Our final doctor appointments…

With a degree of angst we headed out yesterday afternoon with empty stomachs in preparation for blood tests to our last doctor appointments, Tom’s and mine scheduled together for a full hour.  I imagine that most people don’t enjoy going to the doctor, but for me it is a dreaded experience.

Doctor, dentist, Ob-Gyn and optometrist all fall into the same category. I don’t like it, don’t want it, don’t want to take my clothes off, don’t want anyone looking in my mouth or other such places and don’t want to stand on that disgusting scale. No, no, no!

We had to go. Yes, I know, it would be our last appointment for a long while (hopefully). Obviously, I have some type of “issues” around this, a mixed bag of good and bad.  That which makes me diligent, impatient, goal orientated and downright persistent adds to my ability to spend endless hours planning our year’s long world adventure. 

On the flip side, it makes me feel “out of control” to have a stranger poking and prodding at me, obviously looking for something wrong as opposed to something right.  Perhaps everyone feels the same way.  Perhaps the only difference is that I am more vocal about it.

So, off we went to our long time physician Dr. Dennis Showalter of Park Nicollet, a youngish (40″), kind, physically fit and smart man, for our final appointments (except for one more travel clinic appointment for each of us, Tom’s later this week, mine in early October).

Greeted with, “Do you have your insurance card and ID?” as opposed to  a cheerful “hello” never ceases to amaze me. I suppose the job of doctor office assistant is demanding, wrought with frustration.  Answering the endless array of the same questions over and over, accompanied by grumpy comments from ill patients (who also don’t want to be there), pushes them over the edge. 

When calling for an appointment they grumble their name immediately asking, “What’s your name and date of birth?”  I cringe while giving them my age, something I am otherwise not ashamed of, having posted it many times in this blog.  I literally cringe.  Knowing their job is thankless, I go overboard with kindness and thoughtfulness, complying with their every wish.

I refused to go on the scale.  Tom was standing right there, edging me on.  I have weighed myself in front of him at home.  I’m skinny, but still, as a woman, I have the same insecurity about “the number.” 

Tom jumps on the scale with an enthusiastic bounce.  I remind him to take off his “three pound tennis shoes.”  He laughs and says he doesn’t care. Oh, yeah, he’s a guy. His weight was five pounds more than at home naked on the digital scale; heavy jeans, tee shirt, keys in pockets, wallet and those shoes.  “OK, maybe the home scale is accurate after all,” I think.

We’re escorted to a room, blood pressures checked by another rushed assistant and left alone.  Tom squeezes my hand aware of my discomfort. He tells me a joke.  I didn’t get it, a guy joke but I laughed anyway. Maybe I wasn’t paying attention.

Moments later, a light knock on the door and in walks the tall, slender doctor, an example of robust health, warmth in his eyes, hand extended. 

An hour later, a year’s worth of prescriptions on hand to be mailed to CanadaDrugs.com (please see my post as to how we’ll handle prescriptions from afar) for the best pricing. (Tom went from four prescriptions down to one from our low carb, gluten-free, sugar-free, grain-free, starch-free diet over the past year). Doc was impressed at his weight loss.  He didn’t ask me why I didn’t get on the scale.  He knows. 

We meandered off to the  lab down the hall to have “every blood test known to man” for one final check before we go on our year’s long worldwide adventure. One test that we determined to be crucial, in the event of an emergency, was blood typing. This information wasn’t in either of our charts.  Good information to know, just in case.Holding hands, Tom and I left the clinic, smiling from ear to ear, me relieved it was over, Tom was anxious to get home to enjoy the remainder of the day he had taken off work for this appointment.  

Thank you, Dr. S.  Hopefully, in a year, we’ll have our online Skype appointment with him to review of our health and refills. Perhaps, we’ll use our portable travel scale and maybe, just maybe, I’ll weigh myself on it!