So I looked up at this lady in the lobby of Atlanta’s High Museum of Art while trying to eat a salad (bad choice after Novocaine), and thought about the past two weeks of being prodded, pressed, probed, and pricked daily at one doctor’s office or another as I’m blasting through the exhaustive list of tasks for medical and legal clearance for the Peace Corps. And I said out loud, “Hashtag Mood, girlfriend. I feel ya’.”
It wasn’t the gyno with his hand up me asking, “How much are they paying you? Seriously, how much?” that got me.
It wasn’t the nurse who told me how the only FDA-approved Yellow Fever vaccination was made in a facility in Puerto Rico that was destroyed in Hurricane Maria and so I needed to sign this extensive informed consent about the temporarily-approved replacement that got me.
It wasn’t the ten vials of blood or the email from the Peace Corps legal department saying something didn’t match or the endless back-and-forth to the safety deposit box at the bank.
It wasn’t even the urgency I felt to finally nail an appointment to test the Snuffalufagus drugs, complicated by the fact that I was scheduled for frickin’ jury duty today.
It was the filling of a simple cavity at the dentist yesterday.
I had brought the diagram-heavy forms that I needed the dentist to fill out. He looked at them for a bit and said, “They are so much more extensive and detailed than any other forms I’ve had to complete. When do you need them?” I smiled and said I couldn’t leave the office without them — woman on a mission (and a timeline) that I am — and he laughed and kindly obliged.
But as I was Traveling at the Speed of Bike through Piedmont Park on my purposely-circuitous route back to a MARTA train station, it hit me, and I stopped by the lake reflecting the buildings of Midtown to catch my breath, and to reflect a bit myself. These required forms (plus uploaded X-rays) were not only to determine that I was up-to-date on my dental care before serving in Uganda. These dental forms were in case I needed to be identified.
After leaving the park and meandering through a hilly neighborhood, I locked my bike in the Woodruff Arts Center garage and went to see that lady. And we sat together for a bit, just she and I, connected in solidarity somehow. Just feelin’ each other’s mood.
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