“What Now?”

I seem to be one of those patients who doctors give the “What now?” face to a lot. I feel like a burden to their ordered lives, with so many complaints and problems that they take up much more than the few lines given to express the  “reason for coming in”. My prescriptions list flows into the margins.

I have been feeling extra specially awful for nearly a fortnight. I had about 6 of the uber cold shaking episodes, which are incredibly painful and exhausting. Shaking is our bodies natural way of warming ourselves up, and is impossible to fight, just like you can’t hold your breath and suffocate yourself. My Lyme-aware doctor thinks that it could be a reaction from a glucose intolerance, which apparently affects many women with Lyme disease. It is not cool. A few days ago I took a 2 hour glucose test, which involves drinking a deathly sweet drink of 75 grams of glucose (ooh yes. I don’t know if I have ever drunk that much sugar in one day ever). Then, you sit still for 2 hours and don’t eat or drink (minimally…can’t go two hour without a drink…so dehydrated always!) and then they draw another phial of blood. There was a lot of blood drawn that day…3 needles in all. I had to have a blood culture done, which included 4 culture bottles (whoa!) taken from both of my arms. I was not down with the idea at all but it was important. Apparently, I have some kind of gram-negative bacteria in my blood. The walk-in doctor I went to see was of the opinion that that was that, and the reason for my chills and tiredness, and that 2 weeks of double-strength Bactrim would magically cure my symptoms, or at the very least clear up the blood infection. The results were a bit confusing…the lab made a mistake on the preliminary report, but the wording is odd. It sounds as though they are not convinced what is ailing me.

I can’t find a family doctor…none will accept me, or my mother for that matter. It is like stepping into a fantasy land; It’s the McCarthy period and we are blacklisted for suspected Lyme-ist ties; Big Brother is watching out for me though, thank goodness. I don’t know how they can even legally turn me down. But instead, I have to wait over an hour and a half in a walk-in doctors seating area for my 10 minutes with the white coated doctors who wear the stethoscope like a tie. I hope that when I become a doctor that I will start by listening to the patients, I mean really listening, and diagnose the whole problem. Now, if you go to your family doctor, only one issue can be addressed at a time, which is an absurd system, because many disease have multiple, complicated symptoms, and how could a doctor possibly fully comprehend which specialist to send you to if he only discusses one of your complaints, briefly? It is absurd!

It is disgusting how the medical establishment is repeatedly failing me in all areas. How could a previously healthy 15-year-old female slip through the cracks without even a backwards glace from the attending physician? Even when that patient was patiently fighting for her life, I still had to fight for their time and ear. I only wish I could get appointments with all the physicians who tried to pass me off to another useless doctor, and explain to them the truth, to shake them with its devastating power. To kindly describe to them in a condescending tone that I have learned by example so well, that there is an epidemic going on, which for some reason hasn’t passed through their gated walls and foot thick glass of the ivory tower where they reside, somewhere high up in the clouds, where the goings on of a creature as small as a tick are insignificant. And anyways, very few ticks apply for passports, so they can’t be coming into the country!?

To surgically open their eyes seems the next logical step.

4 Comments on “What Now?”

  1. KP
    February 1, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    I feel the same way everyday. When I become a doctor (even though some doctors told me that I would never make it), I will listen, and I will hold people’s hands when they are in pain. I won’t turn a cold shoulder or even a warm one for that matter on anyone.

    Keep fighting.

  2. natalie
    February 10, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. natalie
    February 10, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    Ok- no, I must instead say that you need to be strong and hope for more empathetic responses. You are so lively and vibrant that they will need to see the injustice in your condition. I wish you the best in you sugar tests and get the results you need… wishing you better days and sending hugs your way.

  4. daisysmum
    February 28, 2011 at 7:08 am


    This is ridiculous, absurd, criminal! I want so much to grab everyone by the scruff of their necks, every doctor and every medical-filtering professional and tell them : that you are two of the most reasonable, intelligent, patient, brilliant and practical people I have met – and that by dismissing you they are the opposite of ALL those qualities! Sending love – what can we do? do we need to help you be noisy? Have you considered twittering more? (I can talk to you about that)..although I know it’s been such a long haul you are tired. I can twitter for you – just summarize your posts(less than 148 characters) and link to the corresponding blog once a week? People need to know – there is a new sooke newspaper now – Sooke Voice I think it is, I can talk to them for you?
    love you both xx


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