It was a long, apprehensive drive down the interstate to see my new doctor. My former doctor of over ten years had retired and moved back to India to be with her family. I am going to dearly miss her. I had butterflies in my stomach wondering if this new doctor would use me as the medical equivalent of a guinea pig.
Strike one. I sat in the lobby for over forty five minutes to be seen. The new doctor was running late. Dr. Reddi, my old doctor, was as punctual as the finest, most accurate, digital clock. Strike two. When I finally got to see him, I noticed his shirt wasn’t neatly tucked in. Part of it was hanging out of the back of his khaki pants and he looked disheveled. This very fact would have driven my mother crazy and she would have refused to see him. The care and condition of my mental health was in the hands of someone who looked like he stayed up all night drinking at a frat party, threw on some clothes, and stumbled into work. I am glad to report there was no strike three.
“You realize you are on an extremely high dosage of risperdal,” My new doctor said. “Are you aware of tardive dyskenisia?”
“Yes,” I replied. “But this high dosage is the only dosage we have found to work effectively.”
“Hold out your hands flatly and then touch each finger with your thumbs one at a time,” He told me.
I did as he asked.
“Stick out your tongue and hum,” He then told me.
I followed his directions to the letter.
“Well, you don’t have any symptoms of tardive dyskenisia yet, but we need to monitor you closely. Would you like to try and lower your dosage by 3 milligrams?”
“I would rather stay on what is working well at the moment,” I replied. “I am doing better than I have in over a decade.”
“Okay,” He said. “But if you start to have any nervous tics or tremors in your hands, you come see me immediately.”
He wrote me a prescription and kept me on all my current medications which made me feel relieved. I arrived home to many messages on my answering machine. My brother and sister are both physicians of internal medicine and were worried about the outcome. They had called and left messages of support and concern. My father had also called as well. He had tried to get off of work to go with me, but couldn’t get his associate pharmacist to come in. She had some function at her kid’s school to attend to. I called dad as soon as I got home.
“This new doctor is nice,” I told him on his cell phone. “He kept me on my current medications.”
“Thank god,” My father replied relieved. “I was so worried he would try to change things and we would have to start back from step one."
“Don’t tell mom, but he wasn’t a snazzy dresser. His shirt was hanging out of his pants.”
My father laughed.
“That would have just driven your mother crazy,” He said. “She would have gone doctor shopping immediately.”
I finally got off the phone with my father and took a nap exhausted from the day’s exertions. I can’t take a lot of out of the ordinary things added to my daily routines.
Well, Maggie is anxiously awaiting her one scrambled egg and piece of bacon. As usual, I am up well before dawn. I am going to go get some breakfast started and get my day going. I hope you all have a good day and thanks so much for the many comments lately. They make journaling so enjoyable and worthwhile. Good day.