Do you remember the TV show, The Golden Girls? Remember the eldest lady, Estelle Getty, who could not filter what came out of her mouth? I’m kind of like her now…thankfully my family accepts me. I know I embarrass them with what I say sometimes. And, sometimes I just blurt out something which doesn’t seem to be connected with what is going on at the time but I feel that I need to say it anyway. I’ve also begun to be more outspoken as you will see in the vignette I am about to describe.
I had a “first” at my doctor’s office this past week. I was put into a room and met with the physician’s assistant for a short time who ordered a glucose test be done right there on the spot (because I can’t remember to take readings at home…this is constantly a battle for me). He had HIS assistant come in to do the test which took all of maybe a minute. Meanwhile the PA had left the room while the test was done. All alone in the room now, I waited…and waited…and waited. The physician’s assistant NEVER came back! I could hear him going from room to room…I continued to wait, giving him the benefit of the doubt…To help time go by, I got my patient folder off the desk and began going through it…and continued to wait…over a half hour went by. I began getting agitated. I stuck my head out of the door and asked a nurse going down the hall to check with the PA because I thought he had forgotten me. It’s highly unlikely that she did as I asked because I continued to hear the PA going from room to room. Finally HIS assistant popped her head in and asked if I was waiting for something.
“DUH….YEAH!,” in an agitated voice I answered, “ The PA. HE HAS FORGOTTEN ME!”
I can tell you that this time he was told because he was back in my room in under a minute in his light and oh-let’s see what’s what mode… He had no idea what we had discussed… (Note: Before I go on, please understand that I hate hate hate confrontation…but either the meds I take or the dementia (or some of both) have helped me be stronger and more outspoken. Thus, I was about to have my “first” at my doctor’s office.) By the time he waltzed in, bustling very businesslike, I was ready for him.
“I’ve been waiting a long time,” I said.
“Oh, I thought you were still waiting for a test,” he said (but, of course, he never came back to check…)
“You forgot me, “ I said.
“Well, no.” he replied.
I cut him off and spoke a little louder in my very best teacher voice, “You FORGOT me!”
“Well, yes I did,” sighing, he finally confessed quietly.
There! The truth was out. Now we could go forward. I had won. Well, sort of…
He started to dismiss me when I said, “I’m NOT finished. I have another issue to talk about, one that I told you about last time and you just blew me off.”
He started flying through my folder…MRSA, arthritis, he muttered to himself.
“Yes, the arthritis in my hands,” I stated.
He looked at my hands and said the same thing he had last time; the joints are swollen, etc. He started in with I should use Tylenol…just like he had said last time.
“I’ve been using Tylenol for months. It’s not touching it. I want something stronger, something which will control pain as well as help with inflammation.’
I won’t continue on, but I can tell you that by the time the appointment ended, he would have done ANYTHING to get rid of me. I can remember that he tried to shake my hand as I left and I just bustled by him. I’ve never had an appointment like this! And so went my first time being very assertive at the doctor’s office!
The only thing I would change? I would have shaken his hand, after all we are all human; we all make mistakes. I took the whole thing too personally…
Published On: February 20, 2009