May 2011. Time for my 2 1/2 year cancer-free check-up. I had my diagnostic mammogram last week and booked an appointment for follow up with my doctor. For the first 24 months, my follow-ups and monitoring were done through the cancer unit, but now I've graduated to having my family doctor follow up.
This is good in the sense that "Yay, God! I have graduated in my survivorship" however my doctor is a f'idiot, and I am not particularly thrilled with more reasons to have to visit. That being said, my apponitment was booked for 9AM. Whatever was I thinking to book for 9AM.
I open eyes and roll over. It's 8:28. Eight twenty eight!! Arrrrgh! I have to be out of the house by 8:50.
There is no way I can go to this appointment without having a shower and shaving my armpits. I don't hate my doctor that much. But I don't have time to do my hair. I throw a towel on my head to keep my hair from getting wet and still in half asleep mode, grab my razor and jump into the shower.
I manage to cut myself and blood is running down my side as I lather and rinse. My hands run down one of my legs and the feel of winter's fur coat still on my calf causes me to think, "It's been about 18 months since my hysterectomy. The doctor is probably going insist I have a PAP done - I'd better shave my legs." I nicked my kneecap and more blood ran.
I can practically hear the clock ticking off the minutes. I hate being late for things.
For my doctor's comfort, I opt not to put deodorant on. I get dressed and throw my unwashed hair in ponytail (yes, it's getting that long!) and race out the door.
It's 9:06 when I reach the receptionist's desk.
"Sorry I'm late. I wanna blame it on the parking..."
"Oh, I know," she replied. "It's terrible out there."
"But the truth is, I simply slept in. Sorry."
She takes me right into the examination room.
The doctor comes in and glances through my file. "Everything looks really good with the mammogram. You should be having a clinical exam every six months, how long has it been since you had one?"
"It'll be a year in July."
"Oh. Well you should be getting one every six months."
"Yes, I know. I thought that's what I was here for today."
"Come back and see me sometime. You should be getting it done every six months," he says as he flips his hand in the air as if to wave it off and heads towards the door.
And that was my two-and-a-half-year cancer check. Exactly 45 seconds.
By this point I am so irritated with him, I do not insist he do an exam, because about the only physical contact I am willing to have with him, is to perhaps knee him in the groin.
Silly me - shaving my arm pits and my legs, thinking my doctor was there for my health or something.
And so, I assume, without much doctor confirmation, that I remain cancer-free. Yay me!
My real doctor retired two years ago and this guy, fresh off the boat, took over the office. Because of the shortage of doctors in this area, if you currently have a family doctor you will not even be considered by another doctor. I'm considering finding a naturopath to be my primary caregiver and would welcome any input.