Adulting: Empowerment at the Doctor's Office

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Yesterday, I walked out of the doctor's office and I felt fricken amazing.

You could say that's a first. 

Now, I've always been very fortunate as to never have had any issues or illnesses that would really leave me emotionally scarred from the doctor's, but like many others I had one of those irrational fears of the doctor's. Growing up, you go to the doctor's to get your annual check-ups, and as a growing child annual check-ups meant a variety of shots given randomly against your will. I don't like shots. Therefore, in my prepubescent mind, the doctors = needles = scary = no thanks. Similar were experiences with other health related locations such as the dentist's or the orthodontists', both of which I made semi-regular visits to. Each visit, usually painless for the majority, always iced the visit cake with a pinch, jab, or aching feeling. 

Of course, I knew this was always for the greater good (except for that time I got the flu shot that was later said to be ineffective...) and there are many others out there who simply don't have the luxury of accessible healthcare. But, not going too much into that, what I'm talking about today is putting on your big girl pants and walking yourself into that doctor's office alone. 

If you haven't already tried it, I highly suggest giving it a whirl. Now that I am, by legal standards, "an adult" it's a little more expected that I can take care of myself when it comes to answering basic health questions and undergoing an annual health evaluation, which I totally can! Once I accepted that idea, I was much more relaxed with the whole processes.

This time around I was thankful that I had a really cool nurse for my visit, which can sometimes be a game of chance. And my doctor, whom I had more control over, was wonderful as well. Also for whatever reason, I didn't have to do the whole stand out in the hallway with a giant spoon over my eye looking like an idiot who damn well knows they can or cannot see the chart. I went in, did my check-up, laughed a few times, and got jabbed a couple times. Story over. 

I'm sure that doesn't sound like a huge deal, but it definitely is an event worthy of being noted in my Big Ass Book of Adulting (BABoA?...maybe not) Now, onto the whole big feeling of empowerment (imagine that last phrase with a booming godly voice, possibly Morgan Freeman.) As the doctor went through all the basic questions such as am I eating healthy? Drinking enough water? Have any problems with? etc; I realized how well I've been treating myself lately. For the first time, I could confidently say that I was definitely drinking enough water, and definitely getting enough sleep; things you usually lack during the school year as a college student. It reminded me that I can, and am taking care of myself. Lately, I also have made it a priority to really focus on what goes into my body and how that makes me feel, which is another topic for another post for another day, but it made me feel all fuzzy inside knowing that "I done good." But, that was just the easy part.

On to the dreaded segment of inevitable blood work...and shots. This is the part where either you come out alive, or end up sprawled out on the floor having passed out from the idea of a needle. Luckily, I can say I left the room in a vertical position with a couple band-aids and a big ass smile on my face. Yeah needles suck, and yeah, my arm occasionally feels like it's just gonna pop off any second, but it was what? A minute of my life? Plus, a little pain is SO worth it considering it can prevent an even stronger pain in the long run. And honestly, it really didn't hurt that much. 

The whole experience tapped me on the shoulder and gave me a metaphorical high-five. 

I think we need more of those in our lives. Little metaphorical high-fives; those sound nice. So go out there, and get yourself one of those wonderful high-fives. Take on an experience you don't necessarily like and attack it with as much courage and positive thinking as you can. In return, you may end up feeling a little more empowered.

 - ML

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" I appreciate effort. No matter how small, silly, or irrelevant, I appreciate effort." - Billy Chapata

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