The Doctor Is In – – But I’m Out… (of my mind!)


formeAll my adult life I have dealt with a debilitating disorder – – it’s called, “Tell & Show Syndrome.”  Someone will TELL me about a new rare disease and WHAM! – – all the signs of it SHOW up throughout my body.

To say I am highly suggestible is an understatement.  I can read an article in a woman’s magazine entitled, “10 Symptoms You’re Too Shy Too Discuss With Your Male Doctor (But You Should Before It’s Too Late!)”  ~ Immediately I have all 10 plus 4 bonus ones the author wasn’t imaginative enough to think of.  Fear and panic overtakes all my shyness.  I’m gonna grab that Male Doctor right by his shirt color – – I might even consider going to Second base with him for a Second opinion.

I do have a regular physician I call several times a week, and I’m sure the nurses give him messages that go like this – –

“That hypochondriac lady (who resembles a very menopausal Amy Winehouse, minus the tattoos) is on the phone again.  Today she claims when she walks, it feels like thumbtacks/paperclips are poking her feet. Should we advise her to proceed directly to the local office supply store?”

Instead I go to my beloved online medical information mecca – – “The Web MD.”

First of all, it never occurs to me that the word “Web” in their name is a subtle symbolic tip-off that I should stay far, far away.  Let’s think about this, shall we?  Who has webbed feet?  Ducks!  And what do ducks say?  “QUACK!”  Hello??

But this does not deter me from typing, “thumbtacks sticking feet” into the symptom-checker box and obtaining The Diagnosis From Hell.  Four horrific diagnoses, actually.  One relates to my Brain, one relates to my Heart, another to my Lungs, and the final one to my Stomach.   Interestingly, none of the diseases have anything to do with Feet. And all are extremely fatal.

Having gotten C +’s in my Deductive Reasoning classes in high school, I know it isn’t possible that I am afflicted with ALL four of these maladies. That’s only logical, right?  So which one should I eliminate?

Next I do what I always do at 2:00 in the morning – – I log onto a hospital patient message board and post about my situation, asking if someone “out there” has ever experienced a symptom like this but everything turned out to be completely fine?   I stare for hours at my computer screen waiting for anyone to give a reassuring response.  And then it dawns on me . . .

The reason nobody can answer my question.  Everyone who had this same problem has already died.

Should I start writing my Obituary or my Will first?  And Guardians for my precious kids!  Why, oh why couldn’t my ex-husband and I ever agree who to name as caretakers in the event of our deaths??   His sister puts ketchup on eggs, doesn’t believe in orthodontia, plus Danielle Steele is her favorite author.  So what?  I shoulda let all that go.

“Please God,” I bargain, “I know last week I hated this world and said I’d rather be dead than go to the Department of Motor Vehicles to renew my expired driver’s license.  But I promise to find gratitude and renew my zest for life – – just please don’t let me expire!”photo 2-3

There’s nothing left to do.  Except find a brand new doctor who hasn’t heard about my “Boy Who Cried Wolf” past.  My previous doctors have issued, “WARNING: Circus Side Show Freak” bulletins about me to the medical community at large, so this will be no easy task.

Finally I show up on the doorstep of an office in a faraway town.  I watch as their “The Doctor is in” sign lights up.  I’ve always believed first impressions are important so here is how I fill out the paperwork on the clipboard.

 New Patient Form:

NAME:  (circle one)  Miss/Mrs./Ms    I’m divorced so technically it’s “Ms.”  But please call me “Miss” as in “Little Miss Menopause.” Although Mr. may be a distinct possibility these days – –  can you check my testosterone level?

AGE:   I just caught a glimpse of you at the reception desk….I could be your mother big sister.

REASON FOR TODAY’S VISIT?  Look at me!  Isn’t it obvious?  I just need the Dr. to confirm how much time I have.

WEIGHT:  Who cares at this point?   Just order me a size 8 burial gown.  And yes, I’m banking on the fact that loss of appetite will kick in soon with this particular disease.

PROFESSION:  Writer  (Pssssst!  Hot tip:  Publish this form.  Everyone knows a deceased author’s last work commands a high price.)

EVER SKIPPED A PERIOD?  Yes, but I’m working diligently on eliminating my run-on sentences.

WHOM CAN WE THANK FOR REFERRING YOU?  You mean blame?

PERSON TO CALL IN EMERGENCY:  Um…my two ex-husbands will deny knowing me.  Let’s see….My kids will just ask, “what’s for dinner?”  Oh, don’t call the neighbors, they’ll tell you I should have been deceased 8 times already!  Hmmm,  I think you might call Mabel, my hairdresser.  But when you say, “Died”  – –  you better spell it.  She’ll think you mean Clairol Nice n’ Easy Deep Burgundy Brown.

I’m interrupted by the Doctor, who calls me in.  He listens to my heart and pronounces it steady and strong.  I resist the urge to ask when he’s last had his stethoscope calibrated.  I describe how I feel  (this time likening it to feet stabbed with steak knives) but he cuts me off before I can get to the Web MD part.

DR:  Have you ever heard of Transient Paresthesia?

ME:  Oh no, Dr.  Not that!  I don’t even ride a train or bus!

DR:  Not “Transit.”   Transient, meaning Short-Lived.

ME:  Good Lord, you mean I’m gonna go even quicker than I thought?

DR:  Where ya headed to?

ME:  Aren’t I dying?

DR:  We all are.  But I think you’re gonna survive this one.  Transient Paresthesia = Limbs falling asleep.

As I depart, I glance over my shoulder to see him sketching a big-haired woman with the caption, “BEWARE OF CREATIVE BLOGGER WITH TOO MUCH TIME ON HER HANDS….She needs to be cut off ASAP!!”   He then posts it on the WEB MD  website!

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51 thoughts on “The Doctor Is In – – But I’m Out… (of my mind!)

  1. A perfect time to resurrect that “Lydia” moniker you managed to assume in your last post and parade it till it drops (or till the doctors recognise it on their “most un-wanted” list). I live in Tasmania, there are a couple of hundred thousand people on the whole island. We have 4 doctors. I have to change my name on a weekly basis…

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    • hey you – – forgive my menopausal brain fog, but when did I use the name, “Lydia” in a previous post? Ugh…..I really hate turning 50. But let’s have a new inside joke, ok? I am hereby requesting you to try and work in “Tasmania” into every comment you leave. 😉

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  2. Wow, hilarious!

    You know its kindda easy to sketch your death time-table, with all the processes when something outta ordinary happen!

    But when the doc says: ”take this drugs, you’ll get better”

    you’re like ”what?? This is the part where you’re suppose to tell me i’ve got 6 months left…”

    probably, start getting your stuffs ready for a peaceful journey, maybe eat some chochlates and not worry about getting fat! Who cares, i was gonna die soon right??

    Nice to meet you!

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  3. You are too funny! I am SO one of those people that reads about a condition and am sure I have it. (I think I have a list of things that I am pretty sure I am suffewring from!) It was such a pleasure meeting you at Blogher! Now to digest everything!

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    • Hi You! Glad you found your way over here. I think I am now following/subscribing to your blog, at least I signed up to do so – – can you confirm? Back to our heat and having to pay for running the AC, hmmm? I got a lot out of Blogher, but like you say….it’s all still percolating!
      take care,
      Stephanie

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    • Hi Darcy! Glad you stopped in – – I think I signed up to subscribe to your hilarious blog, but maybe you can confirm that I did it right? I haven’t received anything from you yet. Perhaps you’re letting everything coalesce (like I am!) before attempting to post about it. Sheesh – – that was a lot they threw at us….hope some of it sticks!
      Stephanie

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  4. This is so contagiously funny that I’m half-way tempted to be creative the next time I go to the doctor and must fill out a form I’m convinced they never, never look at again.

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  5. Outstanding!
    I notice you resisted riffing on the transient-paresthesia-related symptom of formication. (Note that’s spelled with an M, people!) Of course, I couldn’t resist mentioning it.

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    • Sorry it took so long for me to respond – – blogging conference completely flattened me. Your responses are always beyond clever and if you ever resist mentioning something, I’m gonna get irritated! Thank you.
      Stephanie

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  6. I think you underestimate how many people will claim to know you after you’re gone.

    For example, just tell your ex-husbands that you’ll be bequeathing them something in your will. But don’t tell them it will be an old pair of socks to remember you by.

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  7. Stephanie you are too funny!!! This is why I do not read the side affects to medication. If I do — BAM and next thing you know I’m itching, can’t breathe, have a headache, heart palpitations, my limbs are weary and so on and so on…Ohthe woes of a hypochondriac.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow! I feel as if I hit the jackpot tonight with you visiting my blog and all the wonderful, different comments. I am sorry I’ve been quiet onyour recent posts…. BUT I have been reading! The bags under my eyes are certainly worsening, so I am anxiously awaiting your latest experiment results! I won’t say I am glad you could relate to this because “misery loves company” isn’t so nice but I am glad I am not alone with this level of worry. We can talk one another down! Hugs!

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  8. Actually, I think any doctor would look forward to your visit. It’s got to be the highlight of their day. Immensely entertaining and informative. I’ve deleted my favorites link to WEB MD.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Well, I’ve sure missed hearing from you–what a pleasant surprise! Hope all is well? Yes, I suppose the silver lining to my heightened anxiety is the Dr. gets to amuse people at cocktail parties. Thanks so much for coming here today!
      Stephanie

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  9. This is a riot! You sound just like me when I notice something different on one of us here. I am constantly convinced it’s cancer and of course the internet can help back up any diagnosis you come up with. Oh, it’s a long hard road for us hypochondriacs!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, and the thing is hypochondria is worse with your kids! I cannot tell you how many pediatricians shudder when they see me dragging my child in. One time I was terrified my son might develop SIDS and the doctor actually hooked him up to a machine that had this horrific alarm if his breathing paused. Trouble was, it went off all night long with false alarms so I was in panic mode 24/7. I think that Dr was trying to teach me a lesson about getting too much information.

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  10. So funny! I’m constantly convinced I’ve got something…MS, PTSD, really anything with an acronym. Of course, when you type “exhaustion,” “anxiety,” and headaches into Web MD, it never says “kids.” I’m glad I’m not the only one!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Your comment is hysterical! No fair bring funnier than the blogger…. Lol. And now that we know there are others like us, shall we form some sort of acronym support group?! Thank you for coming here today…. I am honored.

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  11. I will refrain from any suggestions which may in fact end up in some type of syndrome. You certainly hit the funny bone on this one. The new patient form was hilarious and I must say I have had plenty of crazy things entered on that form but none quite like this one. Were you aware that teenagers and lack of sleep can create symptoms like those? Humor is such a great prescription, thanks for filling mine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hmmm, was Amy Jewish? Actually I didn’t know you were either. Well, it used to be Fran Drescher for me. But when Amy overdosed, somehow people decided I looked more like a dead woman. Always grateful for your feedback!

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      • NO WAY!!! When I first came to Cali and still had a heavy NY accent people used to call my sister and I (twins) 2 nannies (cause of Fran Drescher’s TV show. Then right after she died I got Amy Winehouse by the boatload. Yes, Amy definitely Jewish as am I, although using my Catholic husband’s last name does a lot to hide that fact. You are my sister for another mister, you know!! (or something like that!)

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