Mrs. Smith?


Mom:  The neurologist called and said he wants to see me.

Me:  Reeeeally?... I’ve never heard of a doctor sitting around thinking, “Hmmm... I wonder what Ms. Smith is up to today?”... They just called you out of the blue? ...Out of their hundreds of patients, they decided it was time for you to come in?  I don’t think so Mom ... we were just there.

Mom:  (glaring at me) No. I haven’t been to the neurologist in over a year.

Me:  I’m pretty sure you have Mom. It’s the office just behind the hospital....The one where we park over to the right...The one where they grossly overbook appointments and keep the patients waiting foreeeeever....

Mom:  No. You’re thinking of the pulmonologist’s office...

Me:   No. I’m sure it was the neurologist... I remember thinking that he was patronizing... Asking you to draw the face of a clock and put the hands at 2:00.... Asking who the president is and what month we’re in....He treated you like a child....He didn’t even touch you or test your reflexes... He just wants your Medex Gold insurance money....

Mom:  (her turn to speak... but she doesn’t....)

Me:  Okay, okay......I’ll call the neurologist and schedule the appointment.

Mom:  Thank you. I’m sorry to be a bother....

Me: It’s no “bother” Mom...I just don’t want to create doctor appointments where they aren’t actually needed. (Arghh...  semi-smile...)


(Ring... Ring...)

Me: I’d like to schedule an appointment for my mother, Mrs. Smith?

Office Person:  Ohhhhh, Hiii!  We called your Mom yesterday to get her in for her annual neurology exam... We haven’t seen her for a while!


Crap!! ...I am the clear loser of this round... a wound-licking daughter with an to eke out an apology, but self-inflicting a mental beating for my callous and uncaring commentary. Ahhh... but – redemption is right around the corner, because I KNOW we have many more doctor appointments in our future, and the next time I am called upon to schedule one, I will just smile, and say “Sure Mom. What day is good for you?”

Emily GaffneyComment