Thursday, August 14, 2008

Journal of a Living Lady #328

Nancy White Kelly

The blur lasted twenty-four hours. On Tuesday I was visiting a new surgeon to discuss an old problem. The next morning I was on the operating table.

Back in the eighties, I supposedly had a single hernia. Those were the days prior to routine MRI’s and CAT scans. Yet, under the bright lights, the surgeon found three. Those hernias were repaired with a mesh screen similar to the one on our porch door. Through all these years that screen has kept my intestines inside and the flies out. After two weeks in the hospital and a month of recuperation time, that episode of my life saga became a slight blip in my medical records.

However, over the last several months, it became increasingly obvious I was either expecting a baby or had swallowed an ever-expanding soccer ball. My mind searched for reasonable answers. The lost and found section of the paper listed several lost doggies but no errant balls.

My obstetrician wouldn’t even take my call. I couldn’t get through to his answering service either. In his defense, he had a satisfactory alibi. He died twenty years ago.

Obviously, my current oncologist preferred that I choose my surgeon from his affiliated group. I considered it. All my cancer records were in Gainesville. Yet, setting up surgery would require at least one preliminary appointment with an unknown surgeon. Then there would be pre-op trips over the mountain for lab work followed by another journey on the day of surgery. There would be at least one other trip for the post-op follow-up. I am not a mathematician, but even I could figure that the cost of gas was rivaling the cost of the operation. Economics was my incentive to check out other options.

I met Dr. W. Moody once in an informal setting when he was settling his family into the local area. I made a mental note of his politeness and professionalism. Faced with my immediate need of a surgeon, I checked his credentials and spoke with a friend who had been Dr. Moody’s patient a few weeks before. Everything I heard was positive.

My appointment with the Blairsville surgeon went well. What put him at the top of my short list was that he was a humble man of faith. I go the other direction when I meet a physician with a narcissistic “God-complex.” I desire a doctor with excellent skills acquired by hard work. But I also want a doctor who consults with the Great Physician.

Dr. Moody met all my qualifications. He earned an opportunity to either slam dunk that bulging ball or deliver an infamous infant.

Surprise! There was no soccer ball, no baby, nor even three hernias. Instead, Dr. Moody found FIVE hernias. They are now securely contained within a prison made of medical mesh with no hope of a curtain call.

No comments: