Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A sure sign of the times

I went to the Dr. for a checkup, a year late, last week.
I like the practice I use, partly because i don't use them often and partly because they offer an environment that is un-clinical. They are located a mile from the nearest medical facility meaning they are far from the aeromatic germ free-ness that floats in the corridors of hospitals.
I like that in a practice.

They have doctors and physician's assistants on staff. I like that, too. I used midwifes during all four of my children's births, and I hold PA's second on that high list of preferred providers.

There are plants in the waiting room, that are alive, too. That says a lot about a place.

Beaded doorways create a calming clicking when you are moving from one area to another.

They feel "today". and I like that, too. I have an intense fear of "yesterday" types of medical facilities, but that's just me.

So, I was pretty calm when I went in, dragging a trusted friend with me. Because it had been so long since my last visit, I had to fill out the "form" again. The question form. The 347 questions form.

So I did.

The questions covered just about everything from age to health history, to sexuality.

Being divorced for 5 years now, and still struggling greatly with the aftermath of that, i have no interest in dating of any sort, so when the question asked if you are sexually active, I answered,
Not any more
and when the next question asked when i had last been active, i answered, before time began
and then came the question that really slapped the reality of how things have changed in the -Dr's office question form -world.

Please specify- sexually active with: ___men ___women___both.

Both? " are you kidding me? Both?" I looked at my friend and showed her the question.
"Oh my gosh, I can't believe this. Both?" I realized that the shock I felt was in having such questions asked of ME. any of them. I felt a little bit privacy lean. My feelings of how other people answer are carefree.

A lady sitting across from me shifted in her seat. " I heard that. " she said.

I didn't really know what that meant. Had I shuddered or gasped and missed it?
Had I offended her because she might have checked all three? or added an additional choice, perhaps?

I glanced over at her. "I'm here in my pajamas." she said. She wore a robe, bedhead, and zoo animals flannel. This told me more than i really wanted to know, so I just nodded and scooted closer to my friend.

Later, a nurse skated through the form with me. I was waiting for her to come to that "both"question. She made note of my cobwebbed answer to recent sexual activity and yet, proceeded to ask me if I used contraception. I hesitated. I mean, really? REALLY? Despite my answers, and my age of nearly 54, she still wondered?

Then, I decided that her intentions were only good, and so I answered accordingly. "Yes. Abstinance".
She looked at me a little cock-eyed, head tilted.

" Okay, that's great, then!" and we continued on with our Q&A.

She walked me into the exam room and told me the PA would be in shortly. The rest of the check up was as expected.

I left that day feeling like I had just stepped out of an altered universe. I wonder what new questions will be added the next time I go?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting! I have never found such questions but somehow I am not very surprised! Loonygin