I felt an inward flinch as I approached what looked like a set of mahogany doors.
I’d been both looking forward to this visit, and dreading it. Something was wrong with me, but I had no idea what it was. All I knew was that a Google of my symptoms all concluded with the ominous warning “get thee to a doctor – pronto!” And so I had. First to my family doc, who then set up a referral to a bum doctor. Okay, a proctologist.
Feeling squirmy yet?
You can imagine how I felt. I only had to wait a month – which, believe me, was just fine as far as I was concerned. I didn’t want unwelcome news coming my way. And the potential varieties of prognosis was just too awful to think about: it could be cancer, it could be something to do with my prostate.
And then there were the cures to consider: from chemo to radiation to removal of parts. My imagination – with the kind help of WebMD – had no limits. So I waited out the month and tried not to think about it.
Which brought me to today, and those dark, dark doors. I walked in to a reception area which was similarly dark. One might say “rich” in tone. Dark wood reception desk, muted lighting, and classical music playing on the P.A.
I kind of expected a maître d’ to come out and look me up and down with disapproval. “No, no, no. This won’t do”
And then he’d hand me a smoking jacket. “Would you like to try one of our cigars? And please, have a brandy while you’re at it.”
The frowning receptionist thrust a questionnaire at me and intoned “fill this out. Front and back. Sign it and return it to me.”
I sat down. Looked around. The guy closest to me was slim, and probably my age. He wore a denim jacket and jeans, and was watching his iPhone with rapt concentration. The lady sitting across from me looked like a frightened bird. Her carefully coiffured head turned this way and that. Looking, I think, for a way out. She knew she was trapped. Maybe I was projecting my state of mind.
I completed the form and handed it back. “Have a seat. Someone will be with your shortly.”
Eventually I was ushered into the doctor’s sanctum sanctorum. I sat on a little black stool.
Presently he entered. A more genial and welcoming doctor you couldn’t imagine. This small smiling thin guy looked like he was in his 80’s. I felt my stress evaporate almost immediately. Still, I kept glancing around, looking around for cattle prods and other instruments of torture. I wasn’t born yesterday. I know what goes on in these offices.
My stupid ADD brain of course kept a running commentary of smart remarks, all of which I kept to myself. I mean, that doctor asked me a lot of questions. So when he asked “are you gay or straight?” and I answered “straight”, my brain added “yup. It’s a steel trap back there doc, so you’re gonna have your work cut out for you trying to invade it.”
I smirked, and hoped he didn’t notice.
After ten minutes of discussion about my medical history, my eating habits, my family history and the current Maple Leaf standings in the NHL, he was able to give me even more relief by saying “I’m pretty sure your problem is one that involves your diet. Put simply, the food you’re eating is all wrong, and it’s irritating you down there.”
“So…” my brain added “not cancer then?”
“But I’ll need to examine you to see what exactly is going on.”
Oh. I had hoped that just our discussion would be enough. Guess not. I swallowed. It was time for the Big Reveal.
In front of us was an examination table. I looked but couldn’t find the stirrups. Maybe he was going to have me lie on my side, like my regular doc has me do when I’m getting my annual physical. No such luck.
“I want you to kneel there, and then pull your pants and underwear down.”
“Shit” said my brain. “Okay” I said aloud.
I kneeled on the kneeler (which I hadn’t noticed until he pointed it out) that was attached to the table. The table was for me to lay face down on. Perfect praying position.
After pulling everything down, a female nurse (or someone, I have no idea what her role was) sauntered into the room, nonchalant and uncaring. My brain said “HEY! DID YOU GET A GOOD LOOK, BITCH??” She wandered over to the sink and got busy….doing dishes I guess. Seemed this was going to be a community event.
The doctor said “okay you’re going to feel some pressure” I laid there on the table, ass in full flower display, just waiting for the moment.
Then I heard a buzzing sound. Brain: “WTF???”
He was raising the table up. It was on hydraulics. I nodded to myself. Made sense. He’d have had to kneel himself otherwise, if he wanted to get a good look. The buzzing stopped. Another buzzing sound began. The table was rotating slightly, so that my ass could be fully pointed in his direction. Lovely.
Finally it stopped. And the prodding began.
I could feel something slimy going on back there and realized I was being medically violated. “Okay” said the doc. “I want you to squeeze my finger”
“Fine” said my brain. “Just give me your hand and—-oh. I see what you mean.” I squeezed. My brain confessed “I know it’s not much, but frankly you can’t blame me – I’ve been slacking on my kegels lately.”
He removed his finger and inserted the scope. I felt that. I really really felt that.
“You’re going to feel even more pressure, because I have to get some air in there so I can see better.” I heard him squeezing a bladder as my insides pushed sideways.
“You can pull your pants up now”. Oh good, it was done. And the nurse was still over there, washing her dishes.
He took about fifteen minutes to educate me on what I should and shouldn’t eat. Additionally he wants me to come in for three treatments to correct a few things that are wrong up there. Nothing major, and the end result *cough* will be very positive.
I walked out of that office with a smile on my face and a relieved spring in my step. I even thought about whistling. A glance at the frowning receptionist made me reconsider.