Monday, September 22, 2014

The Gauntlet

It seems to happen every so often.  No matter what the spacing of my appointments I come up on a time of year where everything happens at once.  Appointment after appointment after appointment.  I usually try to schedule my doctor appointments on early mornings of days that I work a late shift (usually Tuesdays) so I don't have to pay for an extra day of daycare for a 20 minute appointment.  And every time I think about about having to get up early enough to fight traffic and get to said appointment 8 o'clock I kick myself for it.  Nevertheless I have come upon that time once again.  What was originally scheduled as 3 appointments over a three week period (something I already wasn't thrilled about) has now turned into 4 appointments over a 2 week period.  I think it's safe to say that after Wednesday I will have had my share of poking and prodding.  Last Tuesday I had a follow up appointment with my arthritis doctor, which has been about every 3 months for the past year or so.  Things are looking good on that front, the swelling has gone done in my knuckles and there it is pretty certain at this point what was originally thought to be rheumatoid arthritis a year or so ago is not.  I still don't really have any solutions for the knee pain that has begun to plague me more frequently, other than don't bend it or kneel on it too much.  And then there was the chastising for popping my knuckles that when something like this:

Doctor: "Do you do that often?"
Me: "Do what?  (looking around with a bewildered look)"
Doctor: :That. With your hands."
Me:  "Fiddle with them?  Yeah.  It's a nervous habit."
Doctor: "No.  Crack the knuckles."
Me: "Umm.  Did I?  I guess so.  I don't really notice it I guess."
Doctor; "You might want to not.  It can increase the inflammation in your joints."

OK.  Taken note of.  But how do you stop doing something that you don't realize you're doing?
My adventure this week will consist of my first ever endo appointment tomorrow followed by a dentist appointment made in a hurry last week after I broke a front tooth.  I now look like a hockey player on the losing end of a fight.  Follow that up with a visit to a new therapist on Wednesday and I will have completed the gauntlet.  I thought I had spaced things out and could have easily handled the 3 appointments stretched out over a 3 week span, but alas, the stars did not align for me.  After breaking my tooth on Wednesday I scrambled to make an appointment as soon as possible to get it fixed, settling with the following Wednesday.  Then the next day the therapists office called to move up my appointment a week.  I agreed because I am eager to get in and hopefully get some of my stuff under control.  I tried to move the dentist appointment up further but was only able to go to Tuesday.  So I was left with deciding if I want to get my pancreas poked and prodded followed by my mouth a few hours later and then off to work, or get my brain poked and prodded followed by my mouth and then have the day off.  I opted for the latter.  Because 1) I want to get my mouth back to a presentable fashion as soon as possible (I work face to face with the public most of the day) and 2) I have a feeling my therapy appointment is going to be exhausting and the last thing I want to do I is go have my mouth spread open for an hour or more afterwards.  So I'll suffer through and live on to the next one.  I'm mostly just glad to have access to good care that I can get in to in a reasonable time.  Do you prefer to get all your appointments done in one quick swoop or spread them out over time?

Update: I got a voicemail while in the dentists chair asking if I could change my Wednesday appointment to a Tuesday appointment at the psychologist.  So much for spreading it out.  In reality I was glad to do it.  One less trip since I was close by and my day off on Wednesday is actually going to be a day off 

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