Monday, August 10, 2015

Schedules, Cecil, and Vera

Note: some of the names and/or genders of individuals and/or facilities mentioned in this blog post have been changed to respect their privacy and protect them from retaliation from the social media community. Nouns that have been changed will be marked with an asterisk (*).

The day finally arrived. It was the day that I would finally go see this brand new OB/GYN specialist. I was actually ready for this day, this appointment. But would this day, this appointment be ready for me?

I had to drive around the building yesterday where the specialist was located, just to see if it was accessible by public transit. And by sheer luck, it was. Actually, I only need to take one bus to the center and back. Great, I thought. All I have to do is roll up to the spot, get checked, get a surgery date, and away we go.

If you have been following this blog since its inception, you know by now that's not how shit works in my world, heh.

And if there was any consistency to this latest adventure, it was that the bus was on schedule.
I arrive to the building, where the women's center is located. This building also has an emergency pediatric department and adjacent hospital inside. I somehow missed that as I went looking for the street number "2101." When I first approached the building, it said "1997" on the building structure. Did I get the building address wrong? I thought.

I walk to a building off to the right of this "1997" building, which had a long walkway to get to the entrance. And I see folks carrying backpacks on the walkway, going in and coming out of this building. I look up, and notice that this building was a School of Medicine. I looked for the street number, and then I see "1992." Fuck, now I'm lost.

For readers who do not live in the States, each street (avenue, road, way, place, court, boulevard, parkway, etc.) will have structures on both sides. To find the street number on a particular address, one side will have all even numbers and the other side will have all odd numbers.

In this case, I'm trying to figure out how does "1992" and "1997" exist on one side of the street? And then I look up to the marquis of the School of Medicine.
"School of Medicine. Building erected in 1992."

Good job, Vera, I thought to myself with embarrassment.

At this point, I'm rushing back to the "1997" building, because I realized that the center's structure was built in 1997, not 1997 being the street number. I look around the front of the building, and on the glass door, it reads: "2101".

Well played.

I walked inside to the main reception area for directions to the women's center. After that, I was able to find the women's center and to check in. At least I gave myself enough time to make sure I was in the right place; my appointment was at 10:00am, and it was 9:25am when I told the receptionist I was here to see Dr. Carroll*.

After giving the receptionist my info, she sees something on her computer screen that baffled her. "Yeah, Dr. Carroll is actually next door at the pediatric hospital."

Pediatric? The children's hospital?! I know this dermoid cyst has fat and teeth and shit, but damn, it's on the outside of the uterus, not inside! (Reminder: the social worker from the spa resort made the appointment on my behalf, not me.)

Now armed with directions of where in the pediatric complex I needed to check in, I got there with no problem. This area's receptionist area was split into two categories; on the left was for pediatric checkups for infants and young children, on the right was for OB/GYN services. Except, the folks who were in line for the OB/GYN services were all pregnant. Remind me to send a "thank you" card to that social worker the next time I get paid.

With my sensory overload protection gear in place, I went in and got my vitals checked and all that shit. Got placed into the examination room, sat in a chair and played on my phone, like I always do. A few minutes later, a man walks in. The last I checked, Dr. Carroll had a feminine first name.

"Hi, Vera. I'm Scott O'Reilly*, one of the medical students here working for Dr. Carroll."

Joy.

I gave Dr. O'Reilly my background over the past five months, and during my ranting, Dr. Carroll makes her appearance. As part of his studies, I imagined, Dr. O'Reilly relayed what I ranted about to Dr. Carroll so that she was filled in. After a few minutes, Dr. Carroll instructed me to prepare for a pelvic exam while she and Dr. O'Reilly went to talk to Dr. Carroll's supervisor about what surgical procedure would be best for me.

So I prepared myself to have my poor insides to be investigated. And as I set my clothes down on the chair next to my purse, I sat on the examination bed (I have no idea what it's called, actually). Something on the ground attracted my left eye; it was next to the chair, between the ground and the wall. I looked at it with both eyes, leaning a bit forward from the examination bed.

I had been bugged.
I named it Cecil.

When I see shitheads like Cecil, I tend not to scream (the one time where an unwanted roommate of mine hid in a roll of toilet paper came soaring out while utilizing the latrine was a different story, heh). I mean, shit, a cockroach is a cockroach. I began to wonder where did Cecil come from; did he travel with me, unbeknowns to me, from the apartment? From the bus? Was he a therapy animal on loan to the hospital?

So, since there was nobody but us in the examination room, just Cecil and me, I start giving him some tough talk (while I was still perched on this examination bed, without my clothes). "How the fuck did you get here, you little shit?" "You go anywhere NEAR my clothes, let alone IN them, and I'm beating your ass." "Don't you sashay your antennae at me, young man." Like how a drag queen performer would treat a misbehaving customer.

After about 10 minutes of this banter, Drs. Carroll and O'Reilly come back with some "news."

"Well, Vera, the supervisor wouldn't let me schedule the surgery or do a pelvic exam because I'm a junior specialist," Dr. Carroll frowned (paraphrasing).

I will say this: both Drs. Carroll and O'Reilly treated me with such respect and dignity (unlike some previous doctors *cough*), I didn't feel angry (plus, the medication adjustments work to make sure I didn't get angry).

"The good news is: a senior specialist will see you in two hours from now. And since you've been through so much, the hospital wants to treat you to lunch," Dr. Carroll smiled as she handed me a voucher for $7.00 to enjoy lunch at the building's cafeteria.

"Thank you!" I replied. "Can I get three more dollars because of an unwanted visitor?"

I pointed Cecil out to the doctors. Both of them jumped.

"Probably not," said Dr. Carroll. "Sorry."

And it was fine with me. Free fucking food I'm getting, I thought to myself. So I better shut the fuck up.

With about 90 minutes to waste, I went and grabbed some noms at their cafeteria. When I handed the voucher to the cashier, I was 21 cents short. Thank goodness for my Aldi quarter. So I ate, relaxed, and went back to the complex to be seen by, yet, another doctor. This time, this was Dr. Howard*.

Again, I shared my dilemma over toothy bastard. And Dr. Howard was just as nice as Drs. Carroll and O'Reilly, which was a huge relief for me. 

Dr. Howard explained how both the right ovary and the uterus were actually okay, even though the uterus was off to the right. None of these doctors saw an indent on the uterus, which was good. However, toothy bastard grew; from 6x4x6 cm to 7x5x6 cm. And it had a blood line, meaning the sumbitch was feeding off of me. Fucking toothy bastard evil twin sequel that won't fucking die. So since everything else was okay, I agreed to have a laproscopy done and not a hysterectomy.

There was one catch.

Because my lungs collapsed while I was on the operating table in 2005, I have to see an anesthesiologist first to make sure my lungs don't do that shit a second time. Once I get the okay (the nurse is supposed to call me to make the appointment for the anesthesiologist and schedule the date for the outpatient procedure), then I will have toothy bastard gone. Hopefully.

Vera, all of this could have been avoided if you just went along in the first place.

I don't think so. In fact, I'm glad things are turning out the way they are now. I think all of this is part of a higher power's plan. I let it go.

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