I have known Dr. Louise Smyth for eight years. We met providentially at a youth retreat to which I had accompanied my high school students. As a chaperone, I got to choose the afternoon presentation I wanted to attend and found myself listening to Dr. Smyth speak about health and reproduction. The first thing that struck me was how real and sincere she was.
To back up a bit, I had not had very good experiences with doctors for various serious and less-serious ailments growing up. It seemed to me that none of them really cared about the issues I experienced nor how the problems were affecting my life. They seemed to want to quickly get through their routine questions and exam and push me out the door with a prescription. None could offer me any remedy or suggestion that gave me any relief. One of the ongoing issues I was experiencing was excruciating menstrual cramps along with very irregular periods. The doctors I had seen insisted that “the pill” was the only option, even at the age of eleven! Needless to say, I was very skeptical of doctors.
Listening to Dr. Smyth, I did not get the same feeling of an overwhelmed, inattentive doctor; rather, I was simply engrossed in her impressive medical knowledge and the passion and ease in which she shared it with these young people. It was clear then (and only more so now as I have gotten to know her) that she was not only practicing medicine but more-accurately living her God-given vocation. After the presentation was over, I thanked her and asked her if she had a card, since she spoke about specializing in women’s reproductive health. I just had a feeling I would need to get a hold of her at some point in the near future.
About a year later, I continued to struggle with menstrual issues. After a related trip to the ER and leaving with a prescription which only made matters worse, I knew I needed to dig out that card. I called Dr. Smyth’s office, which at the time was the Plover Fertility Care Center, and she was willing to see me and confident that she could help.
In the seven years that I have been a patient of Dr. Smyth, we have been through a lot. Of course there were the medical issues to work through, learning Creighton charting, and being schooled in hormones, biology, chemistry, and everything in between, but that was only the beginning. In 2010 my husband and I learned that we were expecting. As excited as we were, Dr. Smyth and her close-knit staff met our level of excitement. They showered us with thoughtful gifts as we began our journey into parenthood and helped every step of the way to ensure a safe, healthy pregnancy. In December of that year, we welcomed our son into the world. In late 2012, we again learned that we were expecting and took great comfort in knowing that we had this exceptional team helping us to nurture and monitor this new little life. Our daughter was born that summer.
Not only has Dr. Smyth celebrated with us in times of joy, we have shared great sorrow and tears as well. In early 2015, my husband and I learned that we were again expecting, although it was clear from the beginning that something was very wrong. Contacting Dr. Smyth, she made room in her schedule right away and promised me that she would do everything she could to help sustain the pregnancy. She kept her promise and after a valiant effort, we said goodbye to our little one less than a week later. Our miscarriage was one of the most difficult experiences we have ever faced as a couple and as a family, but it could have been infinitely more difficult without the support, guidance, and spiritual direction that Dr. Smyth offered.
The wisdom, care, and sincerity of Dr. Louise Smyth are truly unparalleled in her profession. She has gone above and beyond, leaving me very blessed that I have found such a trusted health advisor and advocate. As her patient, I can’t help but feel that I am being cared for by a close friend as well as a medical doctor. I am infinitely grateful and look forward to her continued care as she courageously begins the next step in her vocation story.