Why I Am Taking a Break From Medical Professionals
Any medical information included is based on a personal experience. For questions or concerns regarding health, please consult a doctor or medical professional.
After dealing with 20+ years of being in the healthcare system in some form, I decided to take a break from it. A small but much needed one. Rescheduling appointments that took months to be able to get into. Emailing doctors and therapists about these rescheduled appointments and much more.
I started this journey at age 10 for depression and trauma. And for the last 26 years (you can guess my age), it has been in and out of offices with rheumatologists, primary care physicians, orthopedic doctors, physical therapists, dietitians, functional medicine, integrative medicine, etc. The list just goes on and on. I have dealt with physical, mental and chronic pain for a very long time.
There have been some help and answers to some of the conditions I have and more contradictions between medical professionals. You have this. You don’t have that. Or vice versa. Being started on medication, taken off (if it is determined that I don’t have a said condition), being placed back on, adding more medication to the growing list of what I already take. Being poked, prodded and all the while, feeling not like a human being when being seen by most of these professionals. More feeling like a lab rat that is going to be tested yet again or feeling insignificant because “I am not a black and white textbook case.” Being dismissed (literally and figuratively) because of this.
It has taken a toll on me. More so than I realized. Until the other day a friend of mine said, “With what you deal with daily, it is almost like you have a second job.”
She’s right. I do. We all do if we are with a mental health/physical condition that we have to deal with daily. You never get a break. Not fully. From the time you get up, until you go to bed (if you are lucky to get sleep), it is always there. For myself lately, going to appointments has been a dream deferred. Some doctors even becoming upset that I am seeing them again. To which I say in my head, “Isn’t that your job? To help others who are in need?” Besides, it is not like I am thrilled to pay more money out of pocket, take more lab work/tests, or want to see you [said medical professional] again either.”
So for the next few months, I am going to try to be with what is. Practicing self-care, listening to my body more, not to try to over-push on activity. You know? The “spoon theory” everyone talks about. Maybe it can help me be in a better frame of mind than I already am. Be out in nature more, since it is one of the few places I find solace and comfort. Write more. Take more pictures while practicing being present. Appreciate life more than just sitting in another waiting room, waiting to be called to the back.
Maybe doing this is a mistake. Maybe it’s not. I don’t know. I just know there needs to be some small changes for awhile until I get my bearings straight and figure out what to do next.
Getty Image by Sergey_Peterman