Welcome To The Stage, Ma’am-O-Gram!

, , , , , , | Healthy | December 20, 2019

During my regular mammogram, the doctor saw a lump that they wanted better images of, so I went to the clinic for the diagnostic mammogram follow-up. In my mid-forties now, I used to be an exotic dancer years ago, and I’m not exactly shy.

The nurse was getting me prepped for the diagnostic mammogram. This involved a couple of magic marker lines for orientation. She also applied some kind of metal sticker to point to the area of interest.

She turned to put a note in the file and told me, “Give me two shakes and we’ll get this done and over with.”

Odd directions… but I gave her my best shimmy, making sure that the sticker stayed attached to my swinging breasts.

She laughed so hard that she dropped her pen and needed a minute to recollect her professional cool.

Apparently, she meant the phrase “in two shakes of a lamb’s tail,” meaning, “in a short time.” She wasn’t expecting a show!

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Emergency Services Needs To Address This Issue

, , , , , | Healthy | December 18, 2019

(Leaving the fast-food drive-thru window, I am overwhelmed with a wave of nausea and dizziness. I manage to pull across several parking spaces and wait, hoping I’ll feel better. I don’t. I think I might pass out, and wish I’d throw up because that might make me feel better. Clearly, I can’t drive, and I have no idea what was wrong. Dizzy, scared, and disoriented, I call 911.)

911: “911! What’s the address of your emergency?”

Me: “I have no idea. I’m at the [Fast Food Restaurant] on the corner of [Highway] and [Cross street].”

911: “But I need a specific address.”

Me: “I can’t give you a specific address. I’m in pain and scared. I’m at–” *repeats cross streets* “Please help me!”

911: “We cannot help you without a street address, ma’am.”

Me: *losing my cool completely* “Okay, start at the hospital. Drive north on [Highway] a few blocks. When you get to [Major Store], look to the east, to your right. You will see [Fast Food Place] with a car parked across several spots. That’s me!”

(Funniest thing, they did find me! It turned out to be a kidney stone.)

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No Judgements, But Your Spanish Sucks

, , , , , | Healthy | December 17, 2019

A buddy of mine told me this story. He is at the courthouse to pay a parking ticket when a woman approaches him and asks him, in Spanish, if he would help translate for her. My friend only speaks rudimentary Spanish, but he figures it is just filling out the paperwork, so he says yes.

The woman leads him to a window and tells the clerk, “This is my translator.” The clerk directs them through a door. It turns out to be an office. The man in the office at the desk introduces himself as a judge.

At that point, my friend is very confused and quickly asks the judge what exactly is going on. Turns out, the woman is here to dispute a ticket and they don’t have a translator on the grounds. They called someone, but he won’t be in until that afternoon, and the woman doesn’t want to wait. So, she went out and found the nearest Spanish-speaker on her own.

My friend then tries to tell the judge about the misunderstanding and that his Spanish isn’t the best. The judge only looks at him and says, “Did you tell her you would help her?”

My friend says yes.

The judge replies, “Well, then, if you said you would help her, you’re going to help her.” My friend just sits there, astounded, while the judge launches into the questioning.

Luckily, there’s a happy ending. It turns out the woman was in the subway with her baby, and unbeknownst to her, the baby dropped a toy. A policeman nearby then wrote her up on a ticket for littering — yes, really! Of course, the judge thought it was stupid and dismissed the ticket, so it was all over in less than thirty minutes.

But my friend still can’t believe the judge insisted!

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Deck The Halls With Bouts Of Nausea

, , , , | Healthy | December 16, 2019

I have chronic nausea. I take a prescription nausea medication to keep it under control so I can eat and function. The nausea is related to stress, as well as my diagnosed depression and anxiety.

Six days ago at the time of writing, two days before Thanksgiving, my grandmother, who has to handle most phone calls for me due to my hearing issues, called the pharmacy to request a refill of my meds because I was almost out. Later, we got a call telling us that the refill request had been denied because my doctor’s office said I had to see the doctor before I could get a refill. I called the doctor the next day and was told that they had sent in an approval, but they would send another one to be sure.

Pharmacy still said they had no approvals, only a denial.

Thanksgiving came and the office was closed. I checked the pharmacy again, and they still said they only had a denial and couldn’t fill it.

Black Friday, same deal, but we got a call from someone at my doctor’s office informing us that they’d be closed until Monday. I only had enough of my meds to get me through Black Friday. I ended up skipping my second dose so I would have one for Saturday morning, and was unable to eat dinner on Friday.

Same deal with the pharmacy on both Saturday and Sunday. No approvals received, only one denial, and they still couldn’t fill it even though I was unable to eat or drink without it at this time. I even got on the phone myself and cry and beg the pharmacist to give me an emergency three-day supply that the law allows, and was told no because of the “denial.”

This morning, Cyber Monday, after going the entire weekend feeling like I was in Hell since eating was pretty much impossible, my grandmother called my doctor’s office to set up an appointment for the first time slot they could fit me into today.

She was informed that they absolutely did not send in a denial, I did not need to see my doctor before getting a refill, and that their system says I don’t have to see my doctor for a refill on my medication until sometime next year. My doctor knows that I need the medication every single day to be able to eat, and I’m about twenty pounds underweight right now due to stress-induced illness that lasted for three months solid, so I need to be able to get a refill at any time until I gain some weight back.

It turns out that someone at the pharmacy put it on my file that they were sent a denial and got no approvals whatsoever. A few hours ago, I got a text saying that I had a prescription ready for pickup, which would be done first thing in the morning because we couldn’t get to the store.

I have filed a complaint with corporate for the store the pharmacy is in, and my complaint has been forwarded to the store manager with the assurance that the incident will be investigated and that this absolutely should not have happened. The person I conversed with — via chat — was horrified about it.

I hope that pharmacist gets fired and feels proud of themselves for giving a disabled woman no less than five panic attacks over the course of three days and causing her a lot of unnecessary stress that has likely set back her recovery from illness. I won’t be able to fully enjoy Christmas with my family now because I’ll still be recovering and having trouble eating much food.

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Just Another Kidney Stoner

, , , , | Healthy | December 15, 2019

(I have a massive kidney stone trying to pass. I’m in the hospital, waiting for surgery to reduce the size. I suddenly have massive pain, bad enough my vision goes fuzzy. I’m crying, unable to really form words. I press my call button. After a moment, a nurse comes in.)

Nurse: “Can I help you?”

Me: “Pain… bad…”

Nurse: “On a scale of one to ten?”

Me: “Ten!”

(Because of the pain, I practically shout the number.)

Nurse: “You don’t need to raise your voice! I’ll get you something!”

(She leaves and comes back a minute later with a pill.)

Nurse: “Here’s some Tylenol.”

(All I can do is look at her, since that won’t be anywhere near enough for how my pain is.)

Nurse: “Well?! Take it!”

Me: “Need more…”

Nurse: “Ugh, you’re probably just a drug seeker! I’m not giving you anything else!”

(At this point, I just break down sobbing. She storms out. A few minutes later, my doctor comes in.)

Doctor: “Are you okay?!”

Me: “Pain bad… help…”

Doctor: “Okay, sweetie, I just need to know if you can tell me what number you’re at.”

Me: “Ten…”

Doctor: “All right. Do you want me to wait here while I have someone bring you medication?”

Me: “Please!”

(She does stay with me. After she calls the pharmacy, she holds my hand and talks to me to calm me back down. Once the medication is brought up and put into my IV, she makes sure it starts working.)

Doctor: “Your nurse said you were asking for drugs?”

Me: “No, I pushed my call light and told her I was in pain. She yelled at me saying that’s all I wanted and then left.”

Doctor: “She apparently thought you were faking something to get pain meds for an addiction. There’s no way you could fake a kidney stone on the imaging results. I’ll make sure you don’t have to deal with her anymore.”

(True to her word, I didn’t see that nurse for the rest of my stay.)

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