Until this month, I had maintained my manhood and avoided any doctor. I would just pop some pain pills and try to power through it, but I was missing so many days of work, I was beginning to worry if I could realistically even keep my job. One day, while accompanying my wife to an appointment because I wanted to hear what her doctor said about a test result that had us a little concerned, he talked me into coming to see him the following week. So much for being a man.
At that appointment I told him about my concerns and he ordered a bunch of blood work and wanted me to keep a food diary until I returned to see him two weeks later.
When I returned for that appointment, he walked into the room looking at my food diary and asked, "Is this real?"Doctor-requested food diaries suck. Do you know how long it takes to eat a Family Size bag of M&M's when you have to weigh each one?— Minor Character (@brettminor) May 14, 2016
I replied, "Well, yeah. I tried to be completely honest and not deviate just because I was recording everything for you."
He shook his head and said, "You eat like a homeless teenager digging leftovers out of White Castle and Applebee's dumpsters. I don't know how your body is functioning. I mean, according to this, for six days in a row your breakfast was Mt Dew!"
"Yeah. It takes too long to make coffee."
With raised eyebrows, he said, "Two days ago for supper you had a rack of ribs on bread"
"I took the bones out."
He pointed at the paper, "There are no vegetables on here. For two whole weeks! Not a single vegetable"
I retorted, "Not true. I had vegetables last night. Spinach, sweet potatoes and tomatoes."
I got excited, "I know this one. Macaroni and cheese!"
He looked at my wife and pleaded, "Can you make sure there's fruits and vegetables in the house and that he eats them?" She agreed.
He said, "Good. Let's move on to your test results."
For the next half hour we went over what was found in my x-rays and my blood work and there was plenty found, but the best part had to do with the results of a particular test. When he pulled this up on his computer, his eyes got wide and he said to his assistant, "Have you ever seen that number that high?" His assistant, whose eyes were even wider just shook his head.
|I pretty sure >300 is more than 3|
You only need to score over a three to test positive for rheumatoid arthritis and I scored over three hundred. In fact, we don't even know what my actual score is because the charts only go to three hundred. I can actually say that my numbers were literally 'off the charts'.
After taking a few minutes to look at the results of several other tests, which all confirmed the same thing, he turned to me and gently said, "I hate to tell you this, but you have rheumatoid arthritis."
I smiled and said, "Okay."
He seemed a little taken back that I was taking it so well, but I pretty much already knew this. It had never been confirmed by a doctor before that day, but I knew. So, his grave declaration didn't get the response he was expecting.
Because my numbers were so high and he was able to locate several nodules in my hands and did see some degenerative damage in the X-rays of my feet, he put me on some pretty powerful drugs immediately to try to get it under control before we start the actual treatment. I don't know what that treatment will be yet, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it. If it works, I won't have to cross it in a wheelchair.
I have another appointment in two weeks. For that one, we will go over my food diary again to see if I took his advice and I will be asking what the implications are of having that incredibly high number that seemed to startle him so much. Cross your fingers. I would do it myself, but they just don't move that way any more.
My test results came back and, as I suspected, I have arthritis. If it gets too bad, I'll just start tweeting with my nose.— Minor Character (@brettminor) May 6, 2016