I am nervous. The butterflies in my stomach are flapping away while I sit nervously in my doctor’s office waiting for the results of my last exam. The pain in my abdomen has already subsided just as it does every month after causing me days of excruciating pain.
“Veronica, the doctor will see you now,” the nurse calls loudly, interrupting my thoughts.
My legs feel like rubber, but I find the strength to walk to the examination room to wait for the news that will forever be embedded in my memory.
My wedding is four months away. Andrew and I are madly in love and anxious to begin a new chapter in our lives. I tried on my wedding gown yesterday. There was no special reason; I just wanted to put it on. Wearing my wedding gown makes me feel special; it makes me feel like a princess.
“Good afternoon Kiddo,” calls in Dr. Horn after a quick knock on the exam room door. “How are you feeling today,” she continues.
Why does she always ask me the same question? “Obviously, I am not doing well if I am here!” I want to scream at her. “I’m nervous,” I say instead.
“That’s okay, we all get anxious when waiting for test results,” Dr. Horn replies.
I exhale loudly and say, “How bad is it?”
She begins speaking. All I hear are medical terms and jargon coming from her mouth. She might as well be speaking a foreign language. For some reason though, while Dr. Horn goes on and on about my condition I find my mind wandering. I am nineteen years old. I am getting married in four months to a wonderful man, and yet for some reason I am in my doctor’s office about to be told news that would devastate me.
“Um, Doctor Horn?”. Can you please speak Earth talk,” I interrupt her mid-sentence. She laughs and pats my shoulder.
“I’m sorry kiddo, what I am trying to say is that you still have many cysts on your ovaries. Some of them look bigger than last time. Your Polycystic Ovary Syndrome seems to be getting worse. If any of those cysts get any bigger we may have to operate.”
I look down at the tiled floor. The room is quiet for a few seconds before I look at Dr. Horn and ask her the question that has been hounding me for days. “Will I be able to have children?”
Dr.Horn gives me a sympathetic look before replying, “It will be very difficult, almost impossible.”
Her words ring in my ears that whole afternoon. For as long as I can remember I have wanted children. How is it possible for my dream to be taken away from me with just a few words from one medical physician?
I am angry. I am angry at myself, at the doctor, and at the lab that processed my results. Why? I think to myself as I hear the doorbell ring. Why am I so angry?
“Veronica!” I hear my mother yell.
“Andrew is here to see you,” she continues. The butterflies instantly begin fluttering in my stomach which chases away all the angry feelings from moments before. I run downstairs and into the arms of my love.
“Hey you,” he begins, “how did your appointment go today?”
I freeze in his arms. One look at his face instantly brings me to tears.
“Hey,” he whispers holding my face in his hands, “it can’t be that bad.”
“Andrew, the doctor said I might not be able to have kids!” I sob loudly. “It ruins all of our plans and if you don’t want to marry me now I will understand. Who would want to marry a woman like me? I’m damaged!”
“Hey now,” Andrew stops me.
He holds both of my hands and looks me in the eyes. “I love you, he says. I love you for you and don’t you forget it. I don’t care what some doctor thinks. You are not damaged. Don’t be silly Veronica. Nothing in this world could stop me from making you my wife.”
I smile and think, “I’m the luckiest woman alive.”
Fast forward seven years.
It’s sunny outside. The bright light is making its way inside my kitchen. I look out the window as I drink a cup of coffee. I observe the lawn and make a mental note to remind Andrew to cut the grass. I sit at the kitchen table and open the newspaper to catch up on current events. Something grazes my leg and I look down just as Daisy hides under the table. Come out of there Daisy, I know it’s you, I call playfully. Daisy pokes her head from under the table. She may only be a dog, but I know a grin when I see one. I laugh as I rub her head.
“Good girl,” I say to her.
“What’s for breakfast wife?” I laugh as I see Andrew grinning from the kitchen doorway.
He has made it a habit to call me wife in the mornings. I often play along with him and call him husband. We both find it hilarious referring to each other by these names.
“Well husband,” I reply, “you can choose between Lucky Charms or Frosted Flakes.”
“I’ll have Lucky Charms!” shrieks a little voice from behind my husband.
Andrew turns around to reveal a four year old girl hanging tightly to his neck. “It appears we have a special guest,” he laughs.
I reach for my daughter and reply with a smile, “That we do husband, that we do.”