“I couldn't live a week without a private library
- indeed, I'd part with all my furniture and squat and sleep on the floor
before I'd let go of the 1500 or so books I possess.” ― H.P. Lovecraft

Whistling In The Graveyard

Friday, May 16, 2008

K, you might not want to read this one.

So I had a doctor's appointment in Morgantown yesterday.

Actually, I'm getting ahead of myself.

Remember that CAT scan I had a couple months ago?

Wait, that's too far ahead too...

Remember that fucking surgery I had last fucking August that was supposed to fix all my fucking problems?

I get it done and the next day. The NEXT DAY, they make me get up and walk. Yes, I know, I had to get up and walk, but Christ, I had a goddamn two-foot hole in me. Can you give me a goddamn DAY?

Apparently not.

The pain, even through the morphine, was exquisite.

I get about three steps down the hall and I feel something pop.

The last time I had something pop in my midsection all this horseshit started, so I head back to my bed and tell the nurse who said “Well he's sure moving fast NOW.” to gargle my fucking urine sample.

I didn't realize the significance of that pop.

Anyways, few weeks later I develop the MRSA infection, back into the hospital, shortly afterward the 'swelling' begins. I complain about the 'swelling' to my surgeon on no less than two occasions. The swelling and the sounds of gurgling fluid and the little lumps that I can see moving around under the skin.

You know, cause things like that kinda fucking BOTHER ME.

Well my surgeon, who was just showing up for his last few weeks at the hospital before he moved on to North Carolina told me it was nothing (on both occasions) maybe some fluid. Call them back if it didn't go away after a couple months.

It didn't go away, I started calling, nobody answered my calls.

After a MONTH of calling (during the regular business hours they themselves quoted in the recorded message) someone answered the goddamn phone.

I told her what the problem was, told her who my now-absent surgeon had been and that he'd said one of his staff members would see me when he was gone. She said she'd call back when she knew who I was supposed to see.

She didn't.

After a few more weeks I get someone on the phone again. I explain things AGAIN. She (maybe not the same she as last time) told me that they'd lost a lot of surgeons and advised me to get a CAT scan here in Parkersburg and send it up and someone would look at it and call me.

I get the goddamn CAT scan.

The goddamn hospital sends the goddamn CAT scan to Morgantown.

I don't hear a goddamn word.

I call a few more times and eventually get someone to answer again and I explain that They were supposed to get my results and have someone look at them. She seemed confused. Like I'd just asked something completely absurd.

Receptionist: “What surgeon were they sent to sir?”

Me: “I don't know.”

Receptionist: “How can you not know? Who did you see when you were here last?”

Me: “Dr. *******.”

Receptionist: “Dr. ******* no longer has an office here.”

Me: “Yes, I know.”

Receptionist: “Then what do you want?”

Me: “My CAT scan was sent up there for SOMEONE to look at and tell me what's going on.”

Receptionist: “I'll have to have someone call you.”

So after that bullshit the hospital down here tells me that everything fixed in the last surgery has come open again in one giant clusterfuck-catastrophe.

But how can that be? Things haven't changed that much since the last TWO times I saw my surgeon and he said I was fine.

A few more calls and I have an appointment in Morgantown.

That was March 15th.

Two months ago.

The appointment was May 15th.


I know because I WROTE IT DOWN. I didn't just write it down, but I called my Mom and told her and arranged for a ride (because, sadly enough, her 99 Mercury Mountaineer SUV gets better gas millage than my precious automobile) and got tings rolling as soon as I could.

I go to Morgantown, two hours away, with gas at $3.99 a fucking gallon. Got there early, noonish, because I couldn't remember if my appointment was at 1 PM or 3 PM.

I ask the woman behind the counter when my appointment is.

She says July 11th.

I'd always heard the expression 'blood boiling', but I was suddenly seconds away from scalding people to death as flaming plasma shot out of my ears.

“No, (I said, maintaining my composure) my appointment is TODAY.”

And I got in. That is, of course, after they asked me my entire medical history again and who I was there to see and again through the story about how I didn't know who I was supposed to see.

And I remarked to myself, not for the first time, that it was almost like they didn't want to see me.

So I wait for three hours (which did WONDERS for my mood) and finally get to the back where all the previous conversations throughout the day had to be gone through AGAIN.

I've often wondered, maybe one of you readers can tell me, I see them writing shit down every time I have to go through this bullshit about my medical history and unless they're just doing fucking Mad Libs to pass the time you'd think one of these written accounts of my bloody saga would save me the breath of explaining all this shit more than once per fucking VISIT. It's not like it goddamn changes from telling to telling.

But we get through all that shit and I get to ask the nurse who looked at my CAT scan (the one sent two months earlier) and what they thought of it.

She explained that they didn't have it, so nobody had seen it.

I think at that point I DID feel a tiny trickle of blood run down from my left ear.

Must have evaporated into steam.

Fortunately, I had the presence of mind to go to the hospital and get copies of my CAT scan data myself the day before and bring it with me (after first making a copy for my personal records) to the goddamn appointment that apparently never goddamn existed.

But I am looking at the fucking note right now...

So I give her the disc, she takes it to the doctor, she looks at it, comes in and explains to me that everything fixed in the last surgery has come open again in one giant clusterfuck-catastrophe.

But how could this be? Since all the symptoms I described were present at my last two visits and I was told I was fine and sent away?

Something I've noticed about doctors, they're damn good at avoiding questions when they want to.

They avoided the living shit out of that one.

And I did ask more than once.

They WERE nice enough to explain that once I lost a little more weight they would be happy to try again. Then they set up a return appointment for July, probably the same day as the other one I supposedly had, and sent me on my way with two new hernia binders.

So at least I got SOMETHING out of the trip

Now at this point I need to ask everyone their opinion. Is it just me, or does it seem that they knew something they didn't want to share with me? Something that might have been A LITTLE FUCKING BIT IMPORTANT?

I think tomorrow I'm going to sleep half the fucking day, then get fucking drunk off my fucking ass and call a fucking lawyer.

What do you think?

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