I’ll Tell You What To Do
OK, officially, this is what the doctor said:
Actually, I don’t really know what the doctor said. I didn’t go back for the results of the tests. My sister, however, works there in that office, and the doc told her that I need to chill a bit. The universe must be in agreement, because here it is the end of August in North Carolina and instead of 100 degree temps we’re enjoying the mid-to-high 80s.
Is that doctor good, or what?
Seriously though, my heart (which is what I was really worried about) seems reasonably strong for a guy pushing 50 who sits on his rear all day just peckin and clickin, with a 39 year history of tobacco (ab)use. The lungs, well, they aren’t in such great shape. We’re talking an advanced stage of emphysema which was clearly evident in the x-rays even to me. In short, my lungs look like bubble wrap. In a strange twist, I don’t show many of the signs of such an advanced case. My blood oxygen is better than most non-smokers at 98%, my blood pressure clocked in at 92 over 60 and all the other tests returned results in the ‘normal’ range. I don’t have uncontrollable (or even ‘controllable’) coughing fits.
Doctors and Such versus Me
By far, the most stressing thing about this ordeal was the stress test. I have a serious phobia when it comes to people who hold doctorates in any discipline, especially in any of the medical sciences. Especially them. And the people who work for them. Especially the people who work for them. You may wonder why?
Because they lie. Since getting out of the military, every single time I’ve been to a ‘doctor’ or a ‘dentist’, I’ve received what I consider to be either substandard treatment or else been outright lied to about the treatment and/or the condition. In my developed opinion, these guys are to be trusted less than politicians or lawyers or religious clergy. To all of you who work in these fields, I offer no apology. What I have experienced is what I have experienced, and nothing you can say or promise will change my perception of your career field or how you, personally, conduct your professional affairs.
For instance, the reason I didn’t go back for the results? Because these guys lied to me about the stress test. First they tried to say that the doctor misinterpreted something (that should make me feel better?). Then they tried to tell me that they had called me and told me the correct procedure(They called twice: once to tell me to call if I had any questions, but that the person I needed to talk to about my questions would be out of the office until the day before the procedure, and second, an automated call to remind me of the appointment). Finally, they tried to tell me I should have called them to make sure they had told me the truth.
At no time did they ever admit to the truth, which was that they told me something that was not true. They told me that I would not have to have an injection, knowing in advance that I would not agree in advance to any injections for any reason. And not once did they offer a real apology. (Telling me that you’re sorry I misunderstood is NOT an apology.)
Yeah, I let’em stick me, knowing that my body wouldn’t react the way they said it would. Knowing that they lied when they said it would not have any effect on me at all and would be flushed out of my system within 48 hours. (Forgive the graphics here, but my bathroom time was very disrupted for about 6 days.) I wanted the results of the stress test, and they wouldn’t perform it without the injections.
But the end result is this: they proved my fears to be well-founded and correct. And I will never again voluntarily subject myself to any medical personnel in the future, for any reason, regardless of who asks or begs for it. They are nice people at home, I am sure. But they are exactly who I thought they were in the office, self-assured and overconfident. Conceited, even, thinking their medical prowess so great that they can manipulate PEOPLE into doing what they want ‘for the person’s own good’.
These medical professionals made me feel used, unimportant, and angry. They mocked my intelligence, my ability to research and understand the material I researched, and, in general, my entire philosophy concerning how I live my life.
What is it about some people, that they think and feel that they know what is best for someone else? I know what’s best for me, and I can guess at what is best for people I know well, but there is practically no way I can know what’s best for someone I have just met. And even if I thought I knew, I wouldn’t use lies and trickery to get them to do what I wanted.
I am Jon, not a doctor, but not an idiot, either. (Nevertheless, I am taking steps to reduce or eliminate stresses in my life.)