Blog 1437 – 08.27.2019
Listening To The MD In Me (Mega-Daddy)
I watched an old black and white Vincent Price movie yesterday in which he played an arrogant aristocratic New York State “Patroon” back when state law still allowed fiefdoms such as his to exist. Vincent could play the “bad guys” so well. He has this great line when his lovely Connecticut farm girl wife asks, “Do you believe in God?” He said, “I believe in no one but myself nor do I believe that I am bound to follow any other’s rules like reading the instructions on a medicine bottle.” And I know the writer of those lines just wanted to portray what a megalomaniacal sicko the patroon was but I have developed the curious habit of reading people and of listening between the lines and heard some deeper truth in those words. I do not believe that even the villains in our stories are “bad men or women”, mistaken perhaps, misguided maybe “, but then are not we all at times? What was Vincent’s character trying to say? This I think, “I am responsible, answerable, only to the highest, and the best in me. I will not, I dare not, give that power away to anyone else.” And be sure that the egos of others, who have not always our best in mind (neither our own ego to be sure) are always vying for that power over us. From the sales clerk trying to shame us into “rounding up” for a businesses’ particular favorite cause, itself, I think, most often. Check it out, how few cents on a dollar of most charitable donations actually go to the stated charities but are eaten up in “administrative” fees – just another profit stream I am thinking, like insurance plans and warranty plans. “Would you like to super size that and let us keep the change for sick kids in the hospital?” No, thanks, that is part of my cash back program. What a revolutionary idea and no vendors or suppliers gets charged extra for it, nor me.
Our system has taught us not only to be constant insatiable consumers but not to question the rules. Every rule I know but one, The Golden Rule, was written so some person could have some power over another, some advantage. The Golden Rule Of Love makes us all equal, the rules of ego-man make some patrons and keep the rest of us peons. Most, if not all, would agree that it is better to be patted-on than peed-on.
I recently submitted to an annual “well-ness” visit with a Nurse Practitioner in my insurance plan, only because I needed the annual prescriptions of two medications renewed, that I take daily to treat my enlarged prostate. It took five visits to the Emergency Room a year ago and being catheterized each time in order to empty my bladder to convince me that I needed to take these medications. I finally listened to my body and even let the Urologist’s nurse teach me to catheterize myself. I only had to do that the once to prove that I could. Two pills daily and things have been and are still flowing fine.
But (4)ninety day refills was all I could get, which meant, I would have to see a doctor in a year to get them renewed. I travel with my work, so I knew I would need to get a new primary doctor wherever I was to get the prescriptions refilled. I called my health care company and they set me up an appointment with a Nurse Practitioner in the area where I am working. None of the doctors they called were seeing new patients.
She did write me the new year prescriptions but wanted to do blood work first and, after that for me to come back up stairs from the lab, to have my prostate digitally examined. And that means by her finger not electronically. When she got me in a fetal position on the examining room table she did the deed and said and I quote, “You no longer have an enlarged prostate.” It was as if Jesus had pronounced, “You are healed” to my ears. But, I am to continue taking the pills even the little blue one that the Urologist in Bemidji, Minnesota last year said might start shrinking my prostate after I had taken it daily for five months or so. Drugs prescribed by doctors are like those so-called temporary taxes that never go away, that keep someone else’s money coming in and ours and the medical insurance plan’s going out. Is it any wonder medical costs are always skyrocketing in this country. The Nurse Practitioner after washing her hands shook mine and made me an appointment for one year from that date to come back and see her, if I am still here which I hope to be. I refer to my working location not my dead or alive status.
So I went to the pharmacy that evening to get my three month supply of the two pills, the first of four refills. The rub came in a few days later when the Nurse Practitioner’s nurse called me saying a couple of the blood tests were a little high and that the NP wanted more blood work and to see me in three months and to come to the appointment fasting this time for the blood work. She also said the PN said my cholesterol was a little high and that she wanted me to start taking another daily pill for that. The NP would write me a 30 day prescription with two refills. The PN’s nurse also said I needed to start a low-fat/low salt diet and lose some weight. A lot of second hand information on the phone, but, I try to be an agreeable guy most of the time. No good deed goes unpunished. So I picked up the new Rx and started my diet. I have already lost five pounds and plan to lose thirteen more before my next appointment. Two days later I got another call from another nurse saying some of the same stuff but adding that I needed to come in for more blood work right away and schedule an appointment with an outside lab for an abdominal ultra sound, and that the PN needed to exam me right away because some number of something on another blood test (they took five vials so I assume that did five tests) was slightly higher than normal. What is normal anyway? I replied to this nurse, “Hold the phone, tell the PN, I will see her in the 90 days as I agreed. She can do blood work or any examining she needs to do in the office then.”
Oh, I almost forgot the PN during my office visit tried to convince me to have a colonoscopy done. I said, “No, thanks.” So she suggested that she could have a lab send me a stool sample kit that I could return for an evaluation. I said, “Sure, I always wanted to send my poop in the mail.” And I did this morning but had to find A UPS office to return it next day, so I did not get to post it in mail after all. But the poop is really going to fly. I could not resist that one.
Regarding doctors’ orders and the instructions on medicine bottles, I am no megalomaniacal sicko either, Vince, but I do know who is really responsible for my health, wealth, and well-being and it is no doctor, Practical Nurse, nor Pharmacist, but big/little ole me, God/man rolled into one – just like Jesus. And I believe we all are as he was in this world, children and heirs of the most high God though it may sound a bit megalomaniacal to some.
Your friend and fellow traveler,