Sometimes I feel as though I'm surrounded by stupid. It's not exactly fun, but it is always funny...just be glad it's happening to me, not you.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Hurry Up and Wait!

Waiting is something one does often when dealing with the military world. I'm not the healthiest person on the planet and have lost a good chunk of my life as a Navy wife to waiting in Naval hospitals. It's the norm to leave a 3-hour block of time for a simple check-up or follow-up appointment. You can imagine how much waiting I have had to do lately, since I have spent the last several months being sick. I've had a kidney infection, pneumonia, mono, and a cancer scare, among other things. My Facebook friends must think I am a hypochondriac.

I'm "waiting" very "patiently."

In November I had two procedures done to see if some questionable cells were cancerous. I was told I'd have results in 2 weeks.
"We'll call you if it's serious, otherwise you'll get a letter in the mail if you're ok."
Well, that seemed kind of silly to me, but ok. I'll wait, and hope for a letter.

Two weeks went by.

Three weeks, no letter, and then four weeks...I called the office, left a message on the machine.

Five weeks have gone by...And I have pneumonia but don't know it and am kind of loopy. I leave another message on the machine. I get sicker and sicker and the importance of the biopsy results are pushed back while I deal with the idiots in the ER who sent me home with a 104+ degree fever and Tylenol. A few days later I am back and I snagged a hard-to-get appointment with my doctor, Dr. D. She orders tests (something the ER did not think was necessary) and discovers there's weird stuff going on in my blood and that I have pneumonia. I'm put on bed rest until a week later when I come back feeling worse, a few more tests from Dr. D and we figure out I have mono, too. Oh, and a sinus infection! Just because, you know, pneumonia and mono weren't enough. I'm taking so many pills that I rattle when I move (which isn't too often) and I have alarms on my phone going off constantly to remind me what to take and when.

My kitchen counter was my own personal pharmacy.

By now I have completely forgotten about cancerous cells. Thankfully, Mother Dearest hasn't, and neither has Auntie LJ. They both get on me to call, and so I do...I start calling every single day. I made 17 calls to two different office numbers between January 1st and 10th, never getting an answer, just a machine...and you know me, of course I have to leave a message every single time.
On January 10th (over 2 months after the procedures were done) I called Dr. D and asked if she could help me find my results. I am promised a call back within 24 hours.

It was on January 11th that I ended my first message to Stupid Central's office with "Talk to you later, answering machine!" and ended my second message of the day with "Well, answering machine, we need to It's not me, it's you. I'm seeing someone else. It's Tony at Patient Advocacy...and Maj. Gen. Caron, who's in charge of most of the stuff at this hospital. Look, we've had a great run! But I just need to move on." *click*

Fifteen minutes later I got a call back.

"We sent out your letter! It says here in the computer it was sent. It must have gotten lost in the mail! And I never heard a voicemail from you until today! Have you already called the PA office? You might want to cancel the appointment, since it was just a mail mix-up..." Stupid Central Lady says.
"Sure, sure. Can you just tell me the results now?" I'm a little more than exasperated.
"Oh, well I can't, but I can have a doctor call you ba--"
"TELL. ME. THE. RESULTS. NOW." I have turned into a large green dinosauresque monster.
"Non-cancerous!!" Her voice is tiny and squeaky. Feel my wrath, Stupid Central!

Another half hour goes by and I get another call from a hospital number. It's Dr. D, calling to tell me she's found out my test results. I told her about the messages I left and my conversation with Stupid Central.
"Ooh, you're cutthroat! I like it!"
Damn right.

A few days later I get this envelope in the mail that I myself. No return address. Confused, I open it and find my test results inside. Check out the postmark date.

Surrounded by stupid.

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