Thursday, November 18, 2021

Putting on my Grumpy Pants.

 I knew that today was going to be a tough day. It was scan day, and anyone who has ever dealt with cancer, knows about 'scanxiety'. It became a real problem for me right off the bat, when I'd go to get the scan, and they'd be unsure about things, so I had to travel to Pittsburgh for a followup. It was always an agonizing, worrisome wait. Finally after a couple times of this, I decided to skip the first step and just go to the big hospital, and for about five years that worked. Then they stopped doing the preventative stuff and wanted me to begin going back to the local hospital. 

Me, being me, simply ignored everything for about four years until my GP got so vocal about it that I just let them set up the appointment and went, like a good little soldier. When I got there, the technician got quite upset because I had a cancer history, and I should have told them. I said, "I didn't make the appointment. Isn't right there in your records?" She was upset, and I was upset because I didn't even want to be there to begin with, and she couldn't understand that either. I said, "Well, it is a scary thing to have things get done here only to be sent somewhere else for a second opinion..." 

She looked at me and said, "That has never happened."

I was a bit gobsmacked. "It certainly did...at least twice..."

She brusquely said, "I've been here a long time, and we've never referred anyone to Pittsburgh."

She was calling me a liar, without saying the word, and it made me mad. She kept saying, "Listen, I don't know what the problem is..." 

By that point, I was done talking, I just wanted the stupid test completed and I wanted to leave. 

Fast forward:

Because I am a butt head, I delayed this scan by a few months too. My GP is pretty persistent, and so once again, the appointment was made. 

I get to the hospital today in all my anxious glory, and the receptionist looked at the paperwork I handed her. "Wait...you've had cancer?" 

Inwardly, I groaned. "Yes." 

She told me that she needed to talk to the technician, and I saw the whole thing playing out again. "We do screenings for people with a history of cancer in the afternoons..." 

Thank god for masks. I said, "Why don't we just reschedule this to a time that works for you?" 

I think she was a little surprised at my graciousness. I was glad that she couldn't read my mind. It was not her fault. I don't even know where the communication breakdown IS, but I simply was not going to do a replay of my previous experience. 

I walked back out to my car in the rain with my new appointment.

I was supposed to go back to work, but I was about fed up with that place too. This morning, they announced that we would be working 10 hour days next week. We are also working Saturday. 

The supervisor said, "That will give you all a chance to make up for losing Thursday." (We do not get holiday pay for Thanksgiving.) She sounded thrilled for us. The reason is that they are afraid that we will get behind. 

So...we will be working long days right up to Thanksgiving, and then working Friday and Saturday on top of it. On a holiday weekend. People travel. Family comes in. People have plans. 

It's bullshit. It's all bullshit. The thing is, we are not behind. If we get one day behind, we can work the over time the following week AFTER the holiday, but to screw up everyone's holiday because we might have a problem? That's bullshit. 

I was not the only angry person there. The place was buzzing. 

So walking through the rain, I was mad about the confusion about the scan. I was mad about my lost holiday weekend. I was just mad. 

I should have gone back to work, but you know what? I took me to Tim Horton's and I got a large vanilla ice capp. I sat in my car and drank caffeine while I watched it rain. And when I was done feeling like I wanted to yell at someone, me and my grumpy pants went back to work.


23 comments:

Mr. Shife said...

If I told you I was singing a rendition of "Tomorrow" from Annie would that help?
Hope your day gets a little better and the vanilla iced caffeine concoction helped.
Take care and sorry to hear about work and the hospital being difficult.

Ed said...

I don't miss the nine to five or in your case seven to five stuff... for exactly that reason.

Pixie said...

We only do scans for people who've had cancer in the afternoon? WTF. I don't know what kind of scan you were having but it makes no difference if you've had cancer or not.

And your work sucks big time. You get to make up for losing Thursday? Really? I'm surprised you didn't punch anybody in the throat.

The bike shed said...

Scanxiety is an expression that's new to me - I shall use that from now on!
It sound like the sort of day that I would be ever so anxious and annoyed. I know my Jane would be much more understanding and calmer than me. Maybe I should try to be more like her - or maybe I should get some great big grumpy pants too. I think I'll go for the pants!!!
PS Wishing you well and best of luck for the scan

Andrew said...

The world is full of fools and incompetents. Expect the worst of every situation and if it turns out well, you can be very happy.

Margaret said...

These experiences on top of the anxiety would drive me over the edge. You were calm and gracious which I admire. I've not had cancer (yet) but I have many worries too because of all my friends who have. Sorry about work! People can be such jerks.

DrumMajor said...

I'd write a letter to the hospital CEO. That's disrespectful treatment from the staff. He needs to be alerted when you have to go again, in order to realign the radiology staff. The doc making the appointments needs to mention your cancer diagnosis. Ask them what the difference is. I spent 4 years as an RN in oncology, and subsequently with patients on hospice due to cancer. Not sure why they have to know....if they DO know, it usually makes staffers be a little more understanding....Linda in Kansas

sparklingmerlot said...

I admire your self control. I would have lost my cool at the scan and then announced loudly I QUIT at work. I have done that before. Very satisfying.

Red said...

You don't need either one of these situations...scan and extra work. People with a cancer situation do not need to

Debby said...

I want to be perfectly clear, the cancer situation is all precautionary stuff, but I've never understood all the cheering and "I beat cancer!" I have a cancer that has a 1 in 3 chance to show up somewhere else, so in a quiet little place inside, I always feel like I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. It's gotten better, really. It used to be a sick feeling deep inside. After 12 years, it's changed into something I don't spend a lot of time worrying about but any kind of testing reawakens the monster at the back of my brain.

Work? I've decided to address it during morning meeting. I'm going to be respectful, but I see two other ways that this could have been handled without cutting into everyone's holiday time, and I think it is fair to point those things out before we get into next month's holidays.

I'll let you know how that goes.

Dc said...

Appalling on both fronts. Incompetence and poor working ethics made me shout a few times, needing to send stinking letters (always got a quick response).

JayCee said...

Sounds like a good plan. Hope it turns out well both that and the scan.

Tasker Dunham said...

The world needs a re-balancing of influence between employers and employees.

Ellen D. said...

Good luck with the scan and with the work/holiday situation! You should speak up!

Steve Reed said...

Well, it definitely sounds like you have some reasons to be grumpy. Why can't your doctor's office make clear to the hospital when they make the appointment that you had cancer, thus avoiding all the drama? And I agree with you about work -- demanding that people work 10 hour days during Thanksgiving week sounds downright cruel.

ellie k said...

I just had my 5 year follow up tests for breast cancer, the exam part went very well I think. I went to sleep and the next thing I knew the doctor was saying you must be very tired, I said that was a really short breast exam and than I realized I did not remember one thing about it. I slept through the whole thing. Every thing came back ok, I pray you will get the same results.

northsider said...

You meet tin gods and jobs worths everywhere. Hope you still have a good weekend Debby.

jeanie said...

It might have looked like any other day of the week, but deep down that day KNEW it was a Monday.

Anvilcloud said...

An American going to Tim Hortons just thrills the heck out of me. It just about makes everything better doncha think? Truth be told I like McD's coffee better, but don't tell anyone. lol

Yorkshire Pudding said...

Not one of your best days then Debby.

Pixie said...

I finally realized who your boss reminds me of, Scrooge!

Kay said...

10 hour days??? Holey moly! That's crazy! I'm so glad you're retiring soon from that company. I feel sorry for the others who have to keep working there. Do please follow Linda from Kansas' advice. She would know.

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