Monday, July 27, 2009

The new doctor

Early in the second trimester, we did actually find a new doctor who had privileges at the hospital we wanted. The practice actually had 7 or 8 doctors, but a couple were specifically recommended. I made an appointment with one and we “interviewed” her and asked about the practice / our options. One thing that I really wanted was I preferred to have a female doctor. This practice was mostly female, but there were a couple of male doctors. As the clock was ticking and we needed to find someone decent, I decided to acknowledge and move on and take my chances. I figured I could schedule my consults with the women and if it happened to be one of the men who actually delivered the baby – well, like I’d care at that moment. I doubted I’d have a preference on man, woman or gorilla then!

By the way, I know many of you reading this are thinking – what’s your problem? Why can’t it be a male doctor? Are you that uptight? And the answer is – yes, yes I am that uptight. Honestly, I can’t give you more than that. I could say it’s just a matter of preference and in an non-emergent situation, what does it really matter? I’m not so crazy that I’d refuse to have a male ob/gyn if I was in urgent need of a doctor – I, in fact, HAVE had gone to men in emergency cases and it’s been just fine. (I’ve gone to male GPs and dermatologists and whatever else – this isn’t a feminism thing.) But if the choice is there, I’d prefer a female. Sure, in part it’s because she shares the parts and has some better potential inkling towards what I’m experiencing, but really if you want to get to the heart of it – yes, it’s because I’m uptight. And I figure when the choice is there, why not be more comfortable? I mean, there’s nothing whatsoever comfortable about late pregnancy, so why not take what you can when you can. So now that we’ve cleared that one up –

She told me that their practice GENERALLY liked you to see all doctors, but it wasn’t a requirement – as long as I understood that it might be a man who actually delivered the baby. Yes, I’ve got it. OK, we’re good.

As they preferred me to see all doctors, I figured I could see the male doctors in my earlier appointments that didn’t include a pelvic exam – I just checked what would be done each time before coming in. But, of course, this backfired once. No pelvic exam was scheduled, but they decided that they wanted a pap smear. Now, as an aside, I wanted to push back on getting this done regardless because I’d had one at my last doctor and didn’t want to do a test I wasn’t sure my insurance would cover. But – you know I figure it’s bad enough to have to meet so many women for the first time with your pants off, must I meet men that way too?

The doctor came in to talk to me about this – agreeing that I didn’t have to do the pelvic exam (as I’d had one already / insurance / etc.), but still going on about how I should see all the doctors and he might be the one to deliver our munchkin. We had some back and forth on semantics (you really have to see all the doctors. Me – but the other doctor said. Him – no, that’s what I said too. You don’t have to, but you should. … yeah, whatever) and all the while he was talking I noticed his verbal ticks. The largest and most annoying was his dragged out pronunciation of the word “well” – “Weeeeeeellllll” – and he used it to preface so many answers! He was like a Seinfeld character. Driving home, I told Dan that after all that I was sure this man would be delivering our baby – “weeeeeellllll, you’re 8 centimeters dilated.” By the end of pushing (when he said “weeelllll, she’s coming out), I was pretty sure I’d ‘accidentally’ kick him in the head…

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