I may not always follow the letter of the law when it comes to my health. I have been guilty of eating things that are more processed than my hair after it has been freshly dyed. I have been known to imbibe in some alcoholic beverages which is frowned on….depending on which new study you read. And I have been culpable of using over-the-counter nasal sprays that wreak havoc on my blood pressure.
Thankfully I am not a hypochondriac and I only take up space in my doctor’s office when I truly have a medical issue or need a prescription refilled. The moments are few and far between that I will put myself through the painstaking process of arriving considerately early at the office, getting in exceedingly late for my scheduled appointment and then feeling like I am taking up too much of my physician’s time by asking questions.
It took me a while to warm up to my doctor’s “desk-side” manner but I truly appreciate the fact that she does not sugar-coat her curative banter. I have had my share of real health issues that warranted a trip to the hallowed dominion of her office and I came out wondering if there were a few chapters in her medical books that other doctors had not been privileged enough to read.
I had a severe case of Pneumonia two years ago that could have possibly been diagnosed as a lung infection. I had been so sick that I purposely subjected myself to a walk-in clinic…..in the middle of the afternoon…….on a Saturday. After being prescribed a drug that made me feel like I had been chronically licking a tire-iron for a week, I made an appointment to follow up with my doctor.
I was given the good news that the intensely strong medication had its desired effect and my lungs sounded relatively normal. During the course of my regaling her with my intermittent trips to the office while sick with Pneumonia she casually expressed a few primitive medical terms, obviously from the book that only she received in med school.
The first archaic phrase was uttered and I was called an “idiot”. This is a much shorter version of the 19th Century diagnosis that was identified as a “profound intellectual disability”.
Approaching with caution, I summoned up the courage to then mention the truthful number of times I had been to the office, and out in public, during my illness and I was then diagnosed as “stupid”. I have since examined an alternate medical journal a little more closely and found that analysis of my symptoms to be defined as Fecal Encephalopathy which, roughly translated, means “shit for brains”.
I have always held on to the hope that my doctor has remained on the cutting edge of technology, that she is one of the few rural doctors that truly has her finger on the pulse of modern medicine. What I had not prepared myself for was the fact that she was reverting back to honest medicine and just calling a spade a spade.