Friday morning I had a zoom meeting with my local oncologist. It was supposed to be a quick meeting of the minds so I could get started on my new treatment. Since my new treatment is not a chemotherapy agent, it literally would take just a writing of a prescription. I figured this would be easy. I should have known better. We started out our first ever zoom meeting with my local doctor with him taking a phone call less than 2 minutes into our conversation. He hadn’t read the message I sent him or the progress notes my Mayo doctor had sent him. In our 10 minute zoom meeting, he took two phone calls and left his office….leaving us to chat with his resident, who really was in no position to be able to help us with what needed to be done. When he finally gave us his attention, he looked up aromatase inhibitors in cancer treatment and found a study about a combination of drugs my specialist and I had not talked about and that was recommended for endometrial cancer (which I have never had). He thought we should try that instead. He told me he would email my doctor at the Mayo clinic and they would discuss it and get back to me. The British term “gobsmacked” is the most appropriate word to describe how I felt. I had a plan with my specialist 16 hours prior and now this man was throwing a monkey wrench in things. The longer I thought about it, the more mad I got. I emailed my specialist and told him what had happened and I didn’t feel comfortable taking any drug cocktail until he and I spoke about it first. I want to mention that my dr at the Mayo Clinic is the head of sarcoma specialists. He is the big wig. He did a zoom meeting with Rich and me for 25 minutes and never once answered his phone to interrupt our appointment. Sigh. When I sent my message to the Mayo doc, I noticed his RN is on vacation until March 23rd…which made my heart plummet. Dr’s have their nurses go through all their email first….so I figured I was never going to get this resolved. However, Friday evening, I received a message from my Mayo doctor saying that our original plan should be carried out and not what my local doctor suggested because it was inappropriate for my situation. I forwarded that to my local doctor and hope to hear from his nurse on Monday saying that I have a script pending. Why does this have to be so hard? I could be mistaken on this, but this is how I FEEL: I feel that my local doctor looks at me and sees a disease…not a person. He doesn’t care about my quality of life or my questions and concerns. Is it because I am a woman? Perhaps. He always asks Rich about his business…yet never asks me how I am feeling. Is it because I ask questions? A lot of them? Is it because I educate myself so I can ask intelligent questions about my treatment options? I am going to once again ask that I don’t have appointments with him any longer but only with his nurse practitioner. My heart goes out to his elderly patients who just sit and accept everything he throws at them without question. Why don’t I change doctors? Well, this guy is in charge of everyone, so everyone has to go through him. I was assigned to him because I have such a rare cancer. I love the rest of the staff and the hospital, which is why I don’t want to change hospital systems at this point. So I am praying. Praying for this doctor that I am so upset with. Praying for his other patients. Praying that I get a call on Monday clarifying what is going on with me so I can move forward without too much wasted time. We want to travel a bit at the end of the month and I want to know what my side effects are going to be like prior to just taking off on a cross country road trip.
Special thanks to my good friend, Fiona, who sent me a delicious chocolate birthday cake! Due to the deep freeze here in Nebraska and there in Texas, it was postponed until this week. So I am still partying and enjoying my cake! Thank you Fiona!
I also want to mention that I was able to zoom with my Nazareth group last night! What’s a Nazareth group? We are a group of 12 people who get together (pre COVID) for a potluck dinner at our host’s home…then we have structured fellowship and do Lectio Divina ( a type of meditation) on the next Sunday’s Gospel reading. It had been A LONG time since I had been able to get together with these people that I consider family. It was so wonderful to see their faces and be able to talk about our families….pray for each other….it was like going home for Christmas after being away for your freshman year of college. I am really looking forward to being able to meet in person again…maybe this summer!