Thursday, May 22, 2008

yet another reason why i'm probably not in the running for miss congeniality

SCENE: AN EXAMINATION ROOM. NICE NEW DOCTOR IS TAKING NIOBE'S MEDICAL HISTORY

Nice New Doctor: So, have you had any hospitalizations or surgeries?

Niobe: Let's see. Well, in 1989 . . . blah blah blah (lists hospitalizations and surgeries). And, um, in October 2006, I had a c-section.

Nice New Doctor: October 2006! That's when my daughter was born! You know, I've just recently come back to work. I'm only here part time, but it's been quite an adjustment for both of us. Luckily, we managed to find a daycare that we're very happy with. Do you work outside the home?

Niobe: (resisting urge to say: well, if you'd seen how my kitchen looked this morning you'd realize that I certainly don't do much work inside the home) Yes, I do.

Nice New Doctor: And who takes care of your baby while you're at work?

Niobe: Oh, I don't have a baby. Was it hard for you to arrange a part-time schedule?

FADE TO BLACK

45 comments:

Tash said...

This is evil, but I'm laughing. out. loud.

slouching mom said...

oh, you bad, bad girl. ;)

Amy said...

hehehe...I bet that shut the nice new doctor up...

Bon said...

snicker.

Lori said...

I can only imagine how that poor doctor is still puzzled over that one...

thirtysomething said...

heh.

My Reality said...

You know, I have the same c-section scar from ovarian cyst surgery, and a few people who have seen it in hospital settings have asked me how many kids I have. When I answer with none, I have never been pregnant, I get really odd looks. Fucking with people can be so much fun.

Jillian said...

It's not wrong that I find this so excellently funny is it? I wish I had the presence of mind to say stuff like that in such situations. Bravissmo!!

CLC said...

I wish I could have seen the doctor's face when you said that.

Beruriah said...

See I always spit out "3 pregnancies, the first a miscarriage, the second preterm labor, the baby died and...." I haven't had to answer that question recently. But I move on to the next topic as quickly as possible. Also socially awkward I suppose.

Magpie said...

It's a good thing I spilled the red wine earlier this evening, because it would be all over the keyboard now.

Becky said...

That made me laugh out loud : )

Just goes to show that doctor's sometimes don't know when to keep their mouths shut!!

Antigone said...

I wish I'd had the wit to respond appropriately when during an HSG, a few weeks after the stillbirth, the technician leaned over me and asked, "So do you have any kids?"

Julia said...

Chuckling. Uncontrollably.

But I am sure my kitchen can kick your kitchen's ass on the not much work inside the home part any day. Hm.. maybe I should go load the dishwasher now. Something tells me, though, it's much more likely to be blogs or sleep that win for my time this fine evening.

painted maypole said...

you can't fade to black without a good shot of the doctors face after that! ;) but I can't help but wonder (as I often do in TV shows and movies that end a scene in a place like that) what happened next. because something had to have happened.

wheelsonthebus said...

I am just surprised the doctor had time to talk to you.

Kymberli said...

Miss Congeniality, maybe not. Miss Most Likely to Elicit a Deer-in-Headlights Look, yes.

k@lakly said...

And so was it then that the doctor actually looked at your history or was it just the long awkward silence with lots of in depth stares at the floor?

Aurelia said...

See, now I'm dying to find out what happened AFTER fade to black....cause I know that she would have asked more.

She sounds like she needs a good smack, hope she learned something from this.

Awake said...

Oh Niobe.

Amelie said...

wow, Niobe.
I also love that comment about your kitchen, as I currently have to take care of mine before the visitors arrive...

niobe said...

K@lakly, Aurelia, Painted Maypole, Awake: Really, nothing much happened after the fade to black. There was a split second of silence and then we chatted about her part-time schedule and then she took the rest of my medical history.

I wasn't in the least upset and I don't think she did anything wrong. She was just being nice. I, however, was not.

christina(apronstrings) said...

i don't think that's mean. it was, sadly, suckily, honest.

calliope said...

heh.
what happened after the commercial?

doctors can be idiots often.

a- said...

(snicker)
Tsk. Tsk. Why must folks always relate things back to themselves through asking YOU questions? Who cares for the small talk anyway?

kate said...

I gotta admit to LOL!

Hannah said...

This comment really should have gone on your previous post I guess, but you are an enigma to me. Since last weekend I've been thinking about you often and wondering about you... you seemed so self-contained, and so thoughtful, and since I hadn't read you before I didn't know why.

As bits and pieces are being revealed to me through your posts this week I ache for the opportunity lost, to connect with you more.

I'm humbled by you.

Amanda said...

I'm sorry you found yourself in that situation. It's amazing how these sort of experiences spill over into completely unrelated situations. I hate being there.

Pamela Jeanne said...

What strikes me here is how ready I've become to receive the unexpected answer, but how reticent I am IRL, still, to provide it. I admire your honesty.

beagle said...

Nice new doctor made a really big ASSumption.

I'm sorry.

stat763 said...

Perfect reply, absolutely perfect.

Lisa b said...

Niobe I think she should have expressed some sort of sympathy. Something. Not responding in any way is inappropriate.
Did she not have your chart or a note from your previous doctor? I don't have any patience for these oversights. It is their job not to walk in and put their foot in their mouth. I think you were very nice in moving the conversation along.
My own doctor who knows my entire history and the fact that just before my daughter was born my friend's baby died does not know what to say to me when I tell her I am worried about things going wrong in my pregnancy. I think as medical professionals they deal with obstetrics they should be able to respond in a professional manner.
My daughter's pediatrician, part of the group who had cared for my friend's child who died, always says the right thing. It is partly about training, partly about common decency.

c. said...

Ha. I can't even imagine the look on her face.

Charlotte's Mama said...

Perfectly reasonable answer to a perfectly reasonable question. I can see her now, shuffling through papers, and blushing furiously outside the exam room after she said goodbye.

Dawn from the frozen north said...

Ah, that so reminds me of my Ob/gyn's nurse. I had miscarried but decided to go to my scheduled pre-natal appointment as it was only a week later. The nurse came into the exam room, "reading" my chart (which included my hospital report from the miscarriage on very top of the stack) and asked for a urine sample and my weight. I told her that I didn't think we needed to do this and she assured me that this is what happens at all pre-natal appointments. I asked her if she noticed in the file she was reading that the babies were all dead. Was I being mean? Maybe. Did I have to pee in a cup and weigh myself? Nope.

NotSoSage said...

I think you'd deserve the award for taking all that in stride.

JamieD said...

Sometimes it feels good (and is just plain fun) to be honest and not worry about making other people feel uncomfortable.

Kami said...

IMHO,you WERE being nice. What would have been a more appropriate answer?

If I were nice-knew-doctor I would have followed up with "Do you mind if I ask how that turned out?" And then said "I'm so sorry."

Smiling said...

ouch..

that is a pretty... um WOW fade to black moment.

Christine said...

i would love to have been a fly on the wall.

Ahuva Batya said...

Niobe, you approach things with so much grace and wit, with a dark twist. I'm sorry the doctor forced herself into such a corner, but you gave her a reality check I'm sure she'll remember.

thrice said...

Ouch.

Furrow said...

I know it's not cool to say so, but I almost feel a bit sorry for the doctor. If she is not in obstetrics and hasn't been conditioned to anticipate bad outcomes with pregnancies, she would not think to see this coming. I say ALMOST because I really am furious with doctors who have a complete history right in front of them (and they almost always make you fill it out before they'll see you) and then ask the same questions all over again. Perhaps she'll be more attentive next time, and thus, a better doctor to someone else.

niobe said...

Furrow: I completely agree with you. She really was just trying to be nice and it was because I felt sorry for her that I didn't make a big deal out of it and quickly changed the topic.

It's a huge HMO and I don't really expect any doctor to rummage through my voluminous records before asking me questions.

Dr. Grumbles said...

I personally get tired of medical staff asking how many times I have been pregnant, and then getting the follow-up, "Oh, so you have two children at home already?" or something similar.

Maybe someone could invent an alert sticker - a big neon warning in front of all charts, "Patient has had ___ pregnancies, with ___ leading to living children."