Monday, October 1, 2007

It's all downhill when the "Lady Parts Doctor" starts to operate like The Cheesecake Factory...

Most mornings I shut off the alarm and pick up my blackberry. My husband calls it an addiction, I call it managing my schedule. I like to take a look so I know what the day looks like. I need to decide what I should wear. Important meetings, early meetings, no meetings, I want to know what's in store. This morning I didn't look and it wasn't until I was on my way to the office that I realized I had taken a half day to go to the doctor's office.

There's a reason why women live longer than men. It's simply because we go to the doctor. Men typically go to the doctor when they feel like they're near death and have no other option. The problem is they sometimes are near death by the time they finally go. For my male friends out there, here's a nifty little link to see if you need to make a little trip to the doctor's office. My husband currently has a terrible death rattle. Every time he coughs I cringe; I'm convinced there's small pieces of his lungs coming out with every cough. He refuses to go to the doctor - "it's viral" he says, "what are they going to do about it?". I think he has SARS. Doctors are the worst patients.

I, like most women, am fairly anal about my doctor's office scheduling. This is also helped along by the handy little reminder cards that are mailed to me at regular intervals. (I especially like the Garfield ones mailed to me by my quirky dentist. It makes me happy because I like him and it means I get a new toothbrush.) My "lady parts doctor" is not this helpful and as a result I was so busy with nonsense over the last year and a half that I forgot. Of course when I called all those pregnant people had taken the appointments so I had to schedule out a few months. I've long since forgotten the appointment so here I am, the day is upon me and I've been blindsided by my blackberry.

I find myself sitting in the paper gown around 2PM today waiting for my doctor. I've read all the wall posters, looked at each piece of framed art and I've now begun investigating a piece of dry skin within eye sight just below my neckline. Enter my "lady parts doc" who is actually a big man about my father's age. I've recommended him to most of my friends. He's fairly practical, efficient and fast. The latter being the most attractive given the circumstances. He starts in the northern region.

Lady Parts Doc: "How long has that been red?"
Me: "Since I scratched at it about a minute ago"
Lady Parts Doc: "So it wasn't red before you scratched at it?"
Me: "No"
Lady Parts Doc: "Why are you scratching at yourself?"
Me: "Because I was lying here with nothing to do and saw the dry skin and decided to scratch at it"
Lady Parts Doc: "You should read the posters on the wall instead"
Me: "I did, that one has a typo"
Lady Parts Doc: "Which one?"
Me: "That one."
Lady Parts Doc: "Hmmm, well it's old anyway and we don't offer that service anymore"

He moves South. He's now begun talking about cancer patients, application of make-up and a fundraiser he was trying to get off the ground. All I see is eyes above the paper gown and a head between my knees. I can not concentrate on what he's saying so I keep nodding my head and agreeing with him. For the love of all that is holy, move it along man. He had to choose today to be chatty??

After what seemed like an eternity I meet him back in his office. Of course he's found things that I didn't know were wrong and sends me off with prescriptions, a slip for lab work and prenatal vitamins because to quote the good doctor, "You never know and so you might as well". I think the man is willing me to get pregnant. He says "these are the same vitamins I put my father on when he was old and anemic, you don't have to be trying to get pregnant to take these". A likely story.

So I shuffle across the street to Pennsylvania Hospital to open up a vein. After two waiting rooms I get what looks like the pager you get when you're waiting for a table at the Cheesecake Factory. (Is there a bar where I can get a cocktail while I wait?) I knew they were going to make me pee in a cup so I had started drinking tea in waiting room #1. Now I am staring at the little pager waiting for the blinking and buzzing to start just so I can go to the bathroom. Why is it so impossible to time these things appropriately?

Thankfully the little beeper starts flashing and buzzing, I give them plenty of DNA and I'm turned back out to waiting room #2. I walk home acutely aware that after all that trouble I have no health insurance cards (they have somehow ended up in my husband's wallet). I can't stop at the anti climactic. Alas no drugs, but then again I didn't even realize I had anything wrong with me, I suppose I'll survive one more day.

1 comment:

Sandra said...

Wrong Assumption! Some women don't go to doctors either - Once in 5 years after being threatened by pushy people may be the only way to get me to make an appointment... and Lady Parts Doctor appointments are the worst. I always seem to have to negotiate with them to get some requirements 'deferred' or 'out-of-scope'