Everyone tells me to follow my dreams, so I’m going back to bed.
“Now, during this part, you’ll be the sole sonographer. I’m not even in the room. The mom asks you questions, you answer her like you’ve been taught. No matter what. This is your final exam, and then you’re done! Okay?” My teacher, Mrs. Brewer, asked.
I nodded, barely containing my excitement. “Yes, I’m ready.”
Mrs. Brewer smiled and nodded once, before waving her hand for me to proceed.
I flashed her an excited smile and started to skip down the hallway to the sonogram room in Mead, Jones and Brewer Women’s Health Center.
Mrs. Brewer was married to Mr. Mead, but at the time they met and began the practice, they’d just been partners. When they married, they chose to keep their respective names, much to Mr. Mead’s consternation.
“Walk,” Mrs. Brewer said laughingly.
I tossed a smile over my shoulder and knocked on the door.
When a muffled, ‘come in,’ sounded from the room beyond, I opened the door and smiled at the woman who was currently on her back on the exam table.
“Hello!” I said to the woman. “My name’s Memphis Conner and I’ll be doing your sonogram today. How are you doing?”
The woman, probably around my age if not a little younger, smiled. “I’m okay. Just tired and ready to be finished being pregnant.”
She looked about ready to pop. At probably less than a hundred pounds before she got pregnant, and as small as a beanpole if the tininess of her arms was anything to go by, she wasn’t used to having so much extra weight. She looked like she swallowed a watermelon.
I nodded. “Most moms are ready by this point,” I agreed. “If I can get you to pull your shirt up so I can get to your belly, we’ll get started.”
She moved her shirt up over her belly and revealed the most perfect stomach I’d ever seen. Not a stretch mark in sight.
“This’ll be a little cold,” I said as I squirted the lubrication for the wand I’d be using on her stomach.
She giggled and squirmed, looking at the scowling boyfriend in the corner I’d done a good job at ignoring since I’d walked in.
He looked screwy.
Black clothes, dirty, greasy black hair. Black lined eyes. White contacts in that showed only the pupil of his eye.
He literally looked fucking creepy, but who was I to say anything?
The only thing missing was the piercings and tattoos.
I pressed a few more buttons on my computer before placing the wand on the girl’s stomach.
The mother smiled up at her baby, and the baby daddy actually turned his head to the screen to see what was there. Which was surprising since I didn’t think he’d actually care, but I was wrong.
Moving it around a little bit, I smiled as I saw the cutest little chubby face I’d ever seen.
I normally got to do the ones that told the sex of the babies. When they were at that age gestation, they looked nothing more than aliens.
This one, though, had fat on top of fat.
What he didn’t have, however, was a heartbeat.
My heart started to pound as I moved the wand around, trying for a different angle, hoping beyond hope that I would get something I knew wasn’t there.
I glanced over at my teacher behind me, but she was looking down at her hands, having come to the same decision that I had not even moments before.
Knowing what I had to do, I said, “If you’ll excuse me, I need to go get your doctor.”
I didn’t give them a chance to ask questions; quickly hanging up the wand and high tailing it out of the room before they realized what was going on.
“He’s in his office,” Mrs. Brewer said sadly from behind me.
I nodded and walked to his office, stopping at the entrance to his door. “Dr. Mead?”
Dr. Mead looked up and smiled warmly at me. “Ahh, Memphis. How are you today, dear? Have you finished with Mrs. Deon?”
I shook my head. “Baby Deon doesn’t have a heartbeat.”
He stood stoically, and ran his hand down the front part of his stomach, flattening his tie as he walked around the desk. “Hells bells.”
With that, we both walked to the ultrasound room, and he walked in with a smile.
“Hello, Deon family. How are you doing today?”
After a few nervous ‘okay’s,’ Dr. Mead walked over to the station and started to press buttons before he placed the wand to the woman’s belly.
It didn’t take him long to see the same thing I did.
Baby Deon was dead, expiring in his mother’s womb only three days before his due date.