Sunday, March 25, 2012

Oiy... the week I've had

So, I’m so sorry I haven’t been keeping up with my blogging. I know you all must miss me terribly, but thankfully Princess WeeWee has been picking up a lot of the slack.

Here’s the deal, my useless assistant, Ms. G, was out for Spring Break all week. Funny, I don’t remember being able to take off for a week to Cancun with the girls when I was in grad school. No, as I remember it I was rewriting my thesis for the 600th time while weeping quietly into my chardonnay. Perhaps that’s just me, though.

Regardless, she was out of the office for the whole week. Now, I realize many of you are left thinking – if she’s as useless as you say, then how is her absence causing so much added work? Because, dear readers, she is not simply incompetent, that I could deal with, no, she’s stupidly diabolical. I assume it’s stupidity anyway, because I have no faith this girl whom I affectionately call waddle-butt-no-brain (not to her face, of course, the university would have a field day) has ever thought anything through. No she is not bright, and yet she somehow managed to take 5 years off my life this week.

Day one. I had 12 patients scheduled for Monday. 12. For those of you who don’t have a great grasp on time, that’s a full half a day without breaks or lunch if my appointments were only an hour long each. They are an hour and a half. I scrambled to keep my waiting room in order and reschedule overlapping clients, but you try telling a 40-year-old crier with fear of abandonment issues that you can’t see him. Oiy.

So, I did manage to bump seven of them, but lost hours in the process consoling confused patients and trying to make sense of my upcoming week’s schedule, which was written in some sort of chicken scratch hieroglyphics on Ms. G’s calendar.

Day two. Tuesday I was still overloaded with patients, as I had had to reschedule so many Monday patients into the rest of the week, but it was a manageable load. However, Ms. G inexplicably scheduled Mrs. R, a woman afflicted with Ablutophobia (a fear of bathing), at the same time as Mr. J, a man suffering from Osmophobia (fear of smells), and allowed cross over times in the waiting room between a patient afflicted with Apotemnophobia (fear of amputees) and a one of my regulars, who unfortunately lost an arm in a boating accident years ago. It was chaos.

Day three. By Wednesday, after two days of the phone constantly ringing and an out-of-control waiting room, I called a temp agency to send me a receptionist. Around 10am, the peppiest little cheerleader of a woman showed up at my office. She brought beanie babies for the receptionist desk. As I was exhausted and way behind on all my non-patient related work, I just pointed to the desk and told her to take messages rather than interrupt me and keep peace in the waiting room. Ideally, we never overlap patients, I told her, but this week was hardly ideal. Here’s my calendar, I told her, reschedule as needed. Seriously? How hard does that sound?

By 3pm she had interrupted me six times with things like, “We’ll he’s from the phone company and he says he can get you a really good deal. I know you said not to interrupt, but I just couldn’t stand if you lost out on a great deal because I didn’t come get you.” My patient calendar made less sense than it did when I handed it over, and somehow I had an appointment with a patient who clearly meant to see a chiropractor, not a psychiatrist. I told Suzie-cheerleader to go home and called another temp agency.

Day 4: As Thursday rolled around, I stopped being able to function as a human being anymore. I forgot to bring pants with me to the gym, so after my shower I had to put back on my dirty yoga pants, which matched my silk blouse beautifully. I got lost driving to work and didn’t realize I was drinking decaf coffee until my fourth cup and a nearly fatal narcolepsy moment in the ladies room. The receptionist sent over by the temp agency was an aspiring actress who spent most of the day reciting lines or randomly breaking into song.  I generally don’t see patients on Thursday and had a lecture series I was looking forward to going to that day, but stayed in the office to finish up on piles of paperwork. My husband tells me he stopped by with lunch, but honestly, I can’t remember. My brain gave out completely and at some point I fell asleep in my chair. I awoke to darkness outside and the sound of the janitor. As he reached around me to empty the garbage can he let out a horrifying, hacking cough right in my face. I still shudder when I think of the spray. I slunk home to a sleeping house and fell asleep still wearing my dirty yoga pants.

Day 5: I’m assuming there was a Friday. It comes pretty much every week, right? I spent the day unsuccessfully fighting the germs the janitor so thoughtfully spit into my mouth. I really only remember bits of the day. There were tissues, night quil, homemade soup from my hubby and I think Maury outed a few guys who were, in fact, the fathers. I hate to think of my patients showing up to the dark, empty office with no one there to explain what happened, but there was nothing I could do.

Day 6: More bed rest.

Day 7: I feel like I’ve regained the strength to tackle another week, but dare I say it… It’ll be nice to have Ms. G back in the office. Even if she is a waddle-butt-no-brain. Don’t tell her I said so though.

Dr. Em 


  1. You need a brake! How about a partner? Maybe Ms. G has a sister or a friend she could train for the times she's out of the office. I'd give you more advice but I'm exhausted thinking about your horrible week. I need a brake.

  2. Ah, mom! Thank you for the kind words, but i have to say I would not trust a relative or friend of Ms. G anymore than I'd trust a muppet to run my office... actually a muppet would probably be an improvement. Regardless, I hate to do this to you because you're being so kind, but you know me better than anyone... I can't help myself. It's a curse. A brake is something you press down on in order to slow or stop your car. A break is what you and I both need. :) Love you Ma! You always taught me to be right... or maybe it was "do what's right..." I'm gonna stick with "be right" though :)

    Dr. Em

  3. Would there by a problem sitting an arachnophobic next to someone who thought they were spiderman?

    1. Interesting. I like your thinking Bob the Water Cat. I could fill a waiting room with guys who have fears of spiders, bats, water, etc. and guys dressed as Spiderman, Batman and Aquaman. We'll call it research. Don't worry, I'll cite you on the study... or police report, depending on how it plays out.

      Dr. Em

    2. Cool.

      I would love to assist. I already have all of those costumes plus one with is just a XXXL stocking that fits over my entire body with two holes cut out for the eyes. I call him 'Hose Man'

  4. That would be funny, Bob The Water Cat, if if wouldn't cause Dr. Em to throw herself out the window. I have lots more advice I'm not using Dr. Em, but I don't know which bits would help. I misspelled break, but it could have been a Freudian slip.