I have always had a great respect for doctors.
Growing up I spent (more than) my fair share of time in hospitals, as well as an adult (for various reasons and relations). I do not have a fear of doctors or hospitals. If anything I feel quite at home among the chaos, quiet, and antiseptic smells mixing with life, death and uncertainty.
So, with my comfort in and respect for the medical profession, I find it interesting that after all of these years I’m still not so sure how the professionals feel about me.
While it seems that doctors (mostly….well, ‘almostly’) tolerate an inquisitive patient, someone who is actually participating in their own health care by asking questions, challenging their doctor to explore options for treatment, etc, it’s different when you are the caregiver for the patient.
Doctors’ reaction to and engagement with me since I started taking care of Miss Cathy have run the gamut from A to Rx.
My routine has been that when I accompany her to see one of her doctors I always take her meds and my composition book to take notes. I sit in the room with her and try not to interrupt or interject unless I’m asked a question directly or need to clarify something that’s she’s said in error.
Lately, l’ve started taping her meetings with my iPhone a) to refresh my memory and 2) to have proof of what went down during the appointment if/when I’m challenged on something that was or wasn’t said while with a doctor.
In the last ten days Miss Cathy and I have been to see her ophthalmologist and her neurologist. She’s had an MRI, MRA and is scheduled for a Diabetic Retinopathy to help explain her recent loss of vision and (ongoing) confusion.
So far there seems to be more questions than answers…but not to worry, I’m taking notes.