Wednesday, July 21, 2010

This is what panic is:

I had a doctor appointment today.  I've been sick, as I noted, since about Friday.  I wasn't going to go to the dr., but the husband rightly noted that we spend a big bag of cash for health insurance, so I should get our money's worth.

So I called for an appointment, but my regular dr. isn't in this week.  I ended up making an appointment with another dr. I've seen before and one who I like, but...  BUT.

But the last time I saw this other dr., I had an ear infection and he had me come back to get it drained [gross, I know], which turned into me having a nice bout of vertigo in his office, where I lay on the exam table for 45 minutes trying not to vomit and pray that I can see straight at some point.

So already, I'm a little nervous, since my last experience with this guy wasn't the greatest.  I mean, he was kind, and he even came out of the building to wait with me while I waited for my sister to come pick me up and take me home.  Really nice guy.

But still, a little nervous.

I get checked out, and mention that my ear hurts and that's why I'm there.  Oh, and I've developed a burning cough in the past couple of days.

Well, the nurse checks my oxygen level, and at that point things kind of fall of the rails.  It turns out that not only do I have an ear infection [YES! I CAN self-diagnose!] but I also have bronchitis and I'm not getting enough oxygen.  Not like I'm going to pass out and die, but it's at that level where steps need to be taken to rectify matters.

The dr. tells me I need to do a breathing treatment in the office and that he'll give me a bunch of meds to take to help me breath and actually get some oxygen.

I am, at that point, ready to walk out of the door and take my chances.  But . . .

But I am a grown ass person, and I know that if I do, I'm not going to amazingly get better.  I need to do this.

But I really, really, REALLY don't want to do this.  I mean, I honest to god was doing a cost benefit analysis of skipping out on a treatment to help me breathe and get enough oxygen into my system.

I wasn't dying, but I would definitely feel like I was dying once I agreed to this treatment and I hate that feeling.
Having to explain to the dr. and the staff that I was afraid of this treatment.
Having to explain to the dr. and the staff that I have crippling anxiety.
Feeling like a moron.
Actually taking the treatment.
Worrying about side effects.

Continuing to obtain that delicious oxygen.

So I explained to the dr. my fears and he offered to sit with me while I did the treatment. Which I did.  And I didn't die.  And I managed to not have a horrible panic attack, although I did cry the whole time. 

So that was panic.  But also progress.


  1. I have to admit, I share your fear of Doctors. One bad experience and you never want to go back. But I'm glad you did, because, you know, now you can actually *breathe*.

    Mmmm, oxygeny...

  2. YAY! I'm so glad - I was worried from the tweets. And I know what you mean about insurance, sometimes I'm tempted to just go to the doctor and be like, wanna just check me over? to get my money's worth.

  3. Jo - it always surprises me the number of people who are also nervous about medical things. I feel like I'm the only crazy person. And the oxygen has been DELICIOUS.

    Megan - thanks so much! You are so sweet. I swear, I was losing my shit all day yesterday. Better today, though. Thankfully. I'm glad you also share the Get My Money's Worth feeling. I'll go back when I'm healthy. Less risk of getting meds.

  4. Glad you're feeling better. You are right to worry about dr.s - they mean well but medical shit is scary!
    I had pneumonia once and had to go to ER where they hooked me up to oxygen while I shook with panic then (cuz they were so busy) they put a psych patient next to me. He proceeded to tell me how hears his dead sister's voice telling him to kill himself so I started crying so much I couldn't get anymore oxygen and they had to come over and tisk tisk me. I'm still not sure if I was crying from panic or from sympathy for the poor guy.
    From now on, may I suggest the vet. My cat seems to like them.
    You are a BRAVE woman! Hope you keep feeling better!!

  5. Tonya,
    Thanks so much for the vet recommendation. YOU ARE FANTASTIC.

    Ugh, I'm sorry you had to deal with that poor guy in your condition. How awful.

  6. oh, I so know how that feels. every time I conquer a feel so amazing. Good for you!

    (this is writing to you although that is not the name that will show up. Long story

  7. Bernthis - it's always wonderful to find other people have gone through the same thing. Thanks so much.


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