Today, at 7:30 am, I was at the doctor's office. Nothing is wrong. It was one of those annoying, time consuming but necessary yearly wellness physicals. I was there for two hours.
The worst part of this entire thing was the wait. I am not ill. But most of the folks in that waiting room were. And what seemed to me to be the sickest of them all came and plunked herself in the chair next to me. She was a young woman, maybe in her early twenties, sort of dirty looking and fairly unkempt. And she hacked. She coughed, she wheezed, she gagged, she sounded like a chain saw. She groaned and sighed and sniffled and wiped her nose on her sleeve. And I thought to myself, there should be a law against these people sitting in a doctor's public waiting room! But she was called in to see the doctor and then I felt better, though I did think of asking the receptionist for a can of lysol.
And then it was my turn to be seen.
Dr. Paulk has been our family doctor for years. He's thorough and strict and his bedside manner is awesome. You come away feeling like you've had a visit with a friend. Well, usually. Today I left without feeling that way.
He checked me out from head to toe. He always does. This is what he found:
blood pressure; good.
On and on and on. Dr. Paulk knows me..and my body..inside and out. He knows I work. He know I work out. And this is what he told me..
"How often to you go to the gym now?"
I tell him I try to go at least three days a week.
"I want you to start going every day and if that's not feasible, at least four days a week. I want you to stay on the treadmill for at least 30 minutes daily."
Now, I'm wondering, why is he saying this to me? So I ask him and he answers, "Because as we age we need to stay as active as we can. And the thinner the better."
Now I feel insulted. But I don't tell him that. Now I just want to go home and lick my wounds. But does he send me home? Nope. He sends me to the lab for blood work. (nothing wrong, just routine blood work.) So. I go sit in the lab chair and and this big guy with a brushcut comes and wraps a little rubber hose just above my elbow.
"Wow!' he says. "You have great veins! That vein there is just sticking right out for me." I turn to look at what must be an extraordinary protruding vein and as I do so, I inadvertently lift my arm and poke myself with the needle he is holding.
"Ouch!" he says.
Why's he yelling ouch? I'm the one who got poked!
Soon he has his blood from my incredible vein and he has taped a large wad of cotton into the crook of my elbow. And then he leads me to a little window where some elderly lady awaits my money.
And I'm thinking, I felt wonderful before I cam here. And now I feel horrible. Plus I might come down with a hacking, coughing, sniffling horrible cold from that infectious person in the waiting room. And then I had to pay for this.
My conclusion is that going to the doctor can make you ill.
Week Three Summary
3 years ago