The E.N.T. Doctor And What To Never Say To A Patient

I don’t enjoy going to the doctor. I think most people share that feeling with me. It’s just all the waiting around, you’re a doctor not a musician we are hoping will come out for an encore.

Get over yourself.

Actually I should apologize. My doctor spends a lot of time with his patients and is actually the best doctor I have ever visited, but more often than not it’s not worth waiting. Waiting rooms freak me out a little bit. People are sick and for some reason when they are at a doctor’s office they assume everyone else has the same exact symptoms as them so etiquette gets thrown to the wind.

Savages.

I try to limit the amount of visits I make to doctors throughout the year, but sometimes it’s just necessary to go, like the time I woke up spitting up blood!

That’s a fun experience. It’s more the rush of blood to your face as you start to panic that makes it fun over the actual fact that you’re spitting up blood like your favorite actor in any movie where anyone gets punched in the face.

I walked into my bedroom and told my wife, “hey so, uh, I just spit up blood. I think I’ll be calling out of work today.”

That was really it. I got over the fact that blood was exiting my body when we were built to keep it inside at all times. My wife, however, kept herself composed when she said, “don’t you think that’s a bigger deal than just staying home from work?”

“No.”

“I think you should see a doctor on account that this isn’t normal.”

“Meh. I’ll go tomorrow if it persists.”

I love staying home from work. The warm hug of the blankets as you lay in bed feeling perfectly normal but having a grave enough excuse that no-one will question whether or not you are lying about blood pouring out of your mouth like an open fire hydrant on a hot summer day in the city.

Staying home from work is also the only time anyone ever watches The Price Is Right. Like, seriously, how is that show still on the air? Are there 3 million people per day calling out sick in order to maintain it’s ratings? And before you get all judgmental by saying, “old people watch constantly, haven’t you seen the repetitive life insurance ads that all somehow star Alex Trebek?” Please know that I work in media and know that those advertisers aren’t paying that much to reach that very old demographic that won’t stick along long enough to be considered a repeat customer, if you know what I mean. If you don’t, it means they are going to die soon.

I sat home that day enjoying the fact that I could be sitting at home and secretly hoping two things:

1. It was an extremely busy day at work so people would be like, “woah without Robert F. Peterson here we are really in the weeds! Let’s not fire him like we thought we should’ve done 3 years ago!”

2. I’ll be productive and look up people I should contact so I can get a manager, get my scripts sold, and be world FAMOUS!

Neither came to fruition but I was told there wasn’t enough of a case to fire me legally.

WIN!

I woke up the next day and was completely fine. My body decided to not reject my own blood and allow me to hold onto it, I appreciated that. Since it’s an uncommon occurrence my wife told me I should absolutely see a doctor about it and I eventually gave in.

I scheduled an appointment with an E.N.T. doctor and found it kind of concerning that in a non-emergency I was able to get a time with no problem. The only doctor I knew of that had patients that never returned was Dr. Kevorkian, but I do have to say if I ever needed an assisted suicide I would’ve used him as his patients always leave satisfied.

I arrived to the doctor’s office and my concern was only heightened as I walked into a waiting room that apparently has been untouched since 1984 – complete with wood paneling and original dust. A receptionist greeted me behind a scratched up, dirty, Plexiglas window that had one of those metal pieces that functions as a speaking hole. Her charisma and charm matched the window perfectly.

As I sat in the same chair that Lincoln may have been executed in I wondered what kind of lie I could tell my wife so she would believe that I actually saw the doctor and his, probably, disgustingly dirty medical equipment.

Does WebMD have a section for husbands who are too afraid to tell their wives that they ran out of a doctor’s waiting room because there may or may not have been a spider on the wall opposite them?

Eventually my name was called by a sketchy nurse who clearly didn’t want to be there or maybe she had something against the name Robert Peterson, or maybe she had something against a person named Robert who took her on a date and excused himself while they got milkshakes from their local burger joint and never returned.

I don’t know…but she didn’t have to take it out on me.

Now I’m in the examination room and I have to say it’s more sterile than I expected. No dust on my fingers when I ran them across those metal trays they have set up with equipment that makes you feel like they are going to pull your brain out through your nose. The nurse told me to sit down, still angry from that date long ago, and left the door open a crack when she shuffled off probably to cry in the break room.

Since I can’t read minds I’m not sure how many of you watch Seinfeld, but if you have then you will find this next part particularly funny – I hope.

If you’ve seen the episode where Kramer is wearing incredibly tight jeans and is asked to babysit his neighbor’s kid who is sleeping only to wake up and see Kramer walking like Frankenstein then I implore you to get that image in your head right now. As I’m sitting in the examination chair I saw a doctor walk by with an exaggerated limp and all I could think about was that moment in the show and how I hoped that wouldn’t be my doctor. I know it’s terrible to think that and to judge someone’s abilities based on a physical ailment is horrible, but I couldn’t help it. I judged and I judged harshly, swiftly, and better than Ito ever did.

So obviously this guy was my doctor and he actually was a really nice guy. Clearly the euphemism “don’t judge a book by it’s cover” applies here but I judge books by their cover because I like to be surprised when that book is actually nice and takes care of me. Despite his great bed side manner and relaxing demeanor he had to poke, prod, and plunge things into my face to see what the source of the bleeding was. It turns out it was just a dry nose so I was completely overreacting or TECHNICALLY – and because she doesn’t read this – my WIFE overreacted.

Even though I went through a bunch of uncomfortable moments during my examination where things were being forced into my face – that sounds porn like – nothing was as uncomfortable as when the doctor said to me, “GIMMIE that face.”

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