I can't knock the NHS. It was there for us in our hour of need and its midwives and obstetricians were faultless. But by golly it still has problems.
I received a letter just after we left the hospital, a copy of which went to my doctor's surgery. It was concise, to say the least, and said something along the lines of:
'Alice Pullen has suffered a stillbirth. Baby was born not breathing on 29.11.10'
It didn't make pleasant reading, but it was necessary. My doctor needed to know.
Then, a fortnight or so later, I received my post-birth check up appointment from the same doctors surgery. It asked me to come in today, January 25, at 2.50pm - with my baby. To be honest, I looked at it as some kind of administrational slip up.
I was too kind.
Just now, the practise called to confirm the time and date and again, and I knew it was coming, she said, 'And don't forget to bring your baby.'
I WOULD LOVE TO BRING MY BABY YOU ILL-INFORMED FOOL. BUT I CAN'T. HE ISN'T HERE. AND I DON'T NEED REMINDING.
The receptionist went silent. Literally, she just sat on the other end of the phone, I assume her mouth was open in shock and her stomach had left her several seconds previously.
I finished, by saying that yes, I would be there today, thank you very much.
You would think, wouldn't you, that these stupid receptionists would read your notes or put a big BE NICE TO HER sign by my name.