The Once A Year Checkup

 Ever the bad scheduler of my life, I had to ride from downtown to the VA hospital on my lunch break for a quick appointment with the doc who prescribes my anti-depressant. I knew it would be a quick visit. Maybe that’s why I scheduled it that way. But, it sure made for a mad dash across town on the bike. 

As much as I enjoy the bike, I did wonder if taking the bus would be faster. I could have made it. But, I chose to just get on the bike and start heading east as fast as I could. By the time I ended up at 9th and Colorado, the shins on my exposed legs were spattered with mud from the morning moisture. My shoes were damp. And there was a little bit of mud spatter on my backpack. But, I beat the bus. How did I know? The bus pulled up next to me at the intersection. That made me smile. 

I arrived 15 minutes early for my appointment. After checking in, I went up to the waiting area on the second floor and enjoyed listening to three old vets debate the proper tax rate of marijuana. Just as they transitioned to alternative fuel patent conspiracy theories, the doc came out to save me. 

It had been over a year since I had seen him. And quite frankly, I think I was surprised that not only did he recognize me, but that I recognized him. It looked like he had aged. He certainly looked older than my mind was imagining. 

I don’t recall at the moment, whether it’s psychologists or psychiatrists who can prescribe. I’ll try to remember to find the time to fire up the google machine later. At any rate, he’s the kind who can prescribe. The way the VA works, you spend most of your time talking with a licenced clinical social worker. But, if you need some kind of medicine, you talk with the prescribing doc. Every time I’ve spoken with him, each appointment is essentially him asking how things are going. I tell him. And he gives me a years worth of refills. For some reason, the last time I had seen him was over a year ago. So, we had some catching up to do. Once he was satisfied enough to authorize the refills, he turned to the computer and did some typing. 

DApparently, you can now get your meds mailed to you. How cool is that! Also, I need to do that ever important once a year income declaration. And then I promptly forgot to do that on my way out. Oh well. I’ll have more time to do that in two weeks when I’m back to see my LCSW. 

I’m quite proud of myself. Before we concluded our brief visit, I asked if he knew what I would need to do to get prescribed hormones at the VA. He told me that I would have to have a primary care doctor. Because I’ve only used the VA for counseling and one ER visit, I don’t have a primary care doc. He tried to get the request going on his computer. But, it wasn’t working for him. So, I’ll try to get back early before my next appointment to get that done. I’m currently getting my hormones from overseas. It’s the same dosage my private practice doc prescribed. But, I couldn’t afford to see her anymore. I’m glad the VA has had a change of heart recently about hormone replacement therapy. When I can finally get it going, it will save me a lot of money. Money I can put toward further hair removal. 

All in all, this visit totaled 24 minutes. It took me longer to ride down there. I wonder if we’ll recognize each other the next time 


About Frogtosser

A former sailor and pizza maker who is done hiding from the world and is now living life to it's fullest extent. I'm a single speed bicycle commuter who enjoys writing and photography. I'm a voracious reader. And a huge geek!
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