Sunday, November 15

Lesson #12 - Choosing To Panic Does Nobody Any Good

I have been to many a doctor it a dentist, an ophthalmologist or an chiropractor. While I may be young, compared to most, I have had my share of appointments. Little did I know, however, that the ones with my OB/GYN would be the ones I dreaded the most!

So, about two months ago (mid-September) I went in for my "yearly" appointment. I try to tell myself that these things are a necessary evil and that going is for the greater good. I am sitting on the table being poked and my OB/GYN starts trying to have a conversation with me. While it didn't seem awkward to me at the time, I feel as though bringing up my husband and kid while in my "no-fly zone" just doesn't seem right. In any case, I answered her questions and nodded - though I don't know WHY because she couldn't see my head moving - through the appointment. Just as quickly as it began, everything was done and I was on my way.

A few weeks later I get a call from my doctor's office. The calm voice on the voice mail told me not to panic, but to call the office immediately to set-up a follow-up appointment in regards to my "yearly" exam. Okay, now I KNOW she said NOT to panic...but HELLO?!?! Against the receptionist's advice, I started to panic...thoughts of every single thing that could be going wrong with me began running through my head. Finally, I called the office back to see what the fuss was all about. A nice lady picked up the phone and started rattling off days I could come in to get my results. "Can't someone just tell me over the phone," I asked. Wouldn't that be the easy solution?? Instead of telling me not to panic, just give me the darn results over the phone. Then, if I need to make another appointment we can deal with things at the point - not a minute before. "I'm sorry, but you have to come into the office for your test results." My first question was why...didn't you bleed me (read - my insurance company) enough during my pregnancy? Is the extra $350 really going to make THAT big of a difference on your earnings statement for this fiscal year?? Instead of ignoring the good doctor - and against my better judgment - I made an appointment.

Note: Sometimes I feel as though doctors force their patients to make appointments just so they can break up their days and chat with someone - and get paid big bucks for it! The. End.

Fast forward a week later (for those of you playing at home, we are in October at this point) and you will find me in the waiting room at my OB/GYN's office...again...shelling out $20 for an appointment...again. The only reason I am having to pay the $20 co-pay is because the OB/GYN is considered a "specialty" doctor - give me a break! Okay, so the nurse finally calls my name and, like a child who just found out her parent lied and said the doctor's office is code for pet store, I walk back to the pre-appointment room. The pre-appointment room is like a holding cell where they take you and force you to get on a scale, pee in a cup, put up with the blood pressure cuff and ask you the most intimate details of your sex life. I don't even sit down before I look at the unnervingly perky/peppy nurse and say, "I'm only here for results and that is what I want. Now." She tried to get me to give her the dirty details, but I was having none of it. Obviously frustrated by my lack of compliance, she opted to take me to the exam room instead of fighting about my weight and whether or not my husband and I use condoms (she should already know the answer to that...idiot).

I waited another few minutes before the doctor finally decided to come into the exam room. She shook my hand, sat in her little rolly chair and looked at me. She explained that the test results from my yearly exam were "abnormal" and other tests had to be conducted. There wasn't much said on why the results were abnormal, though I started to think the worst. I asked if it was some sort of genetic disease or even worse - cancer!! I was assured that there was no reason to be alarmed, but I couldn't help but contemplate the "what-if" scenarios that I am SO good at coming up with in my head!! I was told to make an appointment to come back in 2 weeks for the follow-up tests. While it wasn't a dire emergency, it shouldn't be ignored either. By the time I left the office I was convinced I was going to die and only had a few months to live.

I just got back from my follow-up-to-the-results-from-the-first-test-exam (we are in November - 2 months after the original appointment - for those still keeping up at home). I paid ANOTHER $20 and was stretched, poked, prodded, scraped, cut to only be sent on my way in the end. No questions were answered and no results were revealed. I was forced to make yet another appointment to get my test results. While I am giddy with excitement to return and pay ANOTHER $20 just to hear them tell me I'm dying, I am going to wait until December to get the news. I figure the doctor can wait an extra 2 weeks to get her damn $20 from me!!


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