Though this is the first clinic that my partner and I have visited, I’m calling it Clinic Three. It’s Clinic Three because I already referred to another clinic as Clinic One in a previous post, and because this clinic was my least favourite (of three) going in.
This was the one clinic that my doctor referred us to of her own volition. I had never heard of it, and was surprised to learn that it’s tucked away only a block from where I work. These are its major pros going in: the recommendation of my not-terrible doctor and the three minute travel time from my desk. Its major cons? I hate its website. I hate the faux pastel drawing of a round pregnant woman with long, flowing hair that serves as the backdrop to the main page. I hate the photo of the doctors: four older male doctors in white lab coats with half-smiles on their faces. I hate the 82 million references to “your husband”. I hate that the only reference to same-sex couples is buried in the FAQ section. I judge books by their covers, and I haven’t judged this one favourably.
The waiting room was fancy, but I suppose you can afford to be fancy if you’re a fertility clinic. We sat down on a long sofa, with magazines geared towards men on one side table, magazines geared toward women on the other. I would have flipped through GQ, but I hadn’t filled out the medical forms in advance. Oh, medical forms. Mine were fairly straightforward, with only a couple of tough questions. How long have you been trying to conceive (having unprotected intercourse)? Very different questions in our case, with very different answers. Please describe the cause(s) of your infertility, as you understand it. Well:
Partner’s form was a little trickier. We re-labeled it (as you can see from the new header!) but couldn’t do much about the content. Yes, she had to fill it out despite little/no plan to make a biological baby. No, she doesn’t sleep in a heated waterbed, but I don’t think it matters. We filled out these forms (taking a sneaky photo or two) to the sound of the receptionist yelling at patients over the phone. Okay, not screaming, but speaking loudly and impatiently. I was scared. I do not want to be that patient at the other end of the line. We were ushered into a room with a sharps container on the desk and a collage of babies on the wall. Babies that I assume that Clinic Three had aided in conceiving. The number of twins in that collage was concerning. The set of triplets even more so. The doctor we spoke to was a lovely woman who seemed pleased to be seeing a young person not yet gripped by fears of infertility. She cheerfully ran through a list of tests that they would run—bloodwork, ultrasound, saline ultrasound—and the trigger shot that would follow. I put in a vote against this last move, twins run in my family and I don’t want to trigger anything, in favour of natural cycle monitoring. I was beginning to think that my original negative impression and grumpiness post-forms would be swayed by the nice doctor, when she said that she wouldn’t be our doctor at all. That she just sees other people’s patients, and that we would have another doctor. He came in and introduced himself. He seemed pleasant, he smiled, he repeated what the first doctor had told us, he just wasn’t quite as nice. We were underwhelmed.
We aren’t sure about Clinic Three, but it really is just clinic number one. We have nothing to compare to, no idea what will come next. On to Clinic Two—coming up on Tuesday.