Saturday, May 10, 2008

If it gets up to fifty cents, she may prescribe Levatol...

It's too true what they say about how you spend far less time tending to your own needs once you're a parent. I'm past due for a dentist appointment, am doing well if I get my hair cut every six months, and can look around my living room and spot several piles of hobbies/projects that are just waiting to be started as soon as I can find the time. (Ha!)

One area, though, where I need not harbor unnecessary concern is my health. And that is because I am undergoing a rigid schedule of frequent checkups with my current primary doctor...my preschooler-turned-physician. She calls herself "Doctor Maya", makes convenient house calls (she lives here, and all), and she takes her job very seriously. She also utilizes top-of-the-line equipment, i.e. the Fisher Price Medical Kit, circa 1978. Lest you concern yourself about my current physical state, I will fill you on the report I received at this morning's appointment...

Doctor Maya began her exam, as per usual, with her trusty stethoscope. It's missing the original foam padding, but that makes it all the better for shoving confidently against any spot on the victim *ahem* I mean patient's chest, leaving a perfect red circle on said patient's skin, to the doctor's delight. At this particular check-up, she chose not to listen to my heart at all, actually, after deciding that testing hers would be "a really great idea". Seemed like a rather unusual method, but I guess once you've heard one heartbeat, you've heard them all.

My reflexes were tested next. You'll be glad to know that I showed remarkable response. Granted, it's hard to say how much of that was due to my fabulous reflexes and how much could be attributed to the sight of a three-year-old approaching me wielding a hammer. But regardless, my reaction upon being whacked in each knee proved most satisfactory to the doctor.

My temperature was judged "pretty perfect", when taken in the space between where my forearm rested on my thigh. An unorthodox choice of locations, to be sure, but I was nonetheless happy to hear the good report.

The multipurpose light tool was Dr. M's next selection. You won't even believe this, but she's such an experienced medical professional that she need not even look through the back of the instrument during the exam. In fact, by merely pressing it to the tip of my nose, jamming it forcefully into each ear ("This part tickles", she warned me. "ACK...erm...yes, yes it does", I replied.), and then holding it in frighteningly close proximity to my twitching eyes, she is able to give a diagnosis. "Looks good."

The blood pressure test is arguably Doctor Maya's specialty. She's exacting in her technique. So dedicated is she to getting an accurate reading, that if the Velcro tabs on the cuff don't line up to her specific liking, she thinks nothing of removing and repositioning it as many times as it takes to get it "just right". She's also quite thorough, squeezing the bulb approximately 21,345 times, all the while reminding me to "hold verrrrrry still". But never fear, I came through the check just fine, and she cheerfully gave me a reading of "Twenty-nine Cents". Phew! I don't have to tell you what a relief that was. I was hoping for under a quarter, but what can you do.

The final stage of the check-up, the grand finale, is always the shot. No matter how recently my last check-up happens to have been, I somehow always need an immunization of some sort. Doctor Maya relishes this task. With a sober expression, she loads up the medication, borrows an appropriate quote from the Berenstain Bears ("You won't even have time to say 'Ouch', Mama..."), and then plunges the blunt plastic syringe into my arm, punctuated with the spoken declaration - "Shot!" It's actually a nice touch. If you're going to get the shot anyway, you might as well celebrate it. I might suggest that to the nurse next time I need a tetanus booster.

So all is well, I checked out fine. She did suggest that I go straight to bed, for some reason. After having been up four times last night with her baby brother, I was actually quite excited by those orders. Unfortunately, she recanted them almost immediately when it was time to turn the tables and receive a checkup from Doctor Mama.

Ahhh...nice to know that I'm in such good hands.