of 8-10 pounds since I became pregnant. My previous doctor didn't care. She just said, hey - keep being healthy. Keep walking, keep eating well and normally. This new doctor told me that she wants me to gain no more than 10 pounds over the rest of my pregnancy. And if this becomes a problem we would consult with a dietician about keeping my weight down. Gulp.

Okay - so, no pressure THERE. And then one of her last comments was, "and if all works out then you will actually come out weighing LESS after the baby is born." HUH? I've always though of pregnancy as a time when one should think carefully about food intake, and make healthy, thoughtful choices. I've NEVER thought that pregnancy should be a time to DIET. And that's what this sounded like.

I don't deal well with diets - I've been doing just fine on my own, eating well, feeling well, feeling healthy and unconcerned. I just don't eat sweets. And then last night, all of a sudden, I craved a huge chocolate brownie with whipped cream. I'm convinced the craving was a psychological response to feeling pressured about weight control. I mean, ultimately it's no big deal. One lousy brownie. But it's just weird for someone who doesn't like sweets.

So, I've decided to give this doctor another shot at my next appointment. There were many aspects of her personality that I did like - although succinct and quick, she was mostly informative. Perhaps I just don't deal well with change when it comes to an anxiety-provoking issue like childbirth.... Perhaps she warms up upon further acquaintance, and perhaps she just doesn't deal well with husbands at the appointments. I am hoping that I have misconstrued her weight advice. In fact, I've decided that it is best to pretend that I didn't hear them. I was doing just fine on my own, and if I just continue with that route, perhaps I can avoid another absurd brownie incident (ick, did I ever feel sick after that - I'm really not good at eating sugar.).

And in the end, even if she isn't the perfect choice, maybe we'll just hire a doula to assist. So after airing all of this I feel better. All isn't lost, it just isn't perfect. And writing it through gives me a better sense of what I need to try to get out of the new doc next time. And we have options to improve. and furthermore, whatever it means, the tests were negative --> another step in the direction suggesting we have a healthy little critter on the way. There, all is okay again.

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