My mom was a dialysis patient. When she was on dialysis we didn’t have a kidney doctor or dialysis center in Hutchinson. She had to go to Wichita 3 times a week for her dialysis. She rode over with a couple from here because she didn’t drive anymore and I worked full time.
Disability paid her doctor monthly to take care of her. His office was in the clinic next door to the dialysis unit. He wanted to see her in his office every 6 weeks but they never would see her the day of dialysis.
He didn’t come in and visit with the patients during dialysis unless there was a problem that arose during the process. He monitored her chart but he didn’t talk to her every month. We had to go to Wichita every 6 weeks for an appointment with him, which made 4 trips for her that week.
When I took her for an appointment with the doctor she didn’t want me to go back to the room with her. It was a parent thing I guess, so I always took a book and waited in the waiting room for her to come out.
She never said much after the appointment other than he said she was doing well and that everything looked fine and he would see her in 6 weeks. He may have spent 5 minutes in the room with her.
One day she came out and was madder than a little wet hen because she’d had questions she wanted answered and he didn’t stay in the room long enough for her to ask them. I offered to go back right then and ask him, but she didn’t want me to do that.
I told her to write down her questions and we would get them answered the next time. She didn’t realize that I was planning to go into the room with her and had started to form a plan to get him to stay in the room and answer her questions.
Six weeks later we were back for her appointment. When they called her back I jumped up and went with her. She was not happy with that but she didn’t send me back to the waiting room. I guess she wanted the questions answered more than it bothered her that I went back with her like a parent.
While we were waiting in the room she showed me the list of questions so I would know if he answered all of them. After I read them I handed them back to her. We were ready for the doctor and my plan was in place to get him to stay and answer her questions.
When he came in he walked right by me over to mom and spoke to her. I was sitting in the corner and he couldn’t see me when the door was standing open. While he was talking to her I shoved the door shut.
He jumped when the door slammed shut. He turned around just in time to see me plunk myself onto the chair that was now sitting in front of the door. He had a trapped look on his face when it registered that he couldn’t run out like he always did. Then he looked over at mom and she slid the list of questions across the desk toward him.
He looked back at me again and I said, “She has had questions for several months and you wouldn’t stay long enough to answer them or ask if she had questions. You are going to answer them today! Then I will move and let you out of this door.”
He could tell by the set of my jaw that I was serious and he finally sat down on the little roll around stool and picked up the list of questions and answered all of them for her. Once he finished the list I moved the chair and thanked him for answering her questions.
That was not the only time he encountered me in the room when he came in to see mom. There were three or four other times that she had questions and I would go back with her. He was always a little shocked to find me there but he knew what he had to do to get out of the room.
The second time I went back with her was several months later and she had more questions she wanted answered. She had written them down and when we went into the room she laid the paper on the edge of the desk and then sat down in the chair beside the desk.
I sat down in the chair in the corner again, and we waited for him to arrive. When he walked into the room he saw the paper on the desk and immediately looked behind the door and discovered me sitting there.
He shut the door and walked over to mom and said: “I see we have some questions today.” She nodded and pointed to the piece of paper. He gave me another quick look, probably checking to see if I was still sitting in the corner or was in front of the door.
He pulled the roll around stool out and sat down in front of mom and they went through her chart, something he had never done before, and then he answered the questions on the list. Several times while he was in the room he glanced over to see where I was.
I never moved from the corner that day. Every time he checked to see if I was still there I had to chuckle to myself. It was funny that a doctor who was 8 inches taller and outweighed me by 125 pounds would be nervous when I was sitting in the room.
When he finished answering her questions that day he turned to me and wanted to know if I had any thing I wanted to ask him. I told him no and thanked him for answering mom’s questions.
She never got used to me going back to the room with her and neither did her doctor. But he always answered mom’s questions when I was there. When I was taking mom to the doctor, the highlight of my day was seeing the doctor’s reaction when he found me sitting in the corner of the exam room. To contact Sandy: [email protected]