The worst way, or at least one of the worst ways that I can think of, to spend your Monday is in the hospital, with your wife, who hasn’t eaten in 21 hours, waiting for a procedure to remove the remnants of your baby from her womb – strangely called a ‘missed abortion’ .
Now, we thought this would be preferable to the last time, when we took Misopro…something and tried the ‘less invasive’ at home method for removing the lining of the uterus and… well, and everything else. That was horrible. Traumatic. Worse than I could have imagined.
We decided this time that repeating that experience would be too much. Maybe trying the hospital route, where the blood and uncertainty would be in the hands of professionals. Given that we ended up going to emerg anyways, due to unexpectedly heavy bleeding and some concern about how things were going, being at the hospital already would have seemed like a respite.
Well, here I am. Waiting in the hospital waiting area. “NO FOOD OR DRINK IN THIS AREA. PLEASE.”
Let’s start there.
Let’s reassert: my wife has already suffered a miscarriage. The people who work here know that. We told staff, when we arrived, that she is hypoglycemic.
No food after midnight. Arrive at noon. Twelve hours, no food. Several blood sugar checks. We are now clocking 21 hours with no food, calculating that she ate last yesterday evening at about 10, knowing she’d be going so many hours.
The lukewarm concern from staff is hard to stomach, even when you’d swallow just about anything. In solidarity I’ve stayed with her, stepping out for a quick chai latte and a cookie, feeling shitty with guilt.
Whatever goes on behind the scene has some pretty blatant issues: the clinic called the hospital to get us in for an appointment (because you aren’t supposed to wait too long if the miscarriage doesn’t exit the body on it’s own). We are (she is) what I’ve come to understand is an “ Add On” . Meaning she is ‘added on’ to the scheduled surgeries and will get fit in. That seems like the kind of thing you’d want to tell someone.
Make it known, somehow, that the 16 imagined hours of waiting, might actually be closer to 18, 20 … 21.
It seems ‘insensitive’ a friend texted to us. Seriously.
I’m writing because I’m nervous. I’ve seen the same loop of CP24 News highlights 15 or 16 times. 3 kids were left in a hot car in a parking lot. The antenna on the Trump
tower is wobbling and has caused multiple streets to be preemptively cordoned off for safety. A man tumbles out of a moving vehicle on the highway. Justin Bieber cries (and has a new haircut) at the VMAs.
I’m nervous. I kissed her before they took her in for anesthesia. I heard the nurse (Neil) singing ‘Cheerleader’ under his breath. We have been informed of the risks. We already know what kind of thin crust pizza we will order when we know what time we can get the fuck out of here.
We watched so many names (coded: first two surname initials, birth year… some more numbers) paired with surgeons move from various states of ‘intake’ ‘recovery’ ‘surgery’. Our name didn’t even appear on the electronic chart until 7 pm. It’s 7:45. 7:44 actually. Everyone. Literally EVERYONE is gone, but us. Fewer and fewer nurses were around to implore with our eyes for some answer about how long it would be. The other Add Ons were taken in. Are recovering.
And we can’t change any of this. So now I wait. I am thankful that I’m in Canada. I keep hearing, as our elections unfold, that Canada, canaDA, CAnaDA… is all kinds of things. Right now, I’m happy it’s not America and I’m not wondering if my private health care, or lack of it, will pay for this. But I’m also noticing that the 3 times I’ve come to this hospital, it has been SUCH a long wait. Once, I was being a tough baby, with my ankle injury, in the middle of the night. Once I was watching my wife bleed excessively through a scary amount of pads, as some moronically chilly nurse checked her Facebook and told us in a dumb voice that she also used the clinic we had used… before the miscarriage. And then sat in a room, waiting to hear what was going on and to be seen by one of the too few doctors on call.
Now I’m taking out my frustration on a keyboard.
This is what it’s like for me. For Allia, she slept poorly. She got up and ate nothing. Can’t chew gum. Can’t even rinse her mouth out with water. She got herself into the car. She listened patiently to me while I grumbled about the lack of information from the nurses. She bore the long long waiting patiently. She watched old episodes of something on her laptop.
I’m so nervous. My amazing, brave wife is in a surgical room, having a procedure the doctor told us she has performed hundreds of thousands of times. But I love her. So I worry. Naturally. It’s hard, with our luck lately, to be brazenly optimistic.
By the time I post this, I’ll be wrong. We’ll be fed. Pizza. We will be back to our usual happy, looking forward-ness.
But for now, she has to be put under, ten seconds to sleepiness, to have a tool scrape the placenta out, which rarely (less than one percent of the time) can tear internally. It’s 7:51. And all I want is for someone to pop their head around the corner and tell me to come on in. And to order some pizza. And to take her home. And that we’re going to be okay.
ps. They don’t tell you until after that you can’t eat pizza.