Climbing the single flight of stairs to the Doc’s office I could feel my heart start to race and not because of the cardio output with each step. I’m generally not afraid of much with a few specific exceptions. The physician is up there but not the peak of fear mountain. Hospitals, number 1 on the list for obvious reasons. With the help of others I’ve come to realize the reason for the fear. All I’ve ever seen in hospitals is pain and death. Example:  While living in Scottsdale, Stephanie went to the hospital for the flu and I waited in public “waiting” room.” There were two people, one guy sitting across the room hacking death molecules into the air with disregard for covering his mouth and one sweet woman sitting next to me. I thought, “I can do this,” thought too soon. The doors opened and a nurse and Police Officer came out and proceeded to tell my waiting buddy that her Mother did not survive the accident, dammit. I quickly removed myself to the back, to wait with Stephanie. I must have pumped a half a gallon of hand sanitiser while back there.

 I’ve sat by and watched as multiple important people in my life have finished their lives…in hospitals. I guess I’ve never really been lucky enough to see the great side, people being revived and saved and how about babies; new life. I’ve always been struck by the dicotomy of the hospital universe; birth and death all under one roof. I think all of my grandparents spent the last moments of their lives inside the walls of supposed care. I watched as one of my great friends was misdiagnosed; “no cancer present.” He was transferred to a different hospital; a correct diagnosis with less than a year to live. Recently my sister lost her battle, guess where, in a hospital. Perhaps one of these days I will have kids of my own and experience the happy wing in the buildings of doom.

So I find myself in the Doctors office this morning, high blood pressure. That’s no shock as I revealed my nervousness and perhaps over indulgence of morning coffee. The Doc slowly creeks open the door, I have a visible shake at this point. Turns out he is a pretty damn good Doctor that puts me at ease right away, even laughing at my nervous “Chandler” style jokes. Humor has always been my chosen defense mechanism, bad humor at that. Diagnosis: I have Lateral Epicondylitis, acute Tennis Elbow in both arms. I have Impingement with Bursitis-Tendinitis in my left shoulder as well. Treatment: two weeks with no golf swings, 3-4 weeks physical therapy, bitchin anti-inflammatory, next visit in 6-7 weeks…not the amputation I was expecting. I have to do this therapy if I want to be pain-free, I say this out loud because I havn’t always been responsible with treatments. I will stand in front of this and meet it head on, just like so many difficult shots I’ve hit and made in my life (metaphor).