Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Second Opinion

Have you ever taken tab-top drapery, rod and all, and stood the whole contraption on its end? The material zips to the floor and it turns into a rod with nothing to hold up.

It was apparent from the beginning of my appointment with Dr. Second Opinion that he wasn’t interested in giving a second opinion at all. He thought I was wasting his time. He fully respected Dr. HC and his ability to diagnose Fibromyalgia. Another patient might second guess him one day.

I was worried when the speech he gave from behind his desk inferred that he held those beliefs, but I had not yet given up hope, because there was still the matter of an exam.

By this time I knew the pressure points off by heart. I was ready to shout out yeses and nos. I wanted to tell him that it hurt everywhere, not just at those points.

And then, as though he had asked Dr HC how to administer the test, he pressed as hard as Dr HC did. In that moment I was devastated. The power left my lungs in one relinquishing exhale, flattening my voice.

There was no reason to tell him anything because he was not listening. So he went about poking me like I was a fucking faulty doorbell and I stayed silent.

My lack of participation in the test didn’t dissuade him from announcing his confirmation of Dr. HC’s diagnosis. Because he blatantly ignored me and automatically took the other specialist’s word as if it were a message from the cosmos itself, Dr. Second Opinion went from pastor to perpetrator in less than twenty minutes.

I took a chance asking for a second opinion and I lost. Now that two specialists had diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia, nobody would dare dispute it. Not even me. In public.

This moment changed me.

The people who could help me could not hear me; and my body was speaking to me in a foreign language, one even more incomprehensible than the words that didn’t make sense anymore.

Under the thumb of Dr. Second Opinion, I became lost.


  1. Can you get another opinion, only not mention the previous two doctors?

    Straight From Hel

  2. Hey Helen, I wish that was an option, but my health records follow me everywhere.

    As a Canadian I have to produce a health card whenever I go to the doctor.

    It's like the Seinfeld episode when Elaine was black-listed by a doctor who noted in her file that she was a difficult patient.

    But the story doesn't end here...