I was with a friend at a hospital in Bangalore recently. She is pregnant and was on her regular check up. She was alone and wanted me to accompany her. I am phobic towards hospital yet I decided to be with her that day.
It always surprises me that I should be phobic because I spent half my life in and around a hospital where my mother was a nurse.Gynaecs and their departments yet, scares the hell out of me. I would rather kiss an iguana than meet a gynaec but thats one place I visit a lot these days. I can't stand women with big tummies around and this particular day I tried pacifying myself that I would not get a full view of my own tummy when I become pregnant. I often fear that pregnant women would fall flat on their tummy and die and I would die in a similar fashion some day, its one of my worst nightmares. Such is the level of my phobia that I chatter non stop in a gynaec clinic.
Nature has been cruel enough to me having given me regular ovulatory dysfunction and I have been in and out of a gynaec clinic all my life. In fact I had done more HCG, pregnancy and ultrasound tests than my pregnant friend. Yet this visit was painful to me. My friend seemed excited and kept chattering about her new health tips and recipes for pregnant women. She was all charged up with doubts and a long list of questions for the doctor which started of with if waxing was safe in pregnancy to how long could she drive to work. Some of her questions did startle me and I felt we were in two different leagues suddenly. A new part of womanhood was being unfolded to me. It was definitely attractive.
At the entrance my friend told me the hospital had a warmth and she felt cool and less intimidated. I silently anticipated the moment I would step into the midst of all those pregnant women in few seconds. To add to my worry as soon as we stepped out of the elevator we saw posters on pregnant women eating strawberries and many more poses which I deciphered was to relax women and show them this was a nine month vacation. I paced around listening to excited women planning about future baby shoot. I soon realised I was the only idiot who had no clue of these facilities. Portfolios of new borns was part of luxurious packages hospitals offered these days. I called up WHO to ask him if he would let me have one and he said no as if he was refusing me a kitkat.
The doctor called us for the appointment after 1 hr of waiting. She told us we were the last patient and she had to leave. She asked my friend to report to her after two weeks and shooed of all her anxieties by asking her to stay cool. She focused more on me who was just there to support my friend. But the doc focussed on my weight, my plans for baby ( luring for the next customer I beleived). I took the name of her rival hospital, told her I was consulting a doc there and she backed off( this strategy works best with banks, insurance agents, mobile phone sales persons and doctors). We must have spoken to her for 5 minutes but the fees was 300 bucks.
My friend proceeded for her scan and I was asked to wait out. The door to the scan room had a wonderfully captivating sticker which read " Killing a girl child is wrong- we do not reveal the sex of the foetus". Before I could feel impressed I saw a certificate beautifully framed on the opposite wall which read " This hospital has been certified to perform medical termination of pregnancy". Paradoxical it seemed at the moment where one wall indicated blooming of life and the other the fact that it could be legally slaughtered.
We left soon after the scan and I felt a lot better outside the intimidating building. I could not stop thinking about a day I would be there soon. Perhaps I need a visit to the pediatric ward the next time to believe my efforts would bring forth sweet returns, and this could help me cope my gynaec phobia.