Outed (nothing bad has happened yet)

On Monday, as planned, H and I went to see the GP, in order to get all my miraculous baby-sparing medications transferred to NHS prescriptions, which would be ever so much cheaper and easier to refill.

Naturally, I became terribly anxious (read: freaked out, snapped at H for no particular reason, had anxiety dreams) about this. I had visions of doctors refusing to do this without a proper letter from Dr George (we’d only managed to crowbar a rather vague email out of him), or refusing to do this on principle because it was a private IVF cycle (you know, like cosmetic dentistry), or refusing to do it because they didn’t understand why we’d want these drugs in the first place (in NHS IVF, they often have you stop progesterone on getting a positive pregnancy test (I know! What the serious fuck? And then they wonder why NHS success rates suck compared to private! How about because they treat it as vanity bollocks and don’t keep up with the research at-fucking-all?)).

Yeah, no. We saw a rather eager young chap who not only cheerfully and instantly sprang to his computer and printed out handfuls and handfuls of prescriptions for me, but also booked me into the NHS antenatal service, tested my urine for sugar and protein as if I were a normal pregnant woman (all fine, BTW), and wrote me out a Maternity Exemption certificate. This piece of NHS starlike wonder and genius guarantees that all pregnant women do not have to pay a penny for any even vaguely pregnancy-related medications for up to a year after the birth of their child. To make up for the being-shit-about-infertility part. This certificate is now stuck to my fridge, so I can stare at it in bewilderment and awe with all the more ease.

And then I went to work, and very discreetly, by email, let my boss (who knew I was doing IVF) and the office manager (who has to sort out which category sick-leave and doctors’ appointments fall under, because pregnancy stuff is tracked separately so as not to affect sick leave entitlement), that I was, in fact, uh, well, oh for God’s sake, pregnant (eeeeeeep I typed it I typed it eeeeeeeeeeep). And could we keep it quiet just for now, please and thank you.

Since when, my boss has given the world’s worst performance ever as discreet secret-keeper. She turned, on the instant, into the Mr Bean of discretion. I’m surprised she doesn’t *wink wink nudge nudge* me every time she speaks to me. For example, this morning I got caught in the rain on my way to work, and feeling chilled and disgruntled, I grabbed a decaf coffee. I have studied the available guidelines from several sources, and it seems that the magic number to stay under is 200mg of caffeine a day, and one frikken’ decaf has between 10 and 50. Also, I usually drink several coffees a day, and colleagues do actually notice and comment when I cut down (May: wild hair, glasses, nerdy teeshirt, coffee cup). So, decoy coffee, if you will. I had not yet sat my damp self down at my desk when Boss popped up and gasped: ‘Oh, May, is that coffee? Should you be drinking that?’ ‘It’s decaf,’ I said. I should’ve said ‘Of course not. It’s methadone,’ but I was tired and undercaffeinated. ‘I should phone your husband and let him know!’ she trilled. I smiled, weakly, incandescing under my various colleagues’ curious glances.

(Phone my husband oh my horsey God).

Later, she freaked out when I went to go pull something out from under my desk, and got a male colleague to come and do it for me. Which he did one-handed, and then gave us both a very curious stare, while I went absolutely puce with mortification.

I may have accidentally murdered her before the end of the 1st trimester. Or, because I simply must not strain myself, got any number of willing colleagues to do it for me.

It dawns on me that I do not have a repeat prescription for the Metformin. So I shall have to go and annoy the GPs again tomorrow. Bother.


13 responses to “Outed (nothing bad has happened yet)

  • Hat

    HA! i got the first comment in! i dont know why that excites me so. But congrats on it all. happy for you. truly am. Hope it all goes well. My bestie back home is Pg with #2 and is dealing with morning sickness pretty bad. hope you don’t get that.

  • Betty M

    your boss is going to be a grade a pain in the behind! Expect your lunch box to be scrutinised next.

  • chon

    I can so see your boss being all so “discrete” but her happiness for you makes me smile!

  • a

    Thank you! I appreciate the constant reassurance… πŸ™‚

    Telling people at work personal stuff = the worst thing on earth, as far as I am concerned. But the Mr. Bean of discretion is making me laugh. I still can’t reconcile Mr. Bean with Rowan Atkinson of Black Adder Season II where he was kinda hot.

    Glad to hear that NHS is living up to your generally favorable (for the most part) opinion.

  • korechronicles

    Hooray for Maternity Exemption Certificate…photocopy it, frame it in largest red frame available at IKEA and deposit it at the desk of HR minions who have previously given you such a massively bad time. Once you’re ready for it to be public knowledge of course.

    And I’ve been laughing at your tweets about your boss. That’s how nothing, but nothing, is ever kept a secret at my place of employment either. Must be all the book dander floating in the air.

  • kylie

    heh. And overcome by burning envy of the maternity exemption. Australian medicare has nothing like, which is why we forked over $200 for a weeks worth of Progsterone last January.

    On the coffee/discretion front. Given that my boss is a nosy one, and knows that I am in the process of trying, he gets suspicious when i cut out coffee. so i took to getting takeaway hot chocolates- same cup and he isn’t close enough to smell the difference. in terms of tea- i have ended up with a herbal tea that smells like chai, but has no caffiene

  • Mina

    If it is not bound to be kept quiet as long as you want, and considering Mr. Bean, it probably won’t, well then, just pin the ‘Baby on Board’ badge and just walk up to your boss and ask in a ‘Dame aux Camelias’ voice and the back of your hand to your forehead to give you the place, since you are feeling faint. THAT is a scene I would pay money to see. πŸ™‚
    As for the other mysteries (YOUNG chap working for NHS and being all HELPFUL and shit?), they are so welcome. Finally!

  • Melissa

    Wow, has your boss ever heard of DISCRETION!?

  • Dr Spouse

    It’s for any prescriptions at all, I think (so, stock up on paracetamol now). You get it if you are formula feeding your birth child. You don’t get it if you have an adopted child under 1. Not at all bitter, me.

  • QoB

    Maybe start complaining to all and sundry about that minor surgery you had recently and how you’re not quite back to 100% yet (all true!) and then take your boss aside and tell her to knock that shit off. What, is she also a practicing midwife as well as your boss?

  • Blanche

    Hurray for cheerful & eager young chaps in the NHS. It really is too bad that both qualities will be beaten out of him shortly, so take advantage while you can. Not so much hurray for over-careful bosses (but yay for the caring?).

    I like Kylie’s suggestions about decoy beverages. There may come a time when coffee (blessed beverage that it is) does not appeal, so having a plan to appear the same without subjugating self to something not appealing is very wise.

  • Twangy

    Oh Boss-lady! NO. No. No-no-no.
    I am pretzeled with the no-ness.

    Other than that, very glad to hear all proceeds well, and nicenice young doctor is so accommodating.

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