Wednesday, August 18

Surviving...the Dr's Office

So for lack of a "better feeling me," I decided to go see an endocrinologist in hopes that she can help get my hypothyroidism under control. I was first diagnosed in June after my lab results came back that I have an under active thyroid, which has slowed my metabolism down drastically. Not to mention I gained over 25 pounds and am finding that this disease is a little bit harder to manage than I originally thought. Simply taking a Synthroid pill was not going to ease my weight gain, muscle cramps, bloating, depression, and you name it. My primary care doctor must have thought the same too. After lots of thought and thinking about a happier me, I was referred to Dr. S, an endocrinologist.

Honestly, some days I think about why me? Do I really need hypothyroidism now? I already have a daughter with CF isn't that enough? But here I am again, trying to juggle cf and my disease. I thought it was time to tackle it head on.

So, I had to take Madeline with me to the appointment today. It was roughly 20 minutes away, but in DC traffic that computes to 45 minutes at least. Jack has very little days that he can take off for work since he has used so many for Hopkins CF appointments or the recent 5 day excursion to TN for my brother's wedding.

I brought the DVD player for M and arrived there 15 minutes before my scheduled appointment time. Everything seemed okay until....

I found the office and noted that the door stated another doctor in pulmonology worked there. Great. Just great. As if that wasn't enough...

As soon as I open the door, an older woman patient is hacking a lung off. (and to those other cfer's ...i know...I was thinking "well maybe she has cf so it may just be okay." Then realizing that the appointment wasn't for her but her husband AND she was a little too heavy for Cf.

I think I scooted Madeline in her stroller over like every few inches when that woman coughed every minute. It was disgusting. I was angry that she 1) was not covering her mouth 2) reached her body over to talk to M with this NASTY cough 3) wasn't even wearing a mask! I have no tolerance for people who come to dr's like that that don't choose to wear a mask. And to sit and think she wasn't even coming in for her cough...she wasn't the patient!!!

I sat there trying to complete the forms I was given from the receptionist but, my blood was boiling at this point. I couldn't even get myself to write. I managed to complete the forms and inside convince myself to let the receptionist know that I wasn't entirely happy with the situation.
I leaned over the counter and lightly whispered " Are there any pulmonology patients in her at time?" (Solely, in an effort to maintain my dignity and respect for others..if that woman really couldn't help it or wasn't contagious) She looked and shook her head no at me. This is when I leaned in and with everything in me...felt the panic rise. Lately, I am getting better at being honest and myself in situations like this. Little do I care about anyone but M.

I leaned in and said, " See that lady behind me. She is coughing a lot. My daughter has CF and there is little than even 3 feet between us since this room is so small. My daughter cannot be around this and I was hoping that lady would wear a mask. Is there any way that we could sit in one of your waiting rooms away from it? I would really appreciate it. "Then ...(inserted smile).

She said, "The lady behind you in coughing?" Almost like she never noticed...Maybe because she is sitting over 9 feet away from airborne germs. Ewww. I almost shuttered picturing the germs flying everytime she coughed and noted her hand not covering her mouth.

"sure" she replied.."Why don't you go into room 4?" I am not sure if it was my panicked face or that the lady finally understood that I may go postal if we didn't move...but we moved to room 4.

I felt a sense of satisfaction once we got in there...I could ALMOST breathe.

And then the rest is history because we waited for 1 hr and 30 minutes before the doctor came. We had to switch rooms, stop the dvd player- all of which made M more apprehensive. After 1 hr and 30 minutes of sitting in her stroller watching the DVD play over and over she was done.

She screamed, she cried, she kicked as hard and loud as she could. And I could do nothing but allow her too..since I felt the same way.

The doctor was great- once we finally met her and I think she has a plan that may help with my problems. She saw many mistakes that my primary care physician had missed and had not treated me for.

All in all, we ended up leaving 3 hours later, with a very upset toddler.

We survived though. We survived the best from the coughing lady.
Really, this was my triumph of the day.

Cf never does leave your thoughts. Never. Ever.
We both survived.

1 comment:

  1. I KNOW exactly what you are talking about!! I can hear a single cough in a room of 100 people and know exactly where it came from. My eyes and ears go right to the person coughing and it isn't until I mention something about it that others around us even hear it. Super Germ Detection...A gift to CF mom's I guess!

    Anytime we go to a doctors office I request that we do our waiting in an exam room or private room. At first I felt funny asking, but now it's just second nature. I'm like you...I could care less what people think of me as long as I'm doing what is best for Bryce's health. I have even gone as far as having us moved from one table to another in a restaurant to stay away from people who are coughing.

    We do what we have to do...right?! ;)

    Hope this Dr. gets you back on track!


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