“Just put this on and the doctor will be in soon.” The nurse said as she grabbed my chart and walked briskly out of the room, her clogs whisper soft on the dove grey tile floor.
Sighing I put the ridiculous paper gown on and sat gingerly on the crinkly paper covering the table, opting for that vs. the black plastic chair with no cover. I shifted myself back slowly, wincing as the paper crinkled underneath me making noises that I knew were loud enough for everyone in the entire building to hear.
There was a small window with blinds looking out onto the blacktop parking lot where the medical professionals parked their cars. I sat forward so as not to crinkle anymore and looked out between the blinds wishing I were anywhere but here.
The office was a bit warm but I was grateful given my current state of undress. The heat of the room, the sun reflecting off of the cars, the freshly oiled blacktop and the quiet droning of doctors, nurses and patients made me drowsy. Leaning back against the raised back of the table I allowed myself to relax and close my eyes. I must have dozed briefly because the next moment I was awakened by the doctor’s sharp two knocks before she invaded my quiet time.
She asked me why I was there and, even though she was holding my chart in her hands, I repeated the same thing I had told her nurse just moments prior.
She looked at my temperature and blood pressure on the chart, felt my neck on each side to see if my lymph nodes were enlarged, looked into my nose, ears and throat and then pronounced in a cheery tone “Well it looks like a virus” as she pulled off her gloves preparing to leave. “Get some rest, drink plenty of fluids and if you’re still not feeling better in a week come back and see us” she said as she prepared to breeze out of the room.
By the time I found my voice to ask her a question she was gone.
Why did I have to wear this ridiculous baby blue paper gown for this? Why did I have to hoist myself up onto this butcher block covered in brown vinyl and tissue paper so she could spend eighty three seconds with me only to tell me that there is nothing she can do? An hour and a half of my time and twenty dollars later I was back in my car feeling exactly the same as when I had walked in.
Wow, it’s a good thing I went to the doctor.