I consider myself a patient person. And I am really patient. Unless I’m provoked. Then, not so much. Of course, the definition of patience probably includes “even when provoked.” I like to forget about that part.
As a writer, I’m even more convinced that I’m a patient person—after all, writers can submit something and wait six months or more for a response. You see, I am patient.
But then the provocations happened. My computer is dying, so last week I ordered a new one (Costco had an amazing sale). And I didn’t find out until after I ordered it that it would take 10 to 15 days until arrival. But since my old computer is still working, most of the time, I tried to be grateful and tracked my computer via FedEx across China. (Which means, it was probably made by oppressed people in unsafe working conditions. Gulp.) Yesterday my computer made it to Alaska—now it’s on the same continent as I am!
So I felt like I was doing pretty well in the patience department. Until yesterday evening.
Multiple times before and right after my surgery, my doctor told me that I’d have all the biopsy reports on Tuesday. Great. I marveled at how quick it would be—surgery late Friday afternoon, results on Tuesday. I even Googled response times for this type of biopsy and discovered that a week was quick. I wasn’t going to have to wait a week. Yay! I could handle a couple of days. So I didn’t worry. I waited. And if I’m honest, I spent most of the time asleep. Who knew you could sleep 12.5 hours out of 16 without the help of medicine?
So Tuesday came. I made sure my cell phone was fully charged and the volume was turned up. I ordered the minions to pick up the home phone if it rang—they like to ignore the phone. (What is it with young people these days—they don’t like to talk on the phone? They only communicate through emails and texting.) Fully armed with all possible communication devices, I waited. All day. At four o’clock, I called the office. I got the answering machine. Apparently, they don’t answer the phone after 4pm. And the recording announced that any messages will wait to the next business day. Oh, and by the way, they don’t work on Wednesdays. You know how they say when someone’s angry they see red? I think I saw pink.
In case, the doctor is confused, here’s some advice. You don’t say, “I’ll get the results to you on Tuesday” and then not call. Especially when post-surgery, the doctor discusses your problem and says to you, the patient, “Wow, I’ve never seen anything like that before.”
You don’t say, “I’ll have someone from the office call and schedule your post-op visit for next week so you can be cleared for regular activities,” and then not have anyone call.
In all fairness, they probably didn’t call because the results weren’t back. I know when I worked as a cytogenetic tech while I was in college, anything that came in Friday afternoon waited until Monday. Not necessarily because we were lazy or were eating cake (though someone always brought cake, cookies, etc., on Fridays), but mostly because we were trying to get all the stuff that was already late finished before the weekend.
So I’m waiting. I no longer see pink. I’m having fun watching my computer travel from Anchorage to Memphis. And I’ve got my doctor’s office phone number ready and waiting. Because Thursday at 9:00am when the office is opened, I’m going to be their first phone call.