WARNING: NOT SAFE FOR THE WEAK-STOMACHED, OR FOR ANYONE WHO IS (BLISSFULLY) UNAWARE OF "GIRLY" THINGS, i.e. WOMEN'S ISSUES
I had made an appointment to see a nurse practitioner about some *abnormal* menstrual bleeding. I had been told that I needed to be seen sooner, rather than later regarding this issue. I received a call this morning informing me that my appointment had been cancelled due to the NP calling out sick. Did I want to reschedule for same time next week?
Are you fucking kidding me? I've been told By Your People that I need to be seen SOONER rather than Later. Who can see me TODAY?
Spoke with several different appointment-takers. Regaled them all with my tale of symptoms, issues, and history. FINALLY got an appointment for a phone consultation with an OB-Gyn MD, because *abnormal* menstrual bleeding needed a Doctor, not a Nurse Practitioner. Whatever. I'm not the one who determined who I should have seen today. I'm a new patient in your system. I don't exist in your system yet. Get me an appointment. Whatever.
The doc called three minutes before the hour "window" I was given to expect her call. She asked all of the right questions, listened to all of my answers, and informed me that, if she didn't have hospital hours today, she wanted to see me. She was going to have someone call me to make that appointment. FOR TODAY.
An hour later, I called the last number, and spoke with yet another appointment-taker. Regaled him with this morning's history; he put me on hold, and then came back to inform me that the specified person was just about to call me back. Okay, um?
Five minutes later, Angela calls me, and after clarifying with the doc all the things we were hoping to accomplish today, came back to give me a few options for appointments today. I'll take Door #1, Monty. 2:20 today. Get me in. SOONER rather than Later.
fast-forward: now that I have Affordable Health Care in Los Angeles, the "system" has to find a way to get more money out of me. My doc's office only has incredibly expensive parking options. I take the first space I can find, get checked in, go move my car out of the "first 15 minutes free" space to pull into the correct parking deck, only to discover the price-gouging is a common theme. With the assistance of a pedestrian, I find an unlimited free parking space designed for my TARDIS (bigger on the inside means small on the outside). Yay!
Make my way back into the office, and everyone with whom I interact is pleasant, efficient, professional, etc. The doc is a lovely woman who feels like she knows me before she even shakes my hand. She talks to me and listens, as if I know what I'm talking about regarding my own body, and I get the distinct impression that if I didn't understand anything she was saying, she'd rephrase indefinitely until she was sure I did.
Most comfortable Pap Smear I've ever had. She does an ultrasound to check the thickness of my uterine walls (to make sure that *abnormal* bleeding wasn't fibroids or tumors or pre-cancerous cells or anything bad). She shows me everything on the ultrasound. I act like I know what the fuck she's showing me, partly because I'm at a not-so-great angle and because I'm nearsighted, and partly because I get the impression that if I don't understand what she's showing me, she'll take additional time to explain it, and I'm in an awkward position, lying there with an ultrasound wand up my cootch. She's very pleased to tell me:
1. My cervix is "beautiful". That's right, that is the word my Gyno used.
2. My uterine lining is "perfect". Again, she really used that word.
So she sent me out to get my Depo shot, my labwork, and a mammogram. Because I'm there; might as well treat this day like One Stop Medical Shopping.
The nurse who gives me my shot doesn't say anything specifically validating, but she seems pleased that I know exactly how to get ready for this, and also that I'm not going to pass out (like some of her patients do - WHAT?)
The phlebotomist for the labwork seems pleased that I want to know what each of the vials of blood is testing. Also,
3. My vein is "juicy". In fact, it's one of the "juiciest" veins she's seen all day.
We have a very pleasant conversation, and I wish her "all the juicy veins" to fill up her Tuesday.
Then the mammogram. This is NOT a "comfortable" procedure. I don't care who you are. But the technician is an artist, like a photographer of still life, arranging apples and bananas and raisins. I compliment her on her technique, and she tells me
4. My breasts are "great".
Seriously. I've received compliments on my appearance before, but usually not for these particular body parts, and NEVER in these circumstances. I almost want to go back on a semi-regular basis, just for the mental boost!
What's the weirdest way YOU have ever received validation?