Pregnancy Week 25

pregnancy week 25

This was the week in which I was supposed to book a GP appointment as part of my “maternity care programme”. Actually, this was the week I was supposed to attend my GP appointment, so I suppose, looking back, I should have booked it weeks ago. Or, because my local doctor’s surgery requires approximately four months’ worth of notice to get anything done, I should preferably have booked it pre-Christmas. In all fairness, I did try and book one three weeks ago, but I got cut off and then lost interest. I tried again last week and they were doing some kind of training on a new lady and she couldn’t work the system, and I started to wish that I was stabbing out my own eyes with a biro rather than having to endure the conversation, so I said I’d ring back. Which I did, on Friday. Here’s how it went.**

Me: “Hello there!” [I seem to have adopted the most annoying old-person telephone voice, recently. I also say “bye bye now”, “okey dokey then” and “toodle-oo”.] “Would it be possible to book an appointment to see a doctor?”

Receptionist: “First appointment I have is in four weeks.”

Me: [Pause] “Right….it’s just that I have to have a maternity appointment, apparently. As part of my maternity care.”

Receptionist: “So you need a midwife appointment.”

Me: “Hmm. No, not a midwife, as I have all of my midwife appointments at the midwifery place that I was assigned to. They said I needed to book in with a GP.”

Receptionist: “Right. The first appointment I have is…hold on… is on the 24th March.”

Me: “That’s ages away! What if my leg was falling off?”

Receptionist: “Is your leg falling off?”

Me: “No, but you hear what I’m saying, surely?”

Receptionist: “If your leg is falling off then I’d suggest going straight to the hospital, not waiting for a GP to see you.”

Me: “My leg isn’t falling off, but my maternity notes say I have to see a GP around about now and if I wait a few more weeks it will be pointless, because I’ll have had my next midwife appointment.”

At this point in the conversation, I had a little re-think: why was I being instructed to see a GP? There was nothing wrong with me apart from the pregnancy total-brain-failure issues and my ever-aching ribs, so what did I really need to see a GP for? My notes didn’t arm me with any kind of helpful information, just “book a GP appointment”.

Me: “Do you know why I need to book a 25 week appointment?”

Receptionist: “No, why?”

Me: “No, I mean do you know why I need to book one? Is it normal?”

Receptionist: “Hold on, I’ll find out.”

[Listened to Coldplay for approximately one minute and ten seconds.]

Receptionist: “Is it a midwife appointment you want?”

Me: [Once I had finished chewing on my knuckle bones] “No, I have my midwife appointments up at the midwifery place. They said I needed to book a GP appointment.”

Receptionist: “Did they say why?”

Me: “No, it’s routine, apparently.”

Receptionist: “You needed to book it weeks ago, really, if it was routine. The next appointment is the 25th March…”

Me: “It was the 24th a minute ago!”

Receptionist: “That one has gone.”

Me: [weeps] “What if I had flu? Or a sore throat? It would be gone by the time I had an appointment!”

Receptionist: “Do you have flu or a sore throat?”

Me: “No, I have a cracking headache and an urge to hurt myself.”

Receptionist: “Try ringing at 8am tomorrow, we might have some cancellations come in.”

Me: “Righty ho. Bye bye now.”

Question of the week: what is this 25 week GP appointment? What magical services do they perform in it that the midwife can’t do? Do I need to be panic-dialing the surgery at 8am every morning to try and win a free slot, or am I OK to wait until my next midwife appointment on the 17th? I shall ring the midwife centre tomorrow and grill them on this matter, but in the meantime, hit me with your thoughts!

*written at 25 weeks and 6 days pregnant. I am clothed in Sweaty Betty (top is here) as I was going to attempt to do some yoga, but I went for lunch instead…

 **vaguely. I have embellished sections of the conversation so that you don’t have to die of boredom, as I almost did.

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