‘That doctor ended up saving me twice in that hospital — first with a life-saving surgery, then again with a simple business card.’: After ectopic pregnancy, woman credits doctor with helping her ‘mental recovery’

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“She handed me the business card and said, ‘I feel like you may need this.’

Her smile was tentative but kind, and she struggled to maintain eye contact. She really didn’t know me that well: after all, we had just met the day before.

I smiled back as I flipped the card over and read, ‘Dr Victoria Engles – Clinical Psychologist.’ My eyes widened a bit as the meaning of the name settled in.

She could immediately sense my reluctance and said, ‘You may not realize this now, but a lot has happened to you that you will need to process. One big part of it will be the grief over your loss, and I believe having someone to talk to will be very helpful.’

The word ‘loss’ made the hospital room spin a bit. Up to this point, I hadn’t really thought about losing anything because I had survived. I was removed from my ventilator and in pain from my surgery, but I was alive.

The day before, she had met me on a gurney, clinging to life. My body had lost over 70% of its blood, and she had been tasked with the job of saving me.

I started to talk, but the words couldn’t find a way out. I wanted to tell her I was fine, give the card back, and firmly state I didn’t need a psychologist. I wanted to scream that the pregnancy was a surprise anyway.

Yet I knew, somewhere in my soul, I would need that card. The sadness had already started to burrow into my existence. However, the grief would not only be about the ectopic pregnancy that almost took my life. The grief would also be about how my husband of only 2 months had to call 911 to save me, and about the months I would lose physically recovering. And it would also be about moving forward after this tragedy, and yes, some of the grief would also be about the baby who would never be.

I used that card just one week after being discharged. I learned so much in the months that followed about the connection of grief with physical and mental recovery.

That doctor ended up saving me twice in that hospital — first with a life-saving surgery, then again with a simple business card.”

Courtesy of Stacy Seltzer

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Stacy Seltzer. You can follow her journey on Facebook. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

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