In my lifetime, I have been to doctors and hospitals several times. Actually I think I’ve been given more than a fair share of doctors and hospitals. But it’s not that I fall sick easily, I have a generally healthy body. I never missed days of school or work because of common illnesses. No common colds or chills or fevers or flu for me. Nah – I go for the big ones. I go bust my knee, and I do it again and again and again. Or I turn out to be infertile and I have to see one RE after another, again, and again, and again!
So the bottom line is, I’ve had a number of doctor visits, a number of surgeries, and a number of IVFs. But the patients at these clinics “appear” healthy.
At my orthopedic surgeon’s clinic, the other patients actually appear inspirational! Many have injured themselves playing some sport or doing some brave outdoor activity. Yes, there are the others that may have been in accidents, or the elderly that need help, but mostly orthopedic cases seem to be strapping healthy young cases.
At my RE’s office – again, patients that outwardly “appear” healthy. Yes, we’re all broken apart inside, and are sad, depressed, flustered, and yet hopeful, but on the outside we look “normal”.
The other day I had to go to our hospital’s radiology department for my mammogram. While I waited to be called in, just looking at the other patients there brought so many things into perspective for me. So many of the patients were visibly sick. There were tubes and pipes going into parts of their bodies, they were wheel chair bound, or they were wearing hats and scarves to cover their heads. My heart was in my mouth with pain and agony for each one of them.
Despite the pain that infertility has taken me through, physically my body is functional. It’s not being eaten up by a life threatening disease. My heart may be broken, but my body is not. It may not cooperate with me on a hormonal level, but it is still in my control on many other levels. I complain so much, while I actually have so much to be thankful for.
DH was in the car outside (he had driven with me because we had to head out somewhere together after my appointment). I was so shaken up that I called him and asked him to come sit with me while I waited.
We looked around and saw many elderly patients, accompanied by their adult children. DH came away with the thought that our parents are aging, and they live far away. Heaven forbid, what if they need us like this?
I feel selfish for coming away with the thoughts that I did come away with. I too saw the elderly people accompanied by their children. It struck me that tomorrow, that elderly person may be me. Who’s going to accompany me?
The few minutes in the waiting room of the lab brought things into perspective for me. I need to count my blessings more than I do. But at the same time, a possible glimpse into my future, and the possibility that it may be a very lonely future is scary.
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