In this message, he tells me that he has written a spoken word piece that he thinks I could really give voice to, and asks if I'd be interested in reading it. Then, a few hours later, he sent the completed story on, asking if I'd let him know what I thought. I missed the original message, but responded as soon as I could saying, I'd love to read it, and I'd get right on it.
This is what I was given:
Hey Ephemily,Just wanted to put a bug in your ear about an Idea that I think you would be a wonderful mouthpiece for. My fiancé has been diagnosed with Diabetes. I was looking at a product to help with the disease and had a flash of inspiration. Here we go. This would be from your perspective.
So I had an appointment with my Doctor the other day , you know the usual kind of a “check up”. You know, the ones where you hear “You may feel a slight pinch” or “This may be a little cool”.I am so tickled to be asked to give a voice to this. The political climate of this election year, along with a changing climate for women's rights and health care has really been rubbing me the wrong way recently. I'm not typically a pundit, or politically active, but I think much of what's going on is wrong, invasive, and needs to be examined very closely. This goes beyond Roe v Wade. This flirts with the line between oppression and discrimination. In case you're not aware of them, here are some examples of laws that are either actually on the books, or have been proposed.
After sitting in his office waiting room with this inane musak on the speaker and listening to all of the sniffles and coughs and hacks and who knows what suffering, I finally get called into see him. He is sitting there all dressed up in a white lab coat, yellow and blue striped tie bent to the side, leaning back in his chair. His penny loafers on the desk, and he’s chuckling at a joke from an old Details magazine. He puts it down as I come in.
“Please have a seat.”
I plop down and look at him.
“I have your results here and it isn’t the best thing I get to tell a patient.”
I bite my lip a little and nod.
“ You have type II Diatribis.” *mumble a little*
“Diabetes type two fucking Diabetes? I fucking LOVE jelly donuts you did not just tell me that.” *loud*
“No you have diatribes --- symptoms include going on tirades, haranguing on subjects in forms both abstract and concrete, among others. Have you been involved with any bitter or sharply abusive denunciations or attacks or even God forbid…criticisms? “
“Well for about 6 months, I have been hanging out with these people at the Pizza Shoppe Collective…”
“Pizza is never good for Diatribis …it gets these notions of taste and fulfillment from a meal over and above the need for sustenance. So here is my prescription. You are going to have to take these Insolent shots until you conform and stop deviating from our societal norms. I would highly recommend you stop hanging out with these snarky types as well. We found that out in the 60’s you know.” He lowers his eyes over his bifocals “…and lay off the pizza. You could stand to lose a few.”
As my skin starts to get hot, and my eyes dilate in rage, he leans back in his chair the old spring just creaking and creaking and creaking.
I was shocked. (stare at the audience for a solid 15 seconds while rubbing your arms.. then wake up) This Asshole did not just say that to me! And that noise the spring in his chair was making hit that spot in your inner ear. You know, the one that shuts off the part in your brain that tells you it’s NOT ok to stab this fucker in the eye with that stupid fucking wooden duck decoy on his desk.
Still leaning back, with this smug look on his face, he says “The nurse will get your pills for you on the way out, and we have pamphlets for your dietary concerns…”
That was it. Something broke, and all the steam that was in my head burst right out of my mouth. “You know what? I have a recommendation for you…how long has it been since your last check up? Hmmm and you are over 50…yes?”
I saunter sweetly around his desk locking my eyes on his.
“We need to check out just how many polyps have sprung up in that old Sphincter of yours. “
I grab him by that Dilbert knock-off tie and throw that man over his desk and reach back behind me and pull this speculum out of the frickin glass and mahogany display case he has it in. Yeah this one right here. * hold it up for inspection*
“Now open up and say ahhhh.” He does, only it’s a scream. Meh. Good enough for government work.
I lean in really close to him and whisper a couple of sweet nothings in his ear.
“Could you tell me why my Vagina needs to be opened up like that and your colon doesn’t?”
I ratchet him up a little more.
“Could you tell me why giving men erections is more important than curing breast cancer?”
I crank it up another notch and dangle the pink ribbon I have pulled from my hair over his face.
“If you hadn’t been so busy figuring out what to sell us to get us sick so you could sell us a cure maybe your condition wouldn’t have progressed this far Doctor.”
I crank it open just a weee bit more and tie the ribbon onto his dangly bits.
“I think you are ready for my diagnosis doctor. You have Hypercriticalism. Now that can have to deal with the endocrine gland, but in this case it looks like the amount of interest you can draw from your integrity gland is directly proportionate to the faith you have in your Oath contained in your Hippocampus. You remember you oath don’t you DR? The one you took at the beginning of your training? “
At this point he begins crying. And I say “oh hush hush. Keep it down baby. We are almost done.”
“Looks like we caught this just in time. Your case is about to go critical, and if I don’t balance out your 4 humors, there will be an issue here. Your phlegm has you unemotional about it…until now. Your black bile levels are up, which makes you so despondent. Your yellow bile has you bad tempered, and the only thing that’s going to help you be more courageous and hopeful is a good old fashioned bloodletting… Let me help you with that.” He blanches, his eyes go wide, and a see a bloom of icy sweat on his brow as I reach for the letter opener on his desk. Not long after, flipping the nurse with my prescription the bird, I strut out of there, never to return. Do no harm, and Ephemily will do no harm to you.
You all may have noticed but my pink ribbon it has some red on it. A souvenir, if you will.
In Utah, it's illegal to have a miscarriage. Or rather, potentially illegal. If you suffer the loss of your child, the law has the right to examine the circumstance and if they feel that you were trying to terminate the pregnancy, you can be charged with murder. Meaning, klutzes like me best take the elevator, because if you fall down the stairs, you could be looking at jail time.
Kansas and Arizona have legislation that allows a doctor to withhold information from their patient if they believe it would cause a woman to choose to terminate their pregnancy. This means that if your child will be born with severe birth defects, impacting their quality of life, your doctor can choose not to tell you about it. Or, if the pregnancy might endanger your own life to carry it to term, you might not get that information because your doctor puts your unborn child's health over your own. This is scary shit people!
We also can't ignore morality clauses that allow doctors and pharmacists to choose not to dispense prescriptions for birth control or emergency contraception because of their religious beliefs. Now, I'm not opposing the right to not use these products for yourself. But, I do have a problem with someone making that choice for someone else. Especially if time is of the essence in the case of Plan B, and the provider in question keeps the written prescription, forcing the patient to contact their doctor again.
Then, there's state sponsored rape, the requirement for women to have a trans-vaginal ultrasound before they can have an abortion in Virginia. What's worse is that there are more states hopping on board with that idea! Why on earth is this acceptable for the state to do this? There are no invasive procedures to undergo for men should they want to have a vasectomy. I don't understand why the health care industry has to have a "conscience" about reproduction. Science, by nature, must remain cool and detached for it to be effective. Why is that different in the health care industry? You can argue that it's both the almighty dollar AND religious organizations with deep pockets. You'd probably right, and it makes me very, deeply sad. ladies, I'll continue to use my mouth as a vehicle to raise awareness. This isn't right, and we shouldn't just "lie back and think of England" as it's happening.