Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Flomax…Take it to the Maxx!

When I turned 40, I went to the Doctor and basically said, “I’m 40, I’m ready for you to stick your finger up my butt.” She quickly replied, “Nope, that’s when you’re 50, unless there’s a problem. Is there a problem?” This was an easy answer, “NO!!!.”

Either way, I was prepared for the visit: I showered, vigorously scrubbing my anus and the surrounding attractions, and put on underwear, a normality that I usually didn’t partake in. I had been caught at the Doctor without underwear a few times and it was embarrassing. This time would be different. I would be clothed underneath the robe.

6 years later I was at the Doctor again and things had changed. My shoulder hurt, I was paranoid about Diabetes and it felt like I pissed 100 times a day. I finally had issues I needed to talk about.

She entered and asked me how I was doing, looking at my chart and going over my last visit, which was a year ago. Since I turned 40, I get a physical every year.

Delaying the issues, I lied and said I was fine. Instead of inquiring about the causes of Diabetes, I asked, “Do you think those pharmacy salespeople - the ones with the roller bags stuffed full of drugs - get robbed a lot?” Opening with a human interest story or quip about the surroundings usually helps ease into the hard talk. Or, in my case, delays the issue. I like to differentiate myself from the miserable, cranky sick people in the waiting room. My miserable, cranky phrase will come soon enough.

Giving the question some thought, she replied, “I’m not sure. They only carry subscription sizes of innocuous drugs. I don’t think they carry Oxytocin and similar drugs.” Good enough for me.

“What about Flomax,” I continued, “Do you think they carry Flomax? If they do, do they ever give you Flomax t-shirts, pens or any other promotional items?” Odd question, but it made sense to me.

Since entering the frequent urination phase of my life, my ears perk up when I see or read a solution to this heartbreak. Add a catchy name like Flomax and a commercial of three grey haired guys cruising Highway 1 in a convertible without having to stop for a pee break and I’m in, all in.

Ignoring my request for Flomax swag, she jumped Diabetes and the sore shoulder, launching into my frequent urination problems.

“How often do you go a day?” she inquired. “Do you get up to go in the middle of the night?” Instead of telling her that I drink massive amounts of Diet Pepsi, chased by water in the morning and evening, I lied and said a little Pepsi and lots of water. It’s my not so dirty little secret. Something I have to work on.

After a few more questions, she reaches for a glove and asks me to roll over on my side, like Burt Reynolds posing for Playgirl. It was too late to tell her about my Diet Pepsi addiction; too late to divulge that I lied about my liquid intake; too late to say I pee because i drink too much. I accepted my fate.

I apologized: “I’m really sorry about this. Sorry.”

“It’s not a big deal,” she said. “It’s part of my job.”

“Yeah, but it’s the worst part of your job,” I added.

As she approached, glove hand in the hair, I said, “You know, this is going to change our relationship.”

She laughed. She knew I wasn’t being gross.

It’s over in a second.

“See, that wasn’t so bad,” she said, falling back on what you say after getting a shot.

I nodded. I’ve had a few fingers up my butt, just not in this context, so I knew what I was getting into.

Frequent urination stole the thunder. We brushed past Diabetes (paranoid!) and the shoulder injury (deal with it!).

While quickly putting on my pants, she asked if I was OK. I must’ve had a blank look on my face, staring at some inanimate object in the room.

Knocking me out of my trance, I said, “Oh, I’m sorry. I was thinking about when I got tested for Gonorrhea. It’s way worse.”

She chuckled, shook her head and said, “Have a good day, Greg. See ya in a year...I hope.”

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