We had a marathon of a doctor appointment on Sunday. Since we’re supposed to be going to the doctor every two weeks now and it had been five weeks since our last appointment, I’m not surprised. Plus, it’s Egypt and anything can happen, right? Especially when your appointment is scheduled for 8:30 PM.
First we waited and waited and waited. And then we got called in, asked the doctor some questions, and I got put on the examination table.
Unfortunately both OB/GYNs were in that day and the other one had the only Doppler the clinic has. So after Dr. Tarek measured my fundal height and took my blood pressure he just covered up my stomach with the sheet and left me waiting on the table behind the curtain all alone while he chit-chatted with Andrew about our vacation and repeatedly called the nurses to nag about the Doppler.
I felt a little awkward and wasn’t sure if I was supposed to resurface or not, so I just stayed put. Pay no attention to the pregnant lady behind the curtain…it’s not like the appointment is for her, anyway.
Oh, wait, yes, yes it is.
Finally, Dr. Tarek came back to tell me that he was going to send us in to have an ultrasound, anyway, since it had been a while since the last one, so he didn’t need to find the heart beat since we’d see it beating on the ultrasound.
Also, he thought I needed blood drawn to test my hemoglobin levels so that I can get on an iron supplement if needed.
Also, I had +1 sugar in my urine and he wanted to know when I ate dinner. We had just eaten at Lucielle’s and I got a Fanta with my meal instead of water; he said that in that case, he wasn’t worried about the sugar.We’ll see in two weeks.
He wrote up some papers, handed them to the nurse and she ushered us back into the waiting room to wait while she made an appointment with the technician.
The ultrasound went well. Miriam appeared to be sleeping the whole time. She was covering her face with her hands and we couldn’t get her to move them, but we got a nice shot of the top of her head, which the technician printed out for us. I’m not sure why. It just looks like a big circle and isn’t really endearing…
She kept saying “Thank God” about everything, which were my sentiments, exactly.
“The brain looks fine, thank God, and there are no abnormalities that I can see in her organs, thank God. Her lungs are showing signs of maturity, thank God, so she’ll be ready to breathe when she’s born. She’s a normal size, thank God, completely average.”
Everything is still looking fine and we are indeed grateful for that. Having heard bad news at an ultrasound, we definitely agree with thanking God that our baby appears to be completely healthy.
After the ultrasound we had to wait again to see Dr. Tarek. We talked over the results with him, he wrote on our pregnancy card, and asked if we had any questions.
“Yes,” I said, “Do I need to take that hemoglobin test, or…”
He told me that he’d call me if I needed to start on a supplement, which didn’t exactly answer my question but is exactly how they work here. In the States if they tell you they are going to tell you the results of your test they call you regardless of whether the result is positive or negative. Here no news really is good news. If you don’t hear anything you can assume that nothing is wrong.
Or, like me, assume that something got lost.
We tried paying for our visit, but the receptionist kept asking me if I needed lab work done. I thought, because of Dr. Tarek’s answer to my question about the hemoglobin test, that maybe it was an extra test they would do on my urine…even though I was pretty sure they usually draw blood to test iron levels. Anyway, turns out I did need a lab test but they had lost my paperwork and hadn’t arranged for one yet.
So we were sent back to the waiting room once again. And then I had my blood drawn and got to watch as it was labeled "Nancy Hiss," thus the reason I'm worried no news means something has gotten lost. And then we paid for the appointment and went home. We didn’t get home until after 10:00 PM.
Patrick was about ready to send out a search and rescue party. At least we had taken Rachel with us so he was only home alone, not home with Rachel!
Anyway, we’re 33 weeks along now and Miriam is still alive and kicking, ever kicking. I was feeling pretty good in Israel, but now that we’re back in Cairo I’m always exhausted again…like I get out of bed after 10:00 AM, drag myself off the couch to make lunch, and then I’m all worn out and ready for naptime.
I think it’s a combination of the oppressive heat and poor air quality. That, or Cairo just brings out the worst in me.
And here are a few shots of the bump, for those who want to see.
The first is at the Sea of Galilee in Tiberias and the second is at Capernaum. They’re a week old already but I figure I’m about the same size still. I haven’t shattered any zippers lately, so…