I do not want to be your doctor.
You come in, complaining about bleeding and cramping. As the only female doctor in clinic that morning, I am asked to see you. I notice the high school ID badge you have hanging around your neck, your gray hooded sweatshirt.
Four days ago, see, you had an abortion. 7 days ago, I had a miscarriage.
I listen quietly to your story, gently examine you for signs of infection, and do not understand your decision at all. The voice inside of me wants to scream at you. How could you purposely end the life that was growing inside of you? It doesn't seem fair - you did not want to be pregnant, but were, and so ended it. I have tried to get pregnant for months and months, and yet lost the tiny baby that I carried.
I think about our children - the ones neither of us will know. They would have been almost exactly the same age. Maybe one day they would have met - at school, or soccer, or swim lessons, two bright-eyed, smiling children.
I do not want to be your doctor, yet here I am. I have to put aside my sorrow, my anger, and try to be the best doctor I can be. That is what doctors are supposed to do. I try to treat you just like I would treat anyone else, like I would treat my mother or a dear friend. I lay my hand on your shoulder, explaining that this is all normal. But it isn't. Abortion isn't normal. Expected would have perhaps been a better word. I give you medicine to treat your pain, antibiotics to make sure you do not get sicker, and encourage you to come back in a few days so we can make sure you are getting better.
As I think about you, over the next few days, I say some silent prayers.
That I will remember that Jesus died for your sins just like he died for mine.
That God will replace my bitterness with compassion.
That God will comfort me as I mourn.
That God will comfort you as you mourn.
That God will heal the wounds I cannot see that I am sure you carry, underneath that gray hooded sweatshirt.