There is a fair bit of mental gymnastics that go on in the days after I have stepped inside a doctor's domain. It involves reverse jumping through the mental hoops I jumped through while in the sanctum of his surgery so that I can gather up my own health, and my own responsibility for it, so that I can leave his office not feeling like I'm walking out of the principal's office and that I'm six years old.
I don't know if that makes any sense at all. I always feel like this, though. I do not know how many other people feel the way I do about doctors, or whether this is indication number 38,395,853 of my uber sensitivity. Because I am, unfortunately, rather over-sensitive to other people telling me what to do. Even if I'm there asking for the advice.
Today I walked in, having certain thoughts about what I was there for, the information that I wanted. Along with that I had certain expectations, I guess, about what I thought was going to happen.
When I left the doctor's surgery this afternoon, I had exactly the things I went in for - two bits of paper to two different places requesting a blood test and a hair mineral analysis test to try to find some more answers. I also had another piece of paper for another test that I don't even know what it is, because we didn't get around to that. I also left with a few supplements I didn't know I was going to get, and a few other pieces of paper, one being about all the dairy I can't eat, and all the alternatives that I could have instead, none of which in the least take my fancy except for coconut cream.
Even though I got the tests I asked for, in the space of entering the doctor's surgery I feel like my health and my body has been taken from me, where it belongs, and deposited into his bits of paper, his advice and suggestions, some of which contradicts other advice I've received from other doctors who also have faith and belief in their approach.
Which isn't to say that he isn't right to have that faith and belief. Just that I've seen enough to know that five different doctors means five different approaches and contradictions amongst them all. Meanwhile, it's frustrating in the meantime, because you have to take on board their approach, all the while not knowing if it is going to be in the least bit helpful for you, whether you are wasting your money. And where does gut-feel fit into doctor's orders? What if you have a feeling that your doctor is barking up the wrong tree? Where does that fit into a standard general practitionerly consultation? It doesn't.
But anyway, I digress, because I don't feel too much of a concern about that here. The main problem I have left with today is a gut-feel that he is right, when I don't want him to be, and I am going to have to learn how to live without dairy. And wheat. And sugar.
The last two aren't so bad. And that leads me to believe that once I wrap my head around it I can largely quit dairy if I can largely quit wheat and sugar, something I wouldn't have believed 15 years ago. But quitting dairy as well as those? Quitting cheese!! I don't think it's going to be anything other than a Real. Hard. Struggle. Because I think I am addicted to it. And the doctor thinks that perhaps it is causing some of my anxiety issues. And a lot of other people have found the same thing. And I dread to think that perhaps I am going to be one of those people who can't tolerate dairy.
I think this doctor is quite a lovely man. But I always feel strange afterwards. Resentful that they have all the power, when we're talking about my health. I have to go through a process of reverse hoop jumping where I have to say to myself, very slowly so that I can understand it, that this is my health, that I am still in charge, that really, the doctor is a fallible human being and that I really don't have to do anything he asks me to do if I don't want to. That I am free not to, because he's not the cops. I then go on to remind myself, very slowly so that I can understand it, that this is my health, though, and I have paid the doctor for his expertise, and to be childish and close-minded about anything that happens defeats the entire purpose of going in the first place.
There was so much discussed in this consultation that my head is spinning, so that everything we covered today is sitting in a pile in front of me, waiting for my brain and mind to digest it down into my own language so I can eat it and work out what I think about it all.
When I told the doctor how much I struggle with the idea of giving up dairy, he became a bit of a schoolteacher, telling me in so many words that I'm up against the wall, and that I will need to buck up, and suck it up, which made me want to tell him to fuck up. Instead, I burst into tears a bit further down the track when he asked me if I was having problems with depression or anxiety, thus adding further glitter to the feeling that going to visit the doctor's office always feels like I'm going for a pap smear, even when I'm not.