My Doctor, The Mechanic.


I can’t help feel that my experience with western medicine in finding out I have Low-Grade Fibromyxoid Sarcoma feels similar to when I take my car into a mechanic to have a “weird thing” looked at.

My leg had a bump, like my car may have a thumpy noise or a periodic clunk. I try to ignore these problems at first; denial is always the best policy early on as occasionally the worry just goes away on its own and then one need only make the appropriate sacrifices to the Gods to thank Them for removing that stress. But usually the problem lingers and finally I have to admit the worry has gotten to me and I go to an “expert” to be told what is wrong with me, or my car.

And just like the mechanic, the doctor tells me some possibilities it could be, usually dropping in a doozy in the middle of more benign suspicions. “If you are unlucky it could mean I will have to chop your leg off/remove your entire engine, and just hope for the best. But I’m sure it’s not that. Don’t worry.”

So I leave with a measure of fear now in my heart. I vow to make new sacrifices to the Gods, promise to be a better person, to take care of myself, or my car better from now on! Please let this be nothing big.

And then comes the call. They have taken a look and they saw something not so great. Better come in and see us.
When I arrive, they look at me with great concern in their faces. “You have cancer/ Your car needs an expensive repair.” And the news hits me right in the gut. This can’t be happening! I can’t afford this! No no no no! And I look at the concerned mechanic/doctor and wonder… was there REALLY something wrong? Did they go looking for trouble because that is how they make a living, that is what they do with their day, look for trouble to fix?

So I go home and get on the internet and try to find out if this possibly could be the simplest and only way. How did they get to this place of dire consequence?  And at the end of the day, I just don’t know enough to say for sure they are right or wrong, so I decide they MUST have my best interests at heart and I grimly nod and tell them to go ahead, preparing myself for the shock to my bank account or my body.

I just hope I don’t wake from my surgery and hear my doctor tell me that while they were in there they found out my water pump is shot, and my bearings are going and I will need a lot more work. Sometimes you just have to say no thanks, and drive on out of there and hope for the best.

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