For my plantar fasciatis (since the summer of 2000), I see a podiatrist outside of my Kaiser Permanente HMO. He’s fantastic. He’s mentioned in Shirley McLaine’s book.
I see him today and he notes my feet are swollen (he calls it edema and recommends I see a vascular specialist) and he recommends I wrap an ase bandage around my feet every night and wear support stockings.
Support stockings? Which type would be most flattering to my figure?
This is not how I saw my life turning out.
I fear that I may be pregnant. And I’m not even married!
Thank God the doctor didn’t recommend I also wear teddies and high heels.
That would not have done my reputation any good with the rabbis.
Oy, the shame!
And it all cost me $150.
Normally I get a lot more joy for such expenditures.
Tuesday afternoon. I hit Kaiser. I pass a sign saying "Bladder Control Workshop."
Stephen J. Gertz writes: "I can’t incontinence this decision of yours, Luke."
Michel writes: "Are you sure Luke? You’re moving up those stoney grey steps of life … You might have to reconsider Luke …"
I make my $25 copayment.
I walk to the doctor’s office past an office labeled "Decedent Affairs."
I sit near a young black girl who must weigh 280 pounds. She’s reading a romance novel with a racy cover.
How come my doctors visits aren’t like the movies, the ones starring sexy nurses and candystripers?
After a 30 minute wait, I get my doctor. She’s young, hot and blonde. She’s tall with long hair and creamy skin. She’s peppy. She loves the referral letter from my podiatrist because it says for treatment, "Up to you!"
She loves it!
She writes a long entry on my computer chart. She asks me if I smoke or do drugs or drink. I say no. She asks about my lithium consumption. I say none in the past six months.
She puts on plastic gloves and examines my feet.
Then she chitchats with me before removing her gloves and running her bare hands over my aching feet. There’s no plastic protection between her skin and mine.
Bliss is it in this dawn to be alive, but to be single is very heaven!
I ask her if my high salt consumption could account for my swollen feet — though by now the blood has poured out of my feet and hurtled upwards to another part of my anatomy, puddling in a big red angry mess. She says yes.
That big ol’ wedding ring rock on her right hand don’t bother me none. My intentions are only honorable. No rabbi can castigate me for enjoying her touch — it is for the sake of my life!
I whine about the prospect of wearing support stockings. She says they’re nothing to be ashamed of.
And then she raises her pants above her knees and shows me her tall firm black socks that could just as well be support stockings. Her skin is sweet and blonde. I want to get down on my knees and worship her. Hear, O Israel…
"I’ll be on my feet for 12 hours," she explains. "They prevent my feet from swelling."
Oy, the swelling, the swelling!
She’s the best doctor. I’d make her my primary care doctor but I like the Chinese one I’ve got.
She suggests I cut down on salt and refined foods.
I’ll do anything she asks. Anything!
I walk home, passing Circuit City. There’s a beautiful brunette in a poster offering me her one-price guarantee!
I believe you! I trust you! I’ll make all your dreams come true!
God rest ye merry, gentlemen, let nothing you dismay,
Remember Christ our Savior was born on Christmas Day;
To save us all from Satan’s power when we were gone astray.
O tidings of comfort and joy, comfort and joy;
O tidings of comfort and joy.
In Bethlehem, in Israel, this blessèd Babe was born,
And laid within a manger upon this blessèd morn;
The which His mother Mary did nothing take in scorn.
From God our heavenly Father a blessèd angel came;
And unto certain shepherds brought tidings of the same;
How that in Bethlehem was born the Son of God by name.
“Fear not, then,” said the angel, “Let nothing you afright
This day is born a Savior of a pure Virgin bright,
To free all those who trust in Him from Satan’s power and might.”