Tuesday I was supposed to have a full battery of screening tests: 1) to evaluate my stroke risk carotid artery plaque build up, 2) get a peripheral arterial disease profile, 3) an osteoporosis risk profile---already know this one but the bundle of tests is cheaper when you don’t pick and choose---4) an abdominal aortic abdominal aortic aneurysm screening and 5) an atrial fibrillation screening. They're not covered by insurance and you don’t need a doctor to order them through Life-Line Screening but for $150 it gives you piece of mind. It didn’t matter because Monday night I got a call wanting me to reschedule the tests to late September---the week before I move---because they were going to be understaffed. I got a little---read that a lot---upset. They threw me this curve ball a half hour before my realtor was due to present the offers I wrote about in my last post so my nerves were already flying higher than a kite in a thunderstorm. I apologized to the poor woman for reacting to her request like a whiny child but I didn't reschedule.
Five years ago when I got those same tests done I, of course, showed the results to my primary care doctor and I asked if they were a waste of money. He side-stepped the question by saying if we had any reason to suspect anything was wrong we could order these tests and insurance would cover them. But my husband had a football sized abdominal aortic aneurysm that was ready to burst any minute that they found while looking at his kidneys for something unrelated. They had him in an emergency, 10-11 hour surgery that same afternoon. People pay more than $150 for something they’ll wear less than dozen times before sending it off to Goodwill, so I reserve the right to get judgy with anyone who judges me for wanting to spend $150 this way when I really, REALLY need a new pair of shoes.
Wednesday I walked out of the Infusion Center after getting my IV bag full of Reclast for my brittle bones and I felt like a puddle of pudding. I sat in my car trying to get warm because they keep that place as cold as a meat locker and even though they give you a heated blanket to snuggle under its never enough to warm me up. Puddles of pudding are not safe to drive so I waited behind the steering wheel of my Trax, the summer sun beating down thru the windshield until I no longer felt like an elder in a tribe that sends their grandmothers off on icebergs to die. It was 11:00 when I left the parking lot and suddenly I was starving. An Atkins shake I had earlier was supposed to keep hunger away for four hours but it failed to live up to its promise. Had I not been driving I might have written the company a stern letter of complaint using lots of explanation points.
On the road my car knew that in my condition it needed to take me to the Guy Land Cafeteria which---surprise, surprised---was filled with old men hence my nickname for the place I will miss after I move. Some of those guys were racks of bones and looked like they should have been at the Infusion Center with me. Others looked like they were hiding bowling balls under their shirts. I ordered the super breakfast because it came with hash browns. Then I wondered if I might be pregnant because I haven’t wanted or ordered hash browns since the ‘70s.
I love people watching but frankly the old men at Guy Land that day were too bland looking with their ash white, paper thin skin and gray hair that matched their muted plaid shirts. (Or was my cataracts telling me that?) Either way, maybe I read too many romance books while my house was being shown because I tried to imagine what some of these old guys looked like in their primes. I got nothing.
When three guys at the next table started talking about passing kidney stones through their penises I left before I was tempted to over share the woes of having urinary track infections. I’d much rather get my penis talk in fictional conversations in romance books, thank you very much. Although that word rarely comes up in contemporary "hot" romance books---no pun intended---and the euphemisms used in the last century when I started reading the genre are few and far between. Nope, now they go straight for the ‘C’ word and aren’t you glad you came by today to learn that bit of genre reading trivia. ©