I had an appointment with a new rheumatologist last week which went badly, meaning on my scale that not only did I receive no help, but I also got verbally abused.
In the hour-long initial appointment this woman mocked my degree, insinuated that my problems were primarily mental, insinuated that I wasn't as sick as I claimed, intimated that my diagnosis was wrong and that I just needed to accept this and get a job. I refuted this onslaught as politely as I could, being far more polite than I would have liked to be.
Fear was swirling in my belly during my appointment, but I didn't allow it to show. Fear of incapacity, fear of pain, fear of sickness. As opposed to the fear of two years ago...fear of getting a bad grade. Or maybe fear of Starbucks being out of melon syrup.
Fear is an emotion that I feel but almost never acknowledge, covering it up with anger, sarcasm or put-on self-assuredness. My current ordeal ties into that feeling of being a child all over again, and discovering that you can feel real, pure, unalloyed fear at 29 years old.
I had encountered few challenges in life that didn't yield to a combination of will and intelligence. But I now have to rely on other people to live any sort of life. Not only friends and family, but strangers.
And these strangers, my doctors, will not have me.