Friday, 27 June 2008


First up, the scan went well, everything is growing at the correct rate, internal organs developing nicely, heart going like the clappers (a good thing, we're told) and currently weighing in a respectable 2 pounds and 11 ounces.

The appointment was at 16.10 and we arrived early because, as well as being perhaps the world's worst designed car park where the majority of drivers are forced to get out of theirs cars to insert their exit ticket, there is also normally a twenty minute queue to get into it.

With all of our scans and visits to date I've been impressed with the efficiency of the service and we've only ever waited long enough to read one or two articles in Mother and Baby. Yesterday I was even a little disapointed to be called through as I was only half way through an interesting article on flat head syndrome, a remarkably common complaint caused by babies spending too much time on their backs. Apparently they should sleep on their backs and play on their tummies to avoid it - you have been warned.

To back up, Clare originally had an appointment for next Monday with our specialist obstetrician as well as our scan yesterday. She received a call to say that there was no point in coming in twice and we could do the two at once. What a good idea, I thought, almost business-like to be so efficient. I suppose it had to be too good to be true.

After the initial scan we were deposited back in the original waiting room and then ushered to another about 20 minutes later. I read the Guildford magazine from Winter and then Summer 08, more Mother and Baby and then Country Living before I realised that I'd past my patience threshold without noticing. Clare could see me twitching and looking around for somone to shout out - which is something I used to do a lot in such situations and placated me on a number of times during the next half an hour of no progress. Eventually after an hour of waiting we were asked to go into room to the side of the waiting area. We sat in there for another twenty minutes and I started to become a pain for Clare. She was sitting on the edge of the bed and I'd found the table goes up, table goes down foot pump and although I found it hilarious, Clare found it childish and before long I was even annoying myself.

As I've mentioned before on here, I am trying to be nicer, calmer and more patient but I'm really struggling with the last one so eventually I charged off looking for a row. I didn't have far to go. I found an officious lady who was happy to explain that they were very busy to which I replied 'me too, that's why I turn up to appointments on time'. I went on to explain that we only had enough money for the car park's lowest charge which would be doubling very soon and that we had to be elsewhere not long after, however in this environment there is no customer and therefore noone feels the need to salvage a relationship where the complainant is there because they have to be and would really rather be at home watching the semi-final. Weird how a hospital is the polar opposite of a business yet in the majority of cases manages to satisfy its audience in much the same way.

Anyway we finally got some attention in the large shape of Miss Hutt's locom, who was busily trying to ask questions that we hadn't already been asked in the hope of buying some time until Miss Hutt became free. Then she apologised again and disappeared. 10 minutes later Miss Hutt arrived. Hooray.

Her opening words were 'I'm a little confused, you're supposed to be here on Monday!'

If Miss Hutt wasn't one of earth's most wonderful humans with a bedside manner which would make Florence Nightingale seem like Charles Manson, I think my head would have imploded. Right there on the bouncy table. She has a way of explaining things to Clare with her Spanish accent in perfect English that makes everything o.k again. She talks very closely to Clare but not in a personal-space-invasion way and not in a patronising way; it's a skill which cannot be learnt and lots of people try hard but never acheive it like she does. I hope she has children of her own but her age combined with her 'Miss' status and her vocation could suggest otherwise which would be a shame.

Anyway it took the wind out of my sails and I walked away almost frustrated that I wasn't angry anymore! The clock was at 6pm as we approached the parking ticket machine and queued as the other one was out of order (natch) and I was half enjoying the prospect of having a row at the front desk if the machine told me we'd slipped into the £4 bracket by a few minutes. I was almost disappointed when I saw the £2 fee but glad to pay up and negotiate the exit barrier.

There we are then.

No comments: