Over the last two weeks, I went to doctor appointments and something strange has happened each time. The first appointment was actually a follow-up appointment for my father after having surgery a month ago. Anyway I tagged along and we were waiting to be called into a room. When the nurse came to bring us back, she noticed me with my wheelchair, and started saying hello to me in a baby voice. I was annoyed but answered with a mature response of, “Hi, how are you?” Then she went on to say, “I bet your parents like to ride on the back of your chair sometimes.” If I had a dime for every time someone has said that, I would be a rich man. But I just gave an awkward laugh and said “Yeah, definitely.” Right when I thought the weirdness was over, she was asking if I had siblings and I mentioned that I had an older sister. Then she returned to the baby voice and said, “I bet you miss your sister, don’t you?!” Then my mom was talking to her about my sister and stated how she was 26 and I was 24. That was a good save and after that the baby voice disappeared but the nurse looked surprised.
Now this woman was really nice but it is annoying how the general population does not know how to speak to the disabled. Not all of us are incapacitated and mentally inefficient. Every time this happens, I have to bite my tongue and just let the weirdness commence. I want to say so much like how old I am and that I graduated college with a good GPA and things like that but I know I cannot say that without sounding rude.
The other appointment was with my new pulmonary doctor and something weird happened there as well. My other doctor recently left and she was great and was very tech savvy which was great because she could check breathing statistics on my bi-pap machine (usually used for sleep apnea). This is very important for me at least because she could tell me how effective the treatment is and especially monitor how many hours I wear it at night. So this new doctor was an older guy and the first thing he says is that he does not know how to read those statistics. That is not good but it is not too much of an issue because my parents can easily check it too.
Then the doctor was speaking with me and my parents for over 15 minutes. He spent a lot of time asking me about what I’m doing these days. I’m sort of sick about talking about my job hunting woes but I mentioned that I’m writing a book and that was the end of that. Then after that I felt like I was being psycho-analyzed and he was asking me about what my biggest fear is and other questions like that. I was really annoyed at these psychological questions and then he was explaining the importance of preparing myself for my future breathing treatments. A few years down the road, I may need a ventilator and a feeding tube. However, this is a long time from now but I understand that I will need to consider those options. This doctor was making it sound like that I was resisting the idea of using these treatments. I am certainly not thrilled about it but like I said I understand its importance. After that we left the room and set up another appointment and we realized the doctor never used his stethoscope on me. That is the most important thing any doctor should do and therefore our confidence in him was very low. We did set the next appointment but we are looking for a new doctor that is especially more in tune to my needs and my disorder.