Friday, June 29, 2012

Juicing {Part 2}

This is Part 2 of my Juicing Post

This weekend my Doc H made us our first juice consisting of beets, kale, carrots, and apples, along with the promise of health and fitness.  It tasted okay as long as you didn't smell it, drank it through a straw in an effort to bypass all your taste buds, and finished with a Godiva chocolate chaser.
Doc H's concoction
In truth, I only gagged once. I would have stopped at first gag, but how could I not participate in Doc H's new quest for healthy living, when he boyishly smiles and pleads with me, "C'mon...I want you to get healthy with meeeeee!" Had it not been for that, the juice would've seen the drain. What can I say? He loves me... he really loves me!
I'm only juicing to get us healthy so we can grown old together.
Source
I drank the darn thing in the name of promised health, fitness, and longevity. Imagine my shock and disbelief when later that evening I re-fractured my foot.

What was I doing you wonder? Hiking? Running? Yoga? Pilates? Gardening? Dog-walking? Sex, maybe? No, as I heard a crack, I felt a searing, sharp, pain radiate through my foot and up my leg as I stood... folding laundry.

What the hay-hay-hay?! I thought juicing would take me to a superhuman place? Instantly, right?? Well, just to drive home that fact that juicing is not a immediate fix to all, the very next day I sprained my lower back.

Source
Don't mind me as I hobble around... drinking my juice and calling my doctor.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Juicing

The first time it came up in conversation, I thought Doc H was referring to steroids. We were in the car and he just blurted out of nowhere, "I think you should start juicing." Huh? I realize it's been a few months since I've been to the gym, but my muscles are just fine, thank you, and I don't particularly find the female body builder's physique sexy.
Source
The expression on my face must have glowed a huge, neon warning sign, because Doc H quickly explained himself.

After watching several food documentaries {Food Inc., Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead}, and studying up on nutrition, Doc H had decided enough was enough. He noted in all his years of medical training, he never had one nutrition class.  He felt it was a disservice to his patients. It was time to get knowledgable and healthy. No, he didn't want his wife to start injected herself with steroids. He wanted to invest in a juicer and start drinking fruits and vegetables he, up to this point, wouldn't even eat unless prepared by a culinary genius.
Source
I'll admit, I thought (and hoped) this desire to juice would pass. However, a month passed and Doc H spent most of his free time either at the computer or on his iPad studying this country's food supply and it's nutritional value. I tell you, it's dismal. Doc H would regurgitate the highlights of his nutritional research of the day to me as we readied for bed. It sent me to bed grasping my pillow desperately in an effort to clear my mind and find some sleep.
Source
As Father's Day approached, I decided the gift of juice would be just what the doctor would order if asked. So, LB and I went on a trek. What a trek it was! Apparently, we are not the only ones who want to juice. Store after store, mall after mall... sold out, sold out, sold out. With the soles of our feet emanating intense heat and pain, we went home exhausted and defeated, settling for online shopping to gift him with a printout of what he would be doing in his near future.
Source
We waited a week for the juicer's arrival. During the week, Doc H began reading up on the different foods and their nutritional values and what ailments each food can aid. Turns out, you need to drink lots of different fruits, veggies, and herbs to keep everything healthy. Now our fridge resembles the organic produce section of Whole Foods.
Source
This weekend my Doc H made us our first juice consisting of beets, kale, carrots, and apples, along with the promise of health and fitness. Sounds exquisitely yummy, doesn't it?  It tasted okay as long as you didn't smell it, drank it through a straw in an effort to bypass all your taste buds, and finished with a Godiva chocolate chaser.
Doc H's concoction






This week I'm again taking part in Yeah Write, a writing competition for bloggers. If you're looking for a wonderfully supportive group of writers and fun forum to share your work, be sure to check out Yeah Write. If you're looking for a place to find some great blogs, Yeah Write is the place to do it. Check it all out! Voting takes place on Thursday. Please vote!



read to be read at yeahwrite.me


I've also linked up at Talk To Us Tuesday; another great place to find some bloggy reads!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Medical Malpractice: Advice to Other Doctor's Spouses

Source - Not an endorsement or referral
I've been wanting to write about this dreaded, dreary topic for ages. However, my fear for jinxing myself and Doc H has served as a buffer between these thoughts and the keyboard. Jinxing your luck is  very real around these parts, especially when it involves the pager and emergencies at the most inopportune time...yes, even during marital relations. What is the dreaded topic you wonder? Medical Malpractice.

I won't bore you by ranting about the crazy threats by emotionally overwrought family members, because that is just what they are, nothing more. No, instead I really want to address the spouses of docs.

DO YOURSELF, YOUR DOC H, YOUR FAMILY A FAVOR: Every time you move, as soon as you unpack, scope out the best medical malpractice defense attorney in the area.

You want the pit bull, the barracuda. Money is no object. This is your husband's (or wife's) reputation. Your livelihood. You'll want and need the best.

We can't saunter through this good life the profession provides us thinking that will never happen to us. I'm not saying all our spouses will end up in the witness chair of a courtroom, but I am willing to put good money on a strongly, worded letter from a barracuda to help calm the squally waters will be needed at some point in one's career.

Surgeons almost certainly will face a malpractice claim sometime during their career.  Neurosurgeons, for instance, have a 19.1% chance of being sued in a given year, while that number is 18.9% for thoracic and cardiovascular surgeons and 15.3% for general surgeons.              ~ kevinmd.com
                               
So, ask around, get names, get numbers and file them away for that rainy day. There's nothing sadder than being asked for medical malpractice defense attorney referrals from a distraught spouse. It's better to get those referrals during good times when you are sailing calm waters.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Overworked

Source
I thought Doc H was overworked, but then I read this...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Play It Again, Sam, Sunday: How My Father Became a Doctor at 65

In honor of Father's Day, I'm re-posting this story highlighting my father.

My father became a doctor after retiring from high tech at the age of 65. Incredible, right? Well, let me tell you how he did it.

As retirement was approaching, my father had to make some decisions with regards to healthcare and insurance. He researched and completed his due diligence in choosing the right Medicare program for himself, but decided it would be wise to have additional medical coverage.

He questioned me about our coverage. Working for a hospital, Doc H has excellent medical benefits. It even covers parents and in-laws. Upon hearing this news, I swear I saw my father float up off the floor and reach a nirvana I had never quite seen in him before.  He signed up for coverage under Doc H's policy faster than you can say "ganglioneuroma".
credit: http://blog.chargesmart.com
 

A few weeks later, he received his insurance card and immediately made an appointment. He was actually giddy to go to Doc H's hospital for his appointments. He  calls me every time he has an appointment to ask if Doc H will be in the OR or clinic. He wants to know if there is any possibility he will bump into him in the hospital corridors. The hospital is a busy place with tons of people walking, running, wheeling around. The likelihood he will ever run into him is slim. I've told my father this time and time again, but he still calls and asks every. single. time.

Now would be a good time to paint a picture in your mind of my father. My father is a kind, family man with an incredibly naive sensibility about him. He (legally) immigrated to this country in the sixties from South America and somehow, despite the foreign land and foreign tongue, together with my mother, managed to raise a family and send us kids to private school. Sometimes, I have to think his naivete worked to his advantage in life. Sometimes it's better not to realize what's going on around you. You know, the "ignorance is bliss" mentality.

Physically, my father is a man of smaller stature. Maybe 5'9" in height and a slim build. He actually looks something like this.... 

He called me after his first appointment.
DAD: Tell Doc Eche to call me when e can, okay? I, uhhh, have some questions dat I nee to as'.
Me: What about?
DAD: Aiyyyyyy.... nat'in really. I jus ave question bout dese papers da doctor gava to me.
Me: Dad, didn't the doctor explain everything to you?
DAD: Aiyyyy...ja, but steel, I wan' to talk to Doc Eche. I come to da house when e is done operatin' with dese papers I ave. I wan show em so e can splain dem to me.

When my father's  insurance card arrived in the mail it looked just like ours. Now, you may think all insurance cards are the same (with the exception of the name and account number, of course). Not true. Our cards are the equivalent of an American Express Centurion (formerly the "Black") Card. When we check in with the receptionists for our appointments, they immediately know we are either a doctor or the family of a doctor. I guess I don't look like a doctor, because every time I show up for an appointment, I am questioned by the receptionist. I politely confirm her (or his) suspicion is true; I'm not the doctor in the family. I'm merely the doctor's wife.

Later that night, Doc H came home to find my father waiting for him at the dining room table, with all the papers his doctor sent him home with. Doc H looked them over and assured him everything looked pretty good and further explained the test results, what they meant, and how his meds have been adjusted based on these new figures.

Doc H is perplexed and somewhat disappointed the doctor didn't take the time to better explain the tests and medication changes to my father.

DocH: Didn't Doc X go over these with you?
DAD: aiyyyyy.....jes, but, well....juo kno, e use all dese big words, dat I don rehconize, jou know?
DocH: (knowing full well my father understands english almost perfectly, he is a little annoyed and in disbelief a colleague would not make sure his test results and instructions were completely understood) Really?
DAD: E uszed lotta worz I donna kno. I nee a medacine di-shon-airy.
Me: (smelling something funny and getting REALLY annoyed) Maybe you need to switch doctors Dad.
DAD: Aiyyyyy....no, no, no, hijita. I jus nea Doc Eche to splain.
Me: Dad, why would the doctor not take the time to explain this all you and make sure you understand?
DAD: (waving me off) No, is ok. Don worry. Is ok.
Me: No Dad, you need a doctor who will explain this to you. It's not really that difficult.
DAD: No, is ok. Is my herror.
Me and Doc H: What? How?
DAD: Wen da nurse call me in, she call for Dr. Sal Sanchez. So, jou kno, I juss go wit her. Aiyeee, but den she tell de utters I'm a doctor! (he slaps his forehead and holds it there as if he has a headache)...Wat can I do?

That's my Dad...."Dr." Sal Sanchez.



Happy Father's Day!







Friday, June 15, 2012

Hospital Politics: A Letter to the Hospital Administrators

I've noticed that several bloggers write Friday Letters. Today I'm jumping on the bandwagon because this is weighing on my bust line and gravity is doing it's job gloriously, there's no help needed.

This, not that.
Source
Dear Hospital Administrators,

Being that you sent my Doc H home to me in a foul mood last night, I feel entitled to share my thoughts with you.

WTF. Really? Blatant, obvious internal politics is grotesque and does not endear you to anyone. Last time I checked, there is a pecking order within the hospital and laying down an "executive" decision to rearrange that order is demeaning.


Here is a guideline for expected behavior. I think you need one.

  • Never lie or go back on your word.
  • Lay the expectations down in the beginning, this will eliminate any misunderstandings in the future.
  • Don't call a meeting to "discuss" a topic, then begin said meeting with "a final decision has been made".
  • What happened to working together towards better patient care? Pitting departments against each other is not a foundation which will foster such philosophy.
Didn't anyone ever tell you? While it may be in differing degrees, doctors have egos. Their reputation is directly linked to their ego. {Unless, we're talking documented and proven medical malpractice}Don't mess with either. It is the ego which feeds the confidence. This confidence enables these men and woman to stretch beyond their comfort zone to save a life. While it may not mean much to you, I assure you it means the world to that patient laying on the table and his or her family.

Remember this: ultimately, your hospital is only as good as the physicians and surgeons you have employed. How will this decision be helpful in recruiting future physicians? Not well. I am willing to bet this type of admin behavior will be the talk of med town, not only at the hospital, but at every hospital & medical conference around. I can absolutely guarantee all the doc wives will be gossiping and bitching about this.

Today is a new day. I hope you send home my husband in a better mood by making your wrongs right. {don't worry, I'm not holding my breath}

Disgusted, Disgruntled, and in Disbelief,

Mrs. Doc H

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Sleep Squandered

This was to be my night. My night of uninterrupted sleep. Due to scheduling conflicts, Doc H left for vacation a day ahead of me. I'll admit, I was a little down in the mouth about him heading out before us, but I saw my silver lining. One night of sound sleep. It sounded so heavenly, I was actually looking forward to it!

You see, I have insomnia. But it's not really insomnia. It's just that I cannot go back to sleep after Doc H wakes me up in the middle of the night. If he's not waking me up, it's, you already know, the pager. If it wasn't for him or the ramifications of his profession, I would have no problems sleeping... at all. I promise you, this is 100% true. My sleep issues are all Doc H's fault.

Last night was going to be a magical night. No pagers, no one tossing and turning, no one getting up to use the bathroom, no one snoring, no one accidentally hitting me or kicking me. No one waking me up to pass the phone. No hospital phone calls in the middle of the night. No one getting up in the middle of the night to get a glass of water. No one sprawling out over the majority of the bed. No one hogging the covers. 

I was going to be able to spread beyond my little 18 inch sliver of the bed which is "mine".  I was actually going to be able to sleep with both my legs on the mattress. Like I said, it was to be a magical night.

And it gets even better...Doc H took the dog! Yes, that meant I wouldn't have to get up to move the dog over to stretch my legs, no nighttime barking, no mutt scratching herself or grooming herself at 1am as she lays against me. 

I was sharing the bed with NO ONE or NO ANIMAL! The bed was mine, all mine. Mine! Mine! Mine! Mine! Mine!

I went to bed all smiles, looking forward to waking up with the sun streaming into my bedroom all fresh and energized for my fun day of road tripping with the girls. 

And then I woke up... at 4:30am. 

Now I have to drive a van load of girls on a four-hour, long and windy road trip. All by myself. Through rush hour traffic. 

Source
My eyes are red and watery. They burn. All I can think is I blew my opportunity.... my sleep was squandered. 

I hate when I can't blame things on Doc H.  I'm sure I'll find a way to make my sleep deprived, cranky state his fault by the time we arrive. I have to. 

It couldn't possibly my fault, right?





Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I'm Thinking Doc H Doesn't Read This Blog

Doc H has a snarky sense of humor... which I LOVE!




I'm thinking Doc H doesn't read this blog. 
Or, at the very least, understand the premise of this blog.
What do you think?

... And for the record, he drove. 
And we ended up at the wrong place. 

If you ask him, we were given the wrong address.
If you ask me, the outcome would've been the same,
no matter what address we were given.

Monday, June 4, 2012

The Road to Snobbery

It was hot today. I believe it was the hottest day of the year, at least the hottest day I've experienced here in our hometown. We've been doing a bit of back and forth from here to our retirement vacation home. Plus, we had a heat wave while Doc H and I were in Hawaii in April. Regardless, today was a scortcher.

As I opened my car door this afternoon, heat visibly wafted from the car. In a rush, I plopped myself in the drivers seat, turned the engine on, rolled all the windows down, cranked up the a/c, and touched the little button on my touch screen to turn on the driver's seat a/c.

Source
Yes, my nifty car blows the coldest, crispest, a/c air right up my ass and I like it. As the air cooled my peaches all I could think was, "Thank God!" as I comfortably sunk in my seat and drove on to the grocery store to buy our organics.

Suddenly, my spine stiffened. The hair on the back of my neck stood at attention. I thought to myself, "Wholly crap. What was that? Thanking God for coochie air conditioning? Really? Who am I? Oh, my...I  sound. Snobby."

I decided right there and then I wouldn't tell a soul.

But, let me tell you, it doesn't take long for people to become accustomed to such absurdities. I'm not the only one.

Here, let me throw Doc H under the bus, too.

Let me remind you, Doc H was on a diet of powdered Hostess donuts, Yoplait yogurt, and frozen TV dinners when we met. He was a culinary misfit and deviant. His scientific mind believed in "calories in, calories out". Nutrition meant nothing to the Doc. Insane, I know.

When we met, we would happily frequent eateries such as Boston Market and Chili's. Then our finances began to stabilize and we began dining at more upscale restaurants to mark special occassions. We liked it. The food was yummy, fresh, and organic. Our finances continued to improve. If we weren't eating at home, we would eat out. We began scouring our area for fantastic restaurants. Our palates were shifting towards refined. We became "foodies".

We shifted from our diet coke and iced tea to glasses of house wine. That grew into glasses of specific bottles of wine. Then came bottles of wine by winery, type, and year. Yes, we're far down that road.

But here's when I knew Doc H was well down the road to snobbery:

We found ourselves at the local Applebee's with all the kids. All six of us were seated reviewing our menus. Doc H and I were seated directly across from one another. While the four kids were chatting and/or bickering away, Doc H quietly called to me from over our brightly illustrated, laminated, and easy-to-wipe-clean menus:

Doc H: Honey?
Me: (still reviewing the menu and not looking up) Um-hmmm?
Doc H: You know... I really don't want to eat at restaurants with pictures on the menu anymore.

So we don't, or at least, I try not to when we are out with Doc H.

It's a slippery road. One I'm not particularly proud of...



read to be read at yeahwrite.me


Sunday, June 3, 2012

Play It Again Sam, Sundays: Co-Pays, Complaints, and Class


On more than one occasion, Doc H has come home sporting a 'tude (our teens' vernacular for "attitude").  More so than often, he comes home too tired to sport the 'tude, but every now and then it's there. For the most part, I understand why he comes home in such a funk once he let's me in and I hear about his day.

One particular day he came home overwhelmed with his patients' complaints.  When I heard him begin with, "All day long, patients came into clinic and just complained about..." my mind raced ahead of the discussion and started swimming with all sorts of possible scenarios.

What would patients be complaining to Doc H about?
Exam room waiting time?
Patient access (how long they had to wait for an appointment)?
The MAs?
The PAs?
The NAs?
The RNs?
The NPs?
Were they unhappy with him?
Were they unhappy with one of his colleagues?
Oh, Dear God, please don't use the dreaded and most feared "M" word...I don't want to hear it...
MALPRACTICE?
What could it be?

Co-Pays. Complaints about co-pays.

***************************************

Source
Dear Whinny Patients,

First off, my husband has nothing to do with your co-pay.  You chose your insurance, you chose your insurance plan, you decided on your deductible. Your co-pay is not in any way shape or form decided or dictated by my husband.

Secondly, complaining to him will serve you no better. He will not take it up with the powers that be. He simply does not have the time. He is too busy serving your needs and sixteen other patients he will be seeing in clinic today. If your goal is to ensure better physician care by reminding him how much your your visit to Doc H cost you today (a whopping $20), you're barking up the wrong tree. Everyone receives the same service. Doc H will always do his best for you and every one of his patients.

Lastly, here's something to chew on, whinny patient. While this is not a scientific poll, it is an observation from one doctor's personal experience - those of you who whine are NOT those who pay their co-pay with single dollar bills, or those who charge their co-pay and stand at the receptionists desk nervously as they wait to hear if their charge was authorized or declined. No, Whinny is well dressed, well educated, definitely higher on the class scale than the non-whinnies.

The non-whinnies have a higher co-pay ($45+) due to their inability to pay a higher monthly premiums, yet there is a sense of gratitude. The lower classes seem to have a better appreciation for their medical care. They are grateful for their doctor's time, ability, attention, and care.

You, Whinny, have one of the lowest co-pays available, perhaps even the lowest. You come in late, and proceed to complain about your wait. You are upset you had to pay a total of $60 for an operation to resect your life threatening tumor two years ago. You have a clean bill of health, yet still want to dwell on your co-pay.

What is that? A feeling of entitlement? I would love to understand. Enlighten me.

Sincerely,
Your Doctor's Wife

******************************************

To my readers,

Sorry for the cranky rant today. My furnace is not working. I am very cold. I am waiting for a repairman. Doc H couldn't fix it with surgical tape.

                                                        ~Emma






Saturday, June 2, 2012

Week in Review

This week began with the Memorial Day holiday on Monday.

On Tuesday, I shared a Tween Tale of gangs, their colors and how LB would keep himself safe in a gang riddled neighborhood.

On Wednesday, I began a 3 part series of a Doctor's Retirement Dinner we attended. The night didn't go too smoothly for me.

On Thursday, I continued the story by reminding every one why Social Calendars and Choosing a Dinner Partner should never be left to the man. Again, the night didn't go too smoothly for me.

I wrapped it all up of Friday, sharing my conversation with another surgeons wife who told me we were Single Moms Who Can't Date. Again, the night didn't go too smoothly for me.

Be sure to stop by tomorrow for Play It Again, Sam, Sunday!

Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, June 1, 2012

A Doctor's Wife: A Single Mom Who Can't Date

This is Part 3 of my Doctor's Retirement Dinner Story
To catch up click here to read Part 1 
And here to read Part 2

I was in a room filled with doc wives and we had just met. Just nearly a minute into our conversation, she (a surgeon's wife), very neatly and succinctly, described our lives in less than fifteen seconds...

"People always say, 'Oh, wow! Your husband's a doctor!' and they think we have this glamorous life. But really we live the life of a single mom who can't date. Don't we? Where's the glamour in that?"


The glam life- blogging from a yachtSource
S-O-B.

I felt like she had just slapped me across the face or poured cold water over me to wake me up. 

She was a few years old than I. Her children older than ours. While her youngest just finished his first year of college, our oldest has just done the same. She had had more years to ponder and reflect on what it was like to be a doctor's wife. 

And she was right, because here are the facts about being a doctor's wife:

  • You will find yourself alone. A LOT.
  • You will need to list someone else as your child's ICE contact.
  • You will need to call someone else when your car breaks down.
  • You will take the garbage out.
  • You will have to learn how to fix the toilet from leaking.
  • You will have to learn how to fix the wireless internet/printer connection.
  • You will go to school meetings... alone
  • You will go to your kids' games... alone.
  • You will go to your kids' school functions...alone.
  • You will make a double date with friends and go... alone.
  • You go to bed... alone
  • You wake up... alone


In reality- I'm probably doing thisSource
You get the idea, right? Glam life, for sure.

What could I say to her? She was absolutely right.  My eyes fell to the ground as I internalized and silently wrangled with her personal philosophy of our doc wife lives. And there on the ground, I found the answer to her question. It was the only upbeat answer I could come up with to such a pallid and unsavory reality...









"I think it's in our shoes."
Source


This is the final installment of A Doctor's Retirement Dinner. The rest of the night was rather uneventful and would make for a boring post. I lived it and don't care to revive it through writing about it. Thank you for hanging in there with me!
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