I have long believed that setting goals and careful planning are the keys to success.
Since I can practically hear my family and friends snickering in a disbelieving manner, I should point out that I said I believe this is true, I didn't say I always do it.
However, this idea was firmly in my mind last week as Opie was driving me to the doctor. I was focused, determined and planning toward 1 specific goal:
To get a prescription for antibiotics WITHOUT having to endure the horrible "gag me with a ginormous Q-tip while I try not to puke" test they do to diagnose strep throat.
Opie was oddly unenthusiastic about the entire plan. "This," he predicted darkly, "is going to be like that time I took you to the ER with stomach pains and you started demanding the good drugs and they thought you were some sort of addict."
Like it's my fault the ER employees had no sense of humor.
"This is different," I croaked. "This isn't some sort of medical mystery. I have strep throat. I know it, you know it, the doctor should take our word for it."
Which may sound conceited but the thing is, I read a lot of WebMD.
Plus, I get strep throat with alarming frequency. Which made sense when I taught high school and basically spent my days wading through a foul wonderland of germs. But, strange as it may seem, working at home has been even worse. It's like the isolation has turned me into some ultra-sensitive bubble girl. I'm actually pretty convinced that if someone with strep drives down the street in front of my house, the germ will zero in on me like a throat-seeking missile and attack.
So there was no test necessary: I knew I had strep throat. And step one of the "no ginormous Q-tip" plan was to convey this thought often and with confidence.
"I have strep throat," I told the receptionist when she asked why I was there.
"It's definitely strep," I assured the nurse as she took my blood pressure.
"At first I thought the sore throat was from seasonal allergies," I told the doctor. "But then I realized it's strep."
"She gets strep a lot," Opie said helpfully.
"I'm going to need to check it out." The doctor said, doing that annoying thing where she acts like she knows sooooo much more about medicine than I do just because she's had 2 decades of school and experience.
Seriously, some people are so arrogant.
Anyway, she got out her flashlight and I braced myself for the Q-tip. But then she looked at my throat, "Yah," she said thoughtfully. "That's a lot of pus."
"That's my least favorite word," I told her sweetly.
And, for a moment, I was pretty sure I had just ruined everything, but a miracle occurred.
Instead of thinking I was crazy (like most doctors do) she thought I was funny!
"It's not pus," she said struggling for the right words. "It's fluffy white....white....bunnies!"
"Cotton candy?" I suggested. "Or clouds?"
"Clouds!" She agreed. "You have fluffy white clouds in your throat."
And then she said, "Let me get you a prescription!" Without a Q-tip in sight!
Though I must say, Opie was oddly unimpressed. "You understand that your throat looked SO BAD that she just gave you TEN DAYS of antibiotics, right? That's not exactly winning."
Which just goes to show you that, although he's a smart guy, Opie doesn't really understand the competitive nature of doctor visits.
So, in summary, I'm the clear champion of the medical tournament, I've been swilling down antibiotics like there's no tomorrow and am on the mend, and Opie is obviously jealous of the way I stay focused on my goals.