Tuesday, September 30, 2014

As Soon As Possible

I was lying on the couch, thinking that I should get up because I needed to pee and get a drink of water. Twenty minutes later, I was still on the couch thinking the same thing, only more intensely. Today, I'm dizzy. I'm very dizzy, and my orientation with the world feels off when I'm upright. 'You need to lie down,' a quiet yet insistent voice in my head repeats. Another ten minutes pass. That walk I took yesterday was not a good idea. That short walk, just over a mile, moved too much shoulder. I looked at the water bottle on the coffee table as if staring would make it float to my side. The phone rang. I couldn't get up fast enough. I'm getting a fair bit of exercise in my core by getting up without using my right shoulder, but I still can't leap from the couch like a ninja. It hurts to move my broken shoulder.

Yes, it is only fractured, not broken. Nick keeps reminding me that a fracture is not the same as a break. Kid, when you have a bone chip floating in your shoulder, you can minimize the tingling and the ache and the dizziness that I have had for the past two and a half weeks since I fell.

Have you gotten your MRI yet?, you might ask. Thank you, but no, I haven't been able to get my doctor to give me an MRI yet. I was given a copy of the orders with instructions to wait so the doctor's office could schedule it. After a week of hearing nothing, I scheduled it myself. But when I called to tell them that I'd scheduled it myself, the nurse was annoyed that I had circumvented their usual routine. Oh, I kept the MRI on my schedule, but I still have to wait until this next Friday. Had I already told you that the orthopedic surgeon's office forgot about me for more than a week? I did? Oh, sorry. I'm repeating myself.

Last night, I dreamed that I was floating in the ocean, wishing I could swim fast enough to cross paths with the cruise ship that I'd fallen out of. They had this game where I was supposed to jump really high at the same time that the captain gunned the engine and I was supposed to keep from falling out. Everyone on board was laughing as I rolled into the water and they left me in their wake.

So, this morning, I was still thinking about getting up to pee and to get my water, about thirty-five minutes after I first began to think about it when the phone rang. Remember the phone?

Well, by the time I wrestled with the blanket, threw the pillow onto the floor, kicked the recliner footrest until it clicked into place, levered myself into a standing position, and waited for the wave of dizziness to pass, someone was already speaking to my answering machine.

It was my doctor's office, the ones that first told me I needed an MRI, the ones that sent me to their orthopedic surgeon's office where I was left to wait it out for ten days before I finally scheduled my own MRI. It was them, the doctor who was supposed to care about me the most.

'Oh good,' I thought. 'They're calling to see how I am doing.' Relief washed over me as I thought that they might help me get the process moving more quickly to fix my shoulder.

"Hi!" a cheerful voice began before I could pick up the receiver. "This is Evergreen Family Medicine calling. We have received a notification letter from Xxxxx Gastroenterologists that it is time for you to have a colonoscopy. They tried to contact you but were unsuccessful. So would you please give them a call and schedule an appointment with them as soon as possible."

As my hand hung inches over the receiver, she hung up.

A colonoscopy. As soon as possible. Right.

Thank you for listening, jb


  1. Ooh that sounds terrible..wish you a speedy recovery, Julie.Is it always like this with the health services? Too much pressure or do they just not care...? Hard to tell.Take care...