4: The Receptionist’s Wrath

Molly arrived at her Doctors appointment a few minutes early and sat in the small waiting area. It then occurred to her that maybe she was reqired to check in, so she approached the reception desk. 

Without looking up, and in the flattest most annoyed tone, the receptionist asked, “Do you have an appointment.”

“Yes, I have one now, at 2 p.m. with Dr. Fissel,” said Molly with a smile. 

Again without looking up, “What’s your name?”

This annoyed Molly as clearly, if her appointment was at 2 p.m., and the receptionist was looking at the appointment book, she would see her name there. 

“My name is Molly Wahl”, she offered. 

“Healthcard,”replied the woman in a surly tone.

“Oh, sure, here you go,” Molly said, again trying to be helpful by hurriedly retrieving her card and presenting it.

“Have a seat,” said the woman, taking the card without ever once looking up.

What in the fuck of all fucks is wrong with this receptionist, thought Molly. Here I am, totally zonked out with what is likely a really bad concussion, and I have to deal with this miserable woman who’s actually getting paid to treat me, a tax payer, like a piece of shit?  Honestly. That kind of bullshit attitude really drove Molly around the bend. If you’re dealing with sick and injured people you can’t be an asshole. Period.

Once she was called in to Dr. Fissel’s office, Molly proceeded to tell him what had happened and how she was feeling. He nodded and listened politely saying it would take a couple of weeks to get over “this”. Then nodded some more and seemed to have nothing more to offer.

“Do I have a concussion?” she asked.

“Well, maybe, it’s very hard to determine these things,” he said.

“But why else would I be feeling all of these strange effects to light and sound and just …normal daily things? I feel like when I drive I’m actually a bit dangerous, I’m not really there. What should I be doing? Should I be going to work?”

He gave a light-hearted laugh, “ohh, ya, you dinged yourself, it’ll take a couple of weeks before you feel like yourself again.” With that he had nothing more to offer.

Molly left the office feeling even more confused by her doctors lack of information and guidance, it was almost like he hadn’t wanted to say much. Wasn’t it his job to explain and guide people dealing with injury or illness?  Weird, the whole experience was just weird.  

In the following week Molly experienced some intense headaches that were so bad they kept her up at night and had her bawling, terrified she was having the dreaded brain bleed she read about on Google. Google always mentioned that before you die you get this headache that is the montezuma’s revenge of headaches, the worst head ache of all time. One time she called Frank in the middle of the night, screaming through her tears, terrified she was dying. He talked her down and more than a little afraid himself, he drove down to see Molly the next day.

Molly booked another appointment with Dr. Fissel. 

It was on her second visit that Dr. Fissel begrudgingly agreed, after hearing about her head aches and continued symptoms that, “yes, you probably have a concussion, but I’m not an expert, so I’m going to refer you to a neurologist for a consult. Also, I don’t deal with insurance companies so I can’t help you if you need any insurance paperwork.”

He stated this in such a way that Molly could see he’d had past experiences that made him want to avoid insurance claims like the plague. The thing is, Molly didn’t have a claim, and was confused by why he would bring up insurance claims. She had never made an insurance claim on anything in her life.  

She later realized that Dr. Fissel actually knew more about what was about to happen to her than he was letting on.  Molly’s brain injury was bad enough that it did warrant an insurance claim, because she would need rehabilitation, time off of work and physiotherapy and on and on and on; and that would all begin with a healthcare professional, like her family doctor, indicating that yes, on presentation after her car accident, it was highly likely that yes, she had a concussion.  Which as he had indicated, he would not be willing to do.