I had to return to the scene of the crime last week. Now that my ankle has been tentatively diagnosed (at least as far as my Doctor’s thumb and intense level of pain induced is concerned) as a torn ligament, it was time for an MRI. Lucky enough for me, it was in the same building as that prior appointment to ensure that I had the proper amount of medical flashbacks prior to my entering.
Why do I insist on telling you all of my medical issues? The simple answer – because I can. Whether you agree with me or not, the medical profession and doctor visits in general lend themselves to ridicule. More importantly, my extreme awkwardness and uncomfortability with these visits give me a wealth of material from which to pull. I’m the worst patient in the history of medicine. It’s not even close.
So on to the MRI of my ankle. It all started well enough with a kind, efficient staff quickly man-handling me through the initial process. I was quickly escorted back to the ‘Temple of Doom’ where I was told by a burly guy to take off all my clothes except for my underwear and socks. He also handed me a robe and was gruffly told to put it on. Fine. I don’t know about you but when a burly guy tells you to strip down to your underwear, you do it. The robe was another matter. It wasn’t so much a ‘robe’ as a ‘paper towel’ with two strings. It was seriously that small. Tried to put it on and was immediately facing a severe shortage of paper issue – does the 6-inch wide opening go in the front or back? I must have switched it back and forth six times – and wasn’t happy with it either way. Finally I decided on the opening in the front. Don’t ask me why. PLEASE don’t ask me why. And don’t worry, in addition to being completely too small left and right, the up and down was no better. Only came to my waist. That’ll be fantastic.
So I make the walk of shame from the dressing room to the MRI room. It’s amazing to me that they can’t make that walk more private – where they wouldn’t WANT to make that walk more private. I get in the MRI room and proceed to lie down in the gaping mouth of the beast. Seriously, it looks like I’m about to be flushed down a sideways toilet. That’s a comforting feeling. They have nice cloud tiles on the ceiling so everything looks peaceful and relaxing. The machine turns on and…..
Suddenly everything starts constricting. It feels like someone is putting their hands around their neck and applying more and more pressure. I’m dying. I’m dying in my underwear and a paper towel wrapped my shoulders. It then hits me that I have a metal chain around my neck (closet rapper) and the magnetism is slowly killing me. I start waving my arms (still lying on my back) hoping to get burly guy’s attention. Finally, I manage to wedge my fingers around the clasp of the necklace and pry it apart and try to throw it somewhere far away from me. Luckily, burly guy finally wakes from his slumber and comes in and rescues me. Thank you burly guy. Crisis averted.
As far as the MRI is concerned, it was 30 minutes of the oddest and loudest noises that I’ve ever heard. Someone has to explain why they need to have 500 different noises, pops, whistles and groans during a simple ‘picture-taking’. My camera only produces one noise. I know why of course – it’s just so that they can annoy you even further. I was just falling asleep so burly guy noticed and even turned one ‘chorkle’ of noise up extra loud to wake me up and ensure my miserability. He was successful.
The rest of the MRI passed uneventfully. But don’t worry, I have another appointment to ‘review’ the MRI with Dr. Thumbs this afternoon. This time, my wife is coming to keep me calm. Or to record notes for the next blog – not really sure.
Don’t worry – I’ll keep you informed.