Jonathan’s first order of business with his newfound freedom was to do some research on in-home care. He loved his father-in-law, but he didn’t step away from the restaurant to be his nurse. He stepped away to help Skyla destress her life and to nurse her back to health. Skyla was a smart woman, but she was too depressed to think of solutions to her own problems. Jonathan, however, could see that the biggest stressor in her life was her father. If she could know that it was possible for her father to be cared for without her having to watch him constantly, the weight on her mind would be lifted, and she could begin focusing on the other thing that was plaguing her: getting pregnant.
While he was in research mode, Jonathan thought he may as well look up information about fertility drugs and clinics if it ever came to that. Whether he needed the information or not, he felt hopeful about having Skyla back to her old self in no time.
There was a brief, random moment when Jonathan found himself thinking of his grandmother. The memory of her caused him to remember Dr. Vinson, and he made a point to talk to her about the matter as well. After speaking Dr. Vinson, and collating information online, he felt he built up a strong enough case to present to Skyla.
“…so…you want to bring a stranger into our home to care for my father so we can go on vacation?”
“No! I mean, yeah, that’s part of it, but…listen! Your father is a lot to handle! You need help, Sky. What about when the baby comes? How are you going to handle both of them? You’re a prisoner in your own house because you’re always handling your dad. What if you just want to get away for an afternoon or something? You should be able to go clear your head whenever you need to. Will you consider it? Please.”
She knew he was right. She was tired and frustrated, and in a way, she knew that the stress was preventing her from getting pregnant. And, she missed her husband. She missed the times when they could spend time together without all the worry looming over her. She had almost forgotten what that felt like and looked forward to getting back to that place again.
“Have you spoken with Dr. Vinson,” she asked.
“Yes. And she gave me some recommendations.”
“Ok. Set it up.”
“Really? You’re sure?”
“We need this!”
They did need it, and Jonathan was relieved that she agreed so easily. Her next statement surprised him and made him even more relieved.
“And…ask her about recommending a fertility specialist too.”
Within a few days, Jonathan and Skyla found themselves back at Willow Creek Hospital in the office of a Dr. Bailey. The nurses had previously examined Skyla and taken various samples from her to be analyzed. She and Jonathan sat in the lobby while awaiting the results. They read all the magazines and watched three movies. They saw people who were sick trudge through the door, disappear through the heavy, metal doors, and then prance out of the hospital as if they were a brand new person. They stopped trying to keep count of how many neighbors they had throughout the day and almost gave up hope that the doctor would ever see them again. Then, at last, a nurse called for them. Dr. Bailey was younger than they expected—probably around their age. But, he came highly recommended, and they put all of their faith in him.
Skyla was nervous. She wanted to believe that there was nothing physically wrong with her, but she couldn’t shake the feeling. True, if something were in fact wrong with her, there were treatments that could help that kind of thing, but they weren’t guaranteed. On the flip side, even if the problem was just her being stressed, there was still no guarantee she could get pregnant. She tried really hard to remain positive, but she couldn’t ignore the fact that it was highly plausible that all of it could be a waste of time.
“Well, folks,” Dr. Bailey said, “let’s cut to the chase, shall we?”
“Yes, thank you, Dr. Bailey,” Jonathan said.
“Mrs. Pruett…I have combed over your lab results and x-rays many times to be sure I didn’t miss anything… You are perfectly healthy! I don’t see any physical or medical reason why you haven’t been able to conceive. Chemically though…you may be a bit imbalanced due to stress. That’s a bit harder for us to detect. The best thing I can tell you to do is get the stress out of your life and try again. Get away! Go on a long vacation. I bet you’ll be pregnant in no time!”
Jonathan was relieved, and so was Skyla although she was still afraid.
“Thank you, Dr. Bailey! That’s the best news we’ve heard all week,” Jonathan said.