Wednesday, October 12, 2016

False Assumptions Plus Other Crap

Yesterday, perhaps because I was already so anxious that I was having to remind myself to breathe, I decided to call a doctor's office that was recommended to me by a friend. The friend went to this doctor who is young and she said that he listened, he asked her about her gut feelings, she liked him. Now, it's no secret that I've been dissatisfied with my own practitioner for awhile so I sent a form from the internet in to ask for an appointment to meet with the doctor. Somehow, that seemed easier than calling although I knew I was going to have to talk to someone on the phone eventually.
While this was going on, I googled "intense phobia of doctors" and discovered that there is an actual name for what I have which is Latrophobia.

"Latrophobia is defined as the morbid and irrational fear of doctors or hospitals. Again, this does not refer to those who simply do not like these places, but rather those who are deathly afraid of them. Furthermore, people with Latrophobia fear doctors and hospitals, but also anything associated with them."

Being a person who actually takes routes which allow me to avoid driving by the hospital, I feel I probably qualify for that one. 

So. Anyway, I had a message from the office when I got back from town asking me to call for an appointment, that the doctor was indeed taking new patients. To call before 5:00 p.m. 

Already redlining in the anxiety department, I called and got a recording that they were busy talking to other patients and to leave my name and number and they would call back as quickly as possible. 
This was around quarter to four. 
I waited around the house for awhile even though I had things to do outside and needed to take the trash and finally said fuck it and went and did what I needed to do and no one called back while I was outside. I hate to give people my cell number as an actual calling number because I don't get reception in the house and it all just gets too confusing because they do call it while I'm in the house and then I have to go outside to take the call or ask if I can call them back from my landline and, and, and...

So. This morning. 8:00, I'm still in bed and the phone rings and of course, it was the office calling me back. 

The woman who made the call apologized for waking me up but said that I'd been the last call of their day yesterday so I was the first to be called this morning. 
Seriously? It took longer than an hour and forty-five minutes to make a phone call? 
From the office?
Then the woman kept calling me "sweetheart." 
It's eight a.m., I am barely awake, I am 62 years old and I am being called "sweetheart" by a complete stranger. I told the woman I thought that this was inappropriate and I did not want to be called "sweetheart" by her. 
"Oh," she said and then she proceeded to call me that several more times.
Once, when she did it, I simply went silent. And she didn't get it. She did not get it. 
I should have just said forget it right then, but did not and have actually set up an appointment for the end of November. She asked for my insurance information, of course, and date of birth. After I gave her that, she seemed to think that not only would it be okay to call me sweetheart, but to assume that I was not only elderly but also no doubt confused and demented and probably couldn't find my way to their office without help. 
"Just call us if you can't find us!" she said. 
Uh. Okay. 
So now I was pissed. And then, when we went to end the conversation she told me to "have a blessed day!" in that chirpy, fucking Christian way that pisses me off so much that I can't even stand it. 

Yeah. I doubt I'll be going to that appointment. I mean, the doctor may be great but his receptionist and I are not a good match.

I don't know. 
God, I need a doctor I feel comfortable with. 
Is there even such a thing? 
I doubt it. 

But I've taken my walk and now I'm waiting on the appliance repairman to come and check out my washer. My husband just called and made me cry by asking if he could take me to Apalachicola this weekend. I SO want to go, to get away, to be with him but I've been afraid to even talk about it, knowing that this is hunting season and he is eager to be up in Georgia at the camp as much as possible, getting things ready. I DON'T want to make him feel guilty about doing something he loves so much. We are getting older and who knows how long we'll be able to do the things we love, especially those things requiring physical exertion? But I do start feeling a bit low on the totem pole of priorities this time of year and so, when he asked if I'd like to go and spend the weekend with him, I did cry a little. 

"Yes, yes," I kept saying. "So very much. Thank you."

And I am looking forward to that with great anticipation. To get away, to go away, to just be with him with none of our chores or duties or obligations. 

So. There you go. That's me today, being pissed (which is a great antidote to anxiety, let me just say) and being grateful. 

Now. Let's see what Repairman Guy says. He answers his own phone and I have a strong feeling he's the only employee of his own company and I can work with that. I told Lily yesterday that he sounded sort of grumpy when I talked to him because he was on a repair and had to walk out to his truck to get his schedule and she said, "Maybe that's a good thing. Maybe he's so good that he can afford to be grumpy."

And he didn't tell me to have a blessed day so he's winning at phone skills. 

There you go. The tea olive is blooming and the air is perfumed and the squirrels are fussing from the trees and the leaves sound rusty in the breeze and I'm going to go clean out the hen house.

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. I love that - "being pissed, which is a great antidote to anxiety" - so true. Crossed fingers that the repair man knows his stuff.
    A little vacation, yes! that's what you need.

  2. I'd add in that your brutal sense of humor should also be called upon to deal with the goofy receptionist. Push on through her and see that doctor with the good recommendation. When I think about all the nurses and docs who've called me "Mom" or worse, "Mommy," I get pissed and anxious, but then I realize how stupid it all is, push on through and write about them. I love you.

    1. I love you too. Thank you, dear Elizabeth.

    2. It's a pet peeve of mine, Elizabeth - I can't read books and articles that refer to 'Mum' and 'baby'. Mommy is ever worse. Bleh. I second the brutal sense of humor though :)

  3. well, from my personal experience anger is a great way to avoid other things you'd rather not feel. OK for the angry person, not so much for the one on the receiving end who isn't responsible for the anger. not that I think you rage at people to avoid facing things.

    1. I don't do that any more- rage at people to avoid facing things. But I certainly have done so in my life and I look back and feel awful about it because it was always someone I loved. Almost always, anyway.

  4. Don't worry about the receptionist. See the doctor. He/she might be worth it. And if not, then you never have to endure being called sweetheart by that receptionist again. And I love Lily's perspective on the repair guy! Haha

    1. You're right. You are so right. But I tell you what- being told to have a blessed day gripes my nerves more than being called "sweetheart."

  5. "Have a blessed day"? The fuck? That is one of the many things I like about where I live. That shit wouldn't fly. We are way too politically correct. I want to go out now and say that to people just to gauge their reaction. My guess it would go between a look of bafflement and being told to fuck off. Or laughter.

    PS - My tattoo is going to say "breathe". I need to remind myself.

    1. It's a common thing around here. People say it all the time. I fucking hate it. I should just...breathe...and let it go.

  6. Make yourself a homemade " I am a sweetheart" badge and wear it next time you go

    1. Or an 'I'm not your sweetheart' one ;)

    2. Or one that just says "Sweetheart" with a big red line through it.

  7. You may want to see the doctor to see if he is a good match for you.

  8. Have a blessed day. Wow.

    Though, you know, I have to admit, the way you say hello in Irish translates as 'the blessings of God be on you'. Dia duit, or 'God on you' in short. Which is equally extreme, but bothers me less, for some reason. The response is Dia 's Muire dhuit, which means the blessings of God *and* Mary on you. Mhhm. Maybe once it was Pagan before it wass Catholic, I do not know.

    I am thinking that Mr Moon is very wise - he knows his time is worth €300 and so he was right to get someone else to fix the machine. Same way he knows you should go away for the weekend with that precious time. Clever man :)

    1. Or Pogue Mahon(spelling) which I think is Kiss my arse.

      Mary there is such a thing as a doc that you can feel confortable with. It is a rare thing. I found one It took me over 60 years. I dread the day he leaves! I hope to be dead before then. He doesn't look old enough to have left school. Some of the receptionists are awful but he is worth it. I adore him and I tell him so and he tells me I am unique. Try the doc particularly as you have a recommendation from someone who has actually seen him. Maggi x

    2. And for some reason, the phrase in Spanish, "Vaya con Dios" doesn't bother me at all. That means go with God. I'm likely just a big old hypocrite.
      You inspire me with your own doctor story. Thank you.

    3. I think everything sounds better in Spanish or Italian.

      Glad my doc inspires. He is amazing. Friendly kind caring. Young handsome. Has a small pic of his wife and kids and a massive pic of his beloved dog in his office. Copes with my fear of docs and ranting about doctors past and present and the state of our once magnificent healthcare. He fought tooth and nail against useless docs at hospital to get me the treatment I needed and then the meds that kept me going that I was refused by the 'scum' (is the only word I can think of) running our crumbling NHS. These docs are out there. I promise.

      It is Pogue Mahone missed the e off and it is kiss my arse in case you need it in the future. There is an Irish pub in Liverpool with that very name. I wish I could take you there. Maggi x

  9. I vote for the "I am not your sweetheart" pin.

  10. I know how hard it is to find a doctor that you feel comfortable with. In my 62 years I found one...a woman. She actually listened ! I hadn't had her long when she moved her practice about an hour away. There was no way I could go that far with my agoraphobia. So I pretty much quit going to doctors, except when I had to get my anti-anxiety pills. He was a smart ass jerk who didn't listen to a word I said....but he filled my scrip.

    Since this doctor was recommended by a friend, maybe you should give him a try. Just ignore the idiotic receptionist as much as possible ! I hope I'm not overstepping my bounds by giving you advice...I mean, you don't even know me. But I feel your pain in trying to find the right doctor...especially when it comes to dealing with anxiety issues.
    Glad you got your washer fixed !

    1. I've been going to women for years in the belief that I'll feel more comfortable with them but it hasn't proven to be true. I think that it's probably a matter of the individual rather than the gender. Which...duh. Right?
      At this point I'd put up with a smart ass jerk who filled me a scrip. I swear I would.

  11. Oh, ugh. No one has ever said to me "Have a blessed day," at least not that I can remember, but if they did I think I might throw up. As for "sweetheart," I can understand that she might unknowingly say that to you once -- but to say it more than once, after being asked not to? Hmmmm.

    1. Yeah- AFTER I asked her not to. I mean...who does that?
      And if you still lived in Florida, you'd have had your day blessed. Trust me.


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