Well well (not not)

Here I am again.  Having taken a hiatus to find a real job in a really bad job market, I’m back.  I’m working full time – sometimes a 40 hour week, sometimes less, sometimes more.  My boss is insane (mantra is “she’s only interim….she’s only interim”) and had, within my first 6 months at work told me that I “look sick” and that I was “making myself sick”.  Fantastic.  Some months later, she was diagnosed with uterine cancer.

Before I go on from that, let me just say, this is going to be one of those times.  One of those “oh Dyspatient is really bitter.  How mean!”   I have to preface (further) by saying that I am not proud of this.

When my crazy boss – who has punished me by changing my sign in/sign out procedures because I had the nerve to advocate for restroom and food breaks at work; who told me that the other person who had my job just worked 12 hour days to cover what is an obvious and legal liability risking staffing shortfall; who made those disparaging remarks about me being sick (I didn’t bring it up, I got sick at work  prior to restroom and lunch coverage arrangements being in place and had to go to the ER) – announced to the staff that she had been diagnosed with uterine cancer, I did experience some moments of schadenfreude.

Yes, I’m a horrible person.  Yep.

Let’s see…I tried to catch up all that can be quickly summed up in my “About Me/About This Blog” section.  Some doctor stuff.  I’m living closer to a real city with big research hospitals.  Unfortunately, those hospitals seem to have a paucity of primary cares and my insurance won’t accept “rotating resident” from a clinic as a primary.  I had picked one who was local and fit a few of my preference parameters when I first moved up here – and I mean first, because while cleaning a glass and metal lamp shade in the days of unpacking post-move, I massively cut my finger.  It bled and bled and bled some more….finally after walking around with it wrapped in about a whole role of gauze, I went to change the dressing and it was still very actively bleeding.  So off to the hospital, which was covered by my old insurance with a big fat co-pay.  And then either back to the hospital some days later to have the stitches out (and another $50-otmy) or find a doctor who was in network for my NEW insurance (lucky me, I had insurance overlap!) who would take them out for a mere $15.

So I have this doctor now.  She’s a nice person I think, but not a great doctor.  She might be an ok doctor.  I can’t judge in those areas anymore.  I can judge shitty and great, but the middle ground is a place I just don’t dwell.  I tend to bring out the best or worst in them and I don’t think it’s just my affect.  How a doctor deals with someone with what is, unfortunately, a growing list of symptoms without identifiable causes (at least without primary causes) tends to be either really great or really bad.  And believe me, I’m pretty flexible on “Great”.  I’ll take compassionate, intellectually curious, thorough, advocating, educating, enduring, and with strong follow through even if there is no diagnosis at the end of it. Hear that doctors?  You don’t need to fix me!  I’d love it if you did but honestly, I’ll take helping me just get through the day to day without letting the ego threat of unknown causes and new symptoms turn you mean or dismissive.

Current primary has become dismissive.  She blew in and (tried to blow) out of that room like a whirlwind. I came in with a list of things to talk about – I knew I had this follow up scheduled so things that were problematic but not urgent, I just put on the list but I got to exactly one thing on it before I gave up on calling her back from the door. Truly, it was clear that she didn’t even read her own note for why I was there for the follow up she’d told me to schedule.  I left there feeling terrible.  And feeling very lucky to have gotten into therapy with a good psychologist, because I left with what I call the deep dark despair thoughts (D.D.D.).  So now I’ve got an appointment set up with another doctor.  Internal medicine/Infectious disease certified, good patient reviews, not as close as the one I’m leaving but if he’s good it’s worth it.  We’ll see.

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  1. queenofoptimism

     /  May 20, 2010

    Bitter? Nah. Wonderfully human. There’s no excuse for bad bosses and nasty people who want to blame you (or anyone) for making themselves sick. So glad I am finally getting to know more about you! I have high hopes for the new doc. Let us know how he rates with you!

  2. Thanks Queen. I will. I just had to change my appointment b/c the boss told me the day I’d picked was bad. On the plus side, now the appointment is sooner. I am studying up on Dr. D’s advice on “getting worked up”. That was excellent. I’d link it here but, can you do that in a comment on wordpress?

  3. R. G. Maines

     /  June 5, 2010

    Oh, I lost my job in a professional position, because I asked for ‘reasonable accommodation’ under the law, Americans with Disabilities Act.

    My boss triggered my PTSD so badly, I was to the point of sitting in my office crying, every day. She realized what buttons she could push to shrink me into a puddle and routinely did so. I asked if I could work in another department or have another supervisor (5 other people before me successfully left her dept. because they couldn’t work with her), but when my disability progressed, they terminated me, over the phone, using ‘personality conflict’ as their reason.

    I understand what you’re saying about your doctor too. My primary care physician is a very nice woman. I enjoy talking to her, but as a doctor she is seriously lacking. She recommended treatment that was later proven to have caused more damage to my spine, she’s asked me to tell her what words on the MRI report mean and she forgets what treatments she’s used in the past, as if she’s not looked at the chart in years. She’s always running at least an hour behind schedule and you’re lucky if you get 15 min. with her before she breezes out of the room and you’re sent to the cashier window.

    I don’t have the option of changing doctors because in the area where I live, there are no doctors or clinics that are currently accepting new patients.
    I’m curious to see how your experiences unfold.


    • That’s terrible about the boss thing! My brother’s had some problems with ADA compliance at work too – isn’t it just horrible how casually people seem to violate it? It’s one of my biggest pet peeves. And how terrible about your primary care! My appointment with the new one is coming up this week and whether it’s good or bad, I’ll be blogging about it.

  4. R. G. Maines

     /  June 6, 2010


    The business I worked for that fired me was a disability rights organization!!!!

    It was a Center for Independent Living. I worked as an Independent Living Specialist, an Advocate, a Peer Counselor and a number of other hats we were required to wear. We taught other companies about the ADA.

    The Exec. Dir. was a Pastor (though the organization is NOT a religious one) who had MD. He was of the mind that if you didn’t have wheels under your butt, you were “able-bodied”. He discriminated against anyone who had a mental health diagnosis and since PTSD was a mental health diagnosis (even though I do have a physical disability) he believed it was more a character flaw, a weakness, than a disability, therefore he didn’t have to accommodate me.

    Makes it 100x worse when you know it the disability community that refused to accommodate you. UGH!!!

    • 😮 wtf!? That is some seriously messed up shit. I’m just curious, was this malarky carried out under ADA or ADA-AA?

  5. R. G. Maines

     /  June 6, 2010

    Yes it was seriously messed up shit. This particular agency reeked of corruption. I was told often by management that I was… are you ready?… “too honest”.

    It seemed to me that since the Exec. Dir. was a “Pastor”, he always got a pass. Who is going to accuse a pastor of wrong doings? Who is going to second guess a pastor on issues of law and ethics?

    (One of the many reasons I’m not ‘into’ organized religion)



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