Wellness Check

Mom’s loves her doctor.  And why shouldn’t she.  When we go for her bi-annual check-ups, the doctor fawns over her.  She doesn’t poke and prod and perform any silly examinations – she chats.  She doesn’t schedule any tests for her to take, like a mammogram, a colonoscopy, a cholesterol or bone-density test – she just sits and gabs.  She takes Mom’s blood pressure, listens to her heart and asks her questions like, “How are you?”  “Are you getting out much?”  “Have you fallen down lately?”  “How’s your memory doing?”

Mom usually answers “I’m fine.”  “No, I don’t go anywhere.”  “Yes, last week.  Want to see the bruise?”  “What was the question?”

To these responses, her doctor smiles, nods, and then jots down meaningless doodles in Mom chart.  If I interject anything resembling valid, medical information, the doctor either ignores me, changes the subject or sides with Mom.  For example, we went for Mom’s mid-year check-up last week and had the following discussion.

Doctor: “So, have you been feeling dizzy lately?”

Mom: “No, I’ve been fine.”

Me: “No, she’s dizzy pretty often.  She fell last week.”

Doctor: “Oh, ouch.  Did you hurt yourself?”

Mom: “No, but I got a bruise on my arm and skinned my elbow.  See.”

Doctor: “Hmmm.  So, you’re not falling down too much.  That’s good.  How’s your memory.”

Mom: “It’s terrible.  But then, it always has been.”

Doctor: “Always?”

Mom: “Yes, I’ve always been bad about remembering names.”

Me: “Mom, I think the doctor means are you forgetting things now.”

Mom: “No, I don’t think I am.”

Doctor: “Well, that’s good to hear.”

Me: “Wait, wait!  Yes, you are Mom.”

Mom: “No, I’m not.  Like what?”

Me: “Like you forgot it was the fourth of July and when the fireworks went off at the stadium you thought someone was banging on the house and stealing our air conditioner.”

Mom: “Oh, well, that was different.”

Me: “How is it different?  You just got done watching the Macy’s fireworks special on TV and 15 minutes later you forgot it was Independence Day.”

Mom: “It’s different because it could have been copper thieves.  That’s what I thought it was.”

Doctor: “Well, that does happen you know.  People steal copper all the time.”

Me: “That’s not my point.  My point is her memory is starting to go.”

Doctor: “Do you think your memory’s going?”

Mom: “Maybe a little bit but it’s not too bad for an 85 year old.”

Me: “You’re 86, Mom.”

Mom: “Whatever.”

Doctor: “Close enough.”

Me: “Arghhhh!”



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