Smacking on her gum and swiveling back and forth in her chair, the receptionist click clacked on her keyboard with her palm tree painted finger nails after making me spell out my name twice.
- Oh? How do you spell that again? O-H, you said? I don't see no O-H in here. When'd you make your appointment?
- Just last night. I called in because I was bleeding, and the nurse on the phone told me to come in this morning at 9:45.
- Well, I don't see no O-H here. Have a seat.
We sat and we sat and we sat. After forty minutes of doctors and technicians passing back and forth in the hallway, with not even a glance in our direction, looking officious and preoccupied, a young asian woman in green garbs called my name. As she walked us to the ultrasound room, she smiled and introduced herself. And I turned to her, as if to make a confession, and burst out, I lost my baby, and my eyes exploded into tears. I presented the photo of the ultrasound we had taken just two weeks earlier, of the little creature that had a heartbeat, as if to plead my case.
She probed, and we saw the image of the empty uterus and of the void where "the gestation had taken place." Having been told what we already knew, it now became a reality because someone else now knew it to be true and told us so.
After I dressed, we slowly walked to the elevator, and with a start, I realized that we had left the photo behind. Jeff, after asking if I really wanted to keep it, ran back to get it.
While waiting for the D&C, we walked to AG Ferrari down the street for lunch but really to kill time. I ordered a prosciutto sandwich, and I bit through the focaccia, mozzarella, capers, organic greens until I reached the prosciutto and slowly clamped my teeth through the thinly sliced pieces of ham. As I chewed, I felt the prosciutto fill the crevices between my teeth and dig into my gums, and I savored each bite, seeking compensation. I wanted to load my body with all that I had foregone, as if to say, there, I am getting something out of this.