Emily Goes to the Doctor
Yep, I am sick.
After a week of fever, swollen tonsils, general crudiness and headaches that would make a llamaraptor cry, I decided that maybe I should go to the doctor.
I hate the doctor.
Not the doctor his or herself, as he or she is typically a rather nice individual. But the whole “I need healed” process is NO FUN. It’s worse than going to the dentist’s office.
I decided to show up exactly at 8:00am, when they open. I mean, I didn’t really have a choice, as my hatred of the doctor requires me to spend as little time possible in the office. And everyone knows the formula for calculating how long you will spend in the office.
Oh! You don’t? Good thing you have me. It’s m=x^34,000. For every minute past opening (x), the patient will wait (m) amount of time. In layman’s terms, arrive even one minute after 8:00am, and you’re spending the whole friggin’ day surrounded by coughing, diseased old psychotic people. In even simpler terms, you’re fucked.
Before I could even finish signing in, I was attacked by Enemy #1. Most people do not have this enemy at their doctor’s office, but if you come from a small town, you know who I’m talking about.
Enemy #1: The Girl from High School
She knew your parents, you knew hers. You two were forced to share classes, dinners, and car space on trips to the airport. Then, after graduation, you decided to go to University and she to Community College. Somehow, she took this as a personal affront, and now takes advantage of every moment she has to kick you down. And whoop-dee-doo, she works at the freaking doctor’s office, so the only time you two ever see each other is when she’s dolled up for work and you’re so sick you’re willing to go to the doctor.
She gave me the scariest smile I’d ever seen. I signed in and ran away to a seat where my nastiness was out of her line of vision. Enemy #1: defeated.
I pulled out a book, but thanks to showing up precisely zero minutes after they opened, I was called back right away. Only to be confronted by Enemy #2.
Enemy #2: The Scales
These are not your average scales. They are the unfriendliest scales in existence. The last time you weighed yourself was a week ago, before you got sick. During that week you laid around, doing absolutely nothing, but thanks to your wonderful genetics, not even your deathbed ruins your appetite, so you continue to eat as if you weren’t sick. Then, the morning you decide to go to the doctor’s office, you eat a large, fattening breakfast, anticipating being poked and probed, and preparing in case they tell you you’re definitely going to die before you can eat another meal. You also dress in the comfiest clothes you own, translating to a sweater, your baggy jeans, and boots. So by the time you confront that terrifying set of scales, you’ve definitely added ten pounds. *Sigh* Now Enemy #1 will forever think that’s how much you weigh.
So, on the way to the scales, I rapidly shook off a few layers, namely my jacket and purse. And when my enemy made his declaration, I ignored the crap out of him. Enemy #2: defeated.
A nurse led me into a room and began to ask me about my symptoms, my medications, my family history, the color of my underpants, typing away into her laptop. Then she came at me, shoving a thermometer in my mouth, putting one of those frightening pulse-thingys on my finger (they totally creep me out with their squeezing and lights and beeping noises), and then, strapping me into Enemy #3.
Enemy #3: The Blood Pressure Cuff
This thing scares the hell out of me. It’s all, I’m going to strap myself to your arm and squeeze the blood out of it and then I’ll let up, but it will cause tinglyness and throbbing! RAWR! And the whole time, I’m trying not to think about my irrational fear of the blood pressure cuff, because that will only inflate my blood pressure, skewing the reading and making the nurse attack me with it again.
Luckily, the nurse used a stethoscope with the cuff, and I enjoy those, mostly because of the name and also because Lindsey and I used to play with one at my great-grandma’s house. Plus, she’d already used the frightening pulse-thingy so I knew she wouldn’t have to take it on my wrist (which creeps me out like none-other). I used these two comforts to deep-breathe through the cuff sucking the life out of my arm. Enemy #3: defeated.
I’d defeated three enemies in ten minutes. 3-0 and the doctor would be in to see me shortly.
I got cocky.
Folks, never get cocky in a doctor’s office.
The doctor came in and appraised my condition. She asked about past and common illnesses, and my cocky mouth informed her that not only do I get strep a lot, but I had just had mono this past summer.
She sent me to the lab.
Enemy #4: The Lab
It is never a good thing when you get sent to the Lab. The only harmless thing that happens there is leaving a urine sample, but that comes loaded with mortification and is disgusting on sooo many levels. The Lab is to the doctor what the fire-breathing armored dragon is to the fairy tale. Only you’re not allowed to fight the Lab. It is the ultimate enemy.
I sat, hyperventilating, in the Lab’s waiting room. I started to regret that I had arrived zero minutes past opening, because now there were only two other patients waiting in front of me. I had no time to prepare myself for battle. The nurse called my name, and I slowly walked the gangplank. She sat me in a chair and pulled a bar down in front of me, holding me in place. Instruments were lined up in front of me, gleaming metallically like menacing little trolls. I convinced her to draw blood last, at least, since it usually ends in me fainting.
After being poked, swabbed, gagged, and stabbed, I felt thoroughly defeated. The Lab had won. I was no match for his army of discomfort and pain. I staggered from the Lab, hiding once again from Enemy #1, and waited a grueling half an hour to hear the results of my impending death.
The nurse, once again, called me back to see the doctor. I sat numbly, tears welling up in my eyes, waiting for the diagnosis.
“The tests all came out negative. So… I guess it’s just a bug.”
At least I got out of my dentist’s appointment for later that day.
I felt like I should add that while I feel miserable, I feel even worse complaining about it. While I was in the Lab, the woman next to me was a cancer patient, and the elderly man across from me looked very ill. I thank the stars for the health that I do have, but I would very much like to be completely healthy again.