Thursday, February 5, 2015

Joy, Joy

The holiday season is often one that folks look forward to with unbounded glee. A time of merriment, of peace, of relaxation. At the least an opportunity to get a couple of days off from work and spend the daylight hours doing things that please you. Some folks like to sleep later, some like to catch up on chores at home, some like to go visit friends and family. For me, this past holiday season, I took quite an opposite approach. I decided to spend my time getting to know various doctors and nurses in my hometown.

On Dec. 23 I had surgery at my local hospital to rid myself of unwanted body weight. I am not quite sure of the full medical-ease terminology. It's not liposuction, it's ... oh yeah, tumor removal. Anyway, the surgery really was not so bad. I was actually doing fine planning for my 11:00 a.m. surgery. I went to work and kept myself busy and my mind occupied doing my thing when the hospital called and asked if I could come on in for surgery at 10:00 a.m. because some other person came to their senses and decided to go to Aruba instead. I have had my share of surgeries in the past two decades, but one thing that I have found to be consistently true is that hospital surgery center nurses are very loving, tender, and caring folks. My opinion did not change on this day. After a bit of chit-chat with the doctor, he carved into me. I actually only had a local anethesia, so I could hear their operating room banter and interact with them as they poked about within the pith of my marrow.

On Dec. 30 I went in to see my dentist about pain in my teeth. This pain, that I would describe as an intense tickling, could not be localized to a single location. It covered about a full half of my upper teeth. The dentist proceed to poke at me with an impressive variety of ever menacing-looking instruments. I think that he felt that he had to do something, so he stuck me with several dull and rust-encrusted needles and proceeded to remove a filling in one of my teeth and then to replace it. He told me that he needed to fill his vacation fund and doing pointless work was a great way toward that end.

On Jan. 2 I was back at my dentist's office because I was feeling especially generous with my money and wanted to give more of it away. This man clearly had my sympathy and I really wanted him to be able to afford the deluxe tour. After I told him that I did not feel sufficiently humbled by my previous visit, he began to laugh maniacally and brought out medieval torture instruments powered by diesel engines and malice. He then proceeded to perform a double root canal. He told me he was curious about how loudly I would yell when subjected to his ministrations. Ultimately he found out. He also learned how strong the scent of urine is when a grown man pees himself.

On Jan. 5 I met my oncologist for an in-office visit. I figured that I would be safe from his poking and remarks like "you might feel a slight bit of pressure" or "this probably won't hurt too badly". Anyway, after he humiliated me in front of his nursing staff, I somehow felt compelled to shake his hand and thank him. This might have been because my biopsy showed the tumor should not spawn a sequel.

Anyway, that is my story of adventure and living life on the edge (or living on the edge of life). Hope you had as much fun as I did. I share my tale of woe now (instead of saving it for my memoirs) because several have been asking.