Thursday, 22 September 2011

"I don't know....." is good

I grew up visiting Gynecologists almost on monthly basis since I was 10 years old. I had gone to Indonesian, Chinese, Korean, American, Malaysian and Singaporean Gynecologists trying to understand what was wrong with my body. I tried traditional Indonesian herbs, western pills, traditional Chinese herbs, massages, and few other things to cure this thing.

It took me 14 doctors and 21 years to finally find the problems and fix it.

For male readers, my apology... Today's write ups may not be for you but I think it may be useful if you have sisters, wives or girlfriends who have problems with their reproductive organs.

I had irregular periods. Most Gynecologists I visited told me not to worry too much as I only had some cysts in my ovaries. Sometimes I had my period very light, sometimes I didn't have any period for a year, sometimes I bled profusely until I had to be rushed to Emergency room.
So, it baffled me when the Gynecologists told me not to worry about this coz I was worried sick when I was stuck in freezing-cold ER for few hours with piles of ice packs on my belly.

When I reached early twenties, few Gynecologists told me that I might not be able to have children. At that time I didn't like children. Having seen horrific restaurant events where children ran around screaming and finally vomiting their meals on the floor, I found them to be annoying creatures. So when I was told that I might not have children, I was cool... It didn't effect me at all except when I had serious relationship.... when I thought I would marry the guy. I would tell him that I might not be able to give him children. As I wrote earlier, I had few failed relationships. Some of them were contributed by this. When I told my (ex) boyfriends about my conditions, some started to avoid me, some said we could adopt and some even said we could get dogs.

When I told my husband the facts about my reproductive malfunctions, he told me we could either adopt or spend the rest of our lives just the two of us, traveling without excess baggages.

Everywhere I lived, I had to have a trusted gyne. So when I moved here, searching for a gyne was my top priority. I tried more than 3 gynes here who also told me that I had cysts and nothing could be done about it except taking pills to "force" my period to come out.

One night I was driving the Damansara area when I saw a woman clinic opened until 9pm. It was perfect for me coz I could go there after work so I didn't need to take a day off work.

When I went there, I met Dr. Collin Lee. After listening to my medical history and had my USG scan, he told me, "I don't know what's wrong with you."

He was the first and the only gynecologist who told me "I don't know"

But then he was the one who gave me my two "miracle daughters"

Because he didn't know, he did further tests. I was put into so many tests and I had my first laparoscopy, a procedure where a mini camera was inserted into my body to "see" the condition of my organs clearer. He also performed a biopsy, taking liquid and tissue samples from my uterus.

Finally he found out what's wrong with me, put me in 1-year treatment program and performed 2 DDNC procedures. Throughout those years, he always said, "We will try our best."

My first daughter was conceived naturally two months after the last DDNC. Both Dr. Collin and I never expected this. We thought I would need to try IVF to have babies. After the delivery of my first daughter, my period has been very punctual... No more pills, no more injections, no more monthly trip to gynecologist.

Two years later, my second daughter was conceived.

It all started with "I don't know"

How many times were we too scared or too embarrassed to say "I don't know" when we were unsure?

A lot of narrow minded people think saying I don't know means admitting stupidity.

Our world is huge... So many things to see, so many things to learn.... It's impossible to know everything.. yet so often I heard people said,"I know everything, no need to learn."

To me, learning is a lifelong experience.... I learnt from my trusted gynecologist that a simple and humble "I don't know" has made him one of the most influential Gynecologists and Fertility experts in Malaysia. His small clinic has grown into a public listed company and he was conferred a datukship (similar to a "Sir" in England) few years ago.

I also learnt that it pays to get a second, third, or even fourteenth (Dr. Collin Lee was my 14th gynecologist I visited in 20 years) opinion when we are not sure about something.

If it weren't for the "I don't know", I wouldn't be able to survive my daughters's nonstop challenging questions of "why". They ask me at least 5 why's a day.. And I often have to answer, "I don't know..... let's find out."

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