Friday, September 21, 2007

A Scale, a Shot and a Sub

Confession- - I went to my pediatrician until I graduated from college. Don't judge. (Okay, think of that Friends episode when Ross STILL goes to the pediatrician. Laugh. Okay, keep laughing. Yes it is funny, I know. Hahahaha! Okaaaay. Alight...enough!) He delivered me and all of my sisters and since I only went once every two years it didn't really seem like a huge deal, plus there were plenty of female doctors around if I ever wanted something different. At my 21 year old check-up (you're laughing again) my doctor and I discussed my options and he gave me some recommendations as to who to see now. I picked one and went for the first time last summer. No big deal, a young, female doctor who was very pleasant. Fine. I called in June to schedule another check-up (um, is this what they're called still?!?) with my new doctor but it tunrs out she's on maternity leave. Um, okay... I don't know how I'm supposed to build a relationship with a doctor who's not there, but whatever. I had two choices- - I can wait until JANUARY when she's back or I can see the nurse practitioner. I didn't really want to wait until January so I decided that seeing the N.P. would be fine.

Cut to yesterday. I go into the office and wait for only 5 minutes (WOW!) before a young male something (nurse? doctor? not sure...) says my name. I follow him back to the exam rooms where he takes my blood pressure and measures my height/weight. (doesn't TELL me what they are, just jots them down) then he starts asking me all of these (personal) questions (I know, it's his JOB) but if I wanted to see a male WHATEVER don't you think I would have picked a MALE doctor? So he's all, "I see you have a birthday coming up" and I'm like, "yea, in a couple months" and he's "no, just four weeks- - it's next month!" and I'm, "wow, time flies" and he goes, "sorry, didn't mean to bring up a birthday" and I'm like, "well, I'm only going to be 23 so it's not the end of the world" and he goes, "yea... the birthday that really hit me was 25... just a year ago." OKAY this guy is only about 3 years older than me?????? And he's asking all of these QUESTIONS?!??!!? Creepy.

He leaves me and the N.P. comes in, (remember how I haven't seen her before and I don't know who she is?) turns out I DO know her. She dates someone I know so I've seen her "around" for the past 7 years. She did offer for me to see someone else if I was uncomfortable because we knew each other but it didn't really bother me (and at least she's over 50) so I said not to worry about it. We're chatting and she's writing down all of the "how do I decipher THIS person from the 25 other patients I see a day" information and asking me lots of health history questions:

Her: Do you smoke? Me: Nope.
Her: Drink alocohol? Me: Socially.
Her: Heart problems in the the family? Me: (long explanation)
Her: Cholesterol? Me: Not a problem.
Her: Allergies? Me: None.
Her: Coffee? Me: Diet Coke.
Her: Exercise? Me: yea, I run 4 miles 3 days a week with a longer run on the weekends, teach 6 jazzercise classes a week and usually go to three more.
Her: Wow, that's great. So how does your weight look compared to last year? Me: Oh, I'm not sure... (remember MALE WHATEVER didn't TELL ME!!!!!!?????!!!!)
Her: Well, let's look. (gets out paper that MALE W. scribbled on) Oh, you've gained three pounds. Me: (dumbfounded. staring... shock...)
Her: I'm sure it's all muscle, you look fantastic. Me: (dumbfounded. staring...shock...)
Her: Dairy? Me: (staring...) at least one yogurt/day and usually ice cream, milk in my cereal.
you get the point....

We're getting to the end of the visit and she inquires about the HPV vaccine that regular doctor prescribed me last year. I explain that because it was so new last year I was uncomfortable getting it but now that it's been a year and I still have the prescription I'm going to do it. She explains that NOW they stock the vaccines in the office so if I'd like to do it today she can have the nurse come in and do it. Fine. It saves me going back and scheduling another appointment. She says goodbye and the nurse comes in to give me my shot. I don't remember the last time I had a shot but I think it was the summer before I went to college when you have to get that series (for meningitis??!). Anyway, I have an extremely high tolerance for pain. Usually NOTHING bothers me, I'm not squimish, I have never once cried when I got a shot or my finger pricked. I played tennis for an entire season on a fractured footbone and refused to see the trainer because I knew he would tell me I had to take the rest of the season off. No. Thanks. Stupid? Perhaps, but it's what was important to me and my foot healed just fine in the off season. You get the point. Well, this lady puts the needle into my arm and I don't flinch, I'm not even worried about it. Then she starts to inject the vaccine... I thought that I was going to pass out, throw up and burst into tears at the same time. It was the most painful experience I have had in a LONG time. I'm not sure what the difference was this time, but I could actually FEEL the liquid move up my shoulder, down my arm and into my fingers. I survived (barely) but today it feels like I got hit in the arm with a baseball bat swung by Big Papi. My arm freaking HURTS.

I did however stop at Subway on my way back to work yesterday after the appointment and got myself a footlong sub and a large diet coke. Hey, I deserved it.



Blogger Paige Jennifer said...

I totally knew I had outgrown my peditrician halfway through college when I went in over Christmas break with a terrible sinus infection. I sat there on the chair, looked up and was staring at a poster of Ms. Piggy bedecked in purple and straddling a motorcycle.

5:26 PM  
Blogger suburban prep said...

So sorry you had that experience. My internist is a woman and well she is maybe a few yrs younger than me. She has gone on maternity leave twice since I have been with her.
I used to get allergy shots growing up. My mother is a nurse so she gave them to me.
I am used to needles and shots because I have been in the hospital for DVT.
Each time I went in the hospital I had to have a blood thinner in my stomach. Trust me this stuff burnt on the way out. I would almost cry each time I had to have it (twice a day). I haven't had in about a year now. My mother had it recently because she had her knees replaced and she stated that it was very painful on the way out as well.

5:53 PM  
Blogger hot potato said...

i loved my pediatrician, but i think i was around 14 when my sister and i stopped going. what an experience you had. healthcare professionals close to your age or healthcare professionals who are acquaintances can be uncomfortable. you had both!

i am glad you rewarded yourself.

7:05 PM  

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