“Good,” the doctor replied. “I’ll see you then.”
“Doctor, wait!” Matthew said. “You have to tell me something! Is there a problem with the baby? …Or Kristine?”
“No, Matthew,” the doctor said. “You can calm down. I assure you that there is nothing wrong with your baby or your wife. They are both perfectly healthy physically. I foresee no problems at all with the pregnancy or the delivery.”
Matthew could tell from the doctor’s tone and his guarded responses that there was some sort of problem and that the doctor wasn’t going to tell him over the phone. He didn’t want to push things, or to cause his wife, who was standing wide-eyed and pale-faced in the doorway, to panic. He knew worry wasn’t good for the baby she was just four months from delivering. He hung up the phone, told his wife as much as he knew, telling her not to panic. And the two of them spent the night holding each other and staring at the ceiling.
One of the many things that crossed Matthew’s mind as he lay there was that on their last visit to the doctor a month ago he had run all sorts of tests on both Kristine and the fetus. The doctor was vague about what most of them were, but he did say that recent advances in genetics and prenatal care had allowed medical science to discover more about a developing fetus than ever before.
Matthew looked at the bulge in his wife’s belly and wondered of those tests had revealed something about the baby that would have caused the grave concern that he thought he had heard in Dr. Turner’s voice.
Was he just imagining it, or during their phone conversation had Dr. Turner hesitated when he said that Kristine and the bay were both healthy…physically? Could the tests reveal a mental problem?
As he and his wife sat in the waiting room just twelve hours later, he was still wondering.