See that picture up there to the right? The one that wasn’t there until now? That would be me. See those beautiful glasses I’m wearing? Well, they’re new. And guess what? They only cost me about $1,000…and counting.
I know what you’re thinking. You’re wondering how fast you can save up your money to get your own matching pair of X-Ray vision glasses that turns shit into gold and equips you with Clark Kent’s ability to see thru walls.
As it turns out, mine can’t actually do any of that. I know. You’d think with such a hefty price tag, cool features like that would be built in somehow, right? Wrong.
Okay. So—technically—I only paid about $30 or $50 for the glasses, seeing as I have vision insurance. The $1000 actually came after my optometrist told me he saw something during my eye exam that he’d like to take a closer look at, so could I please schedule a time to come back to have my eyes dilated? Sure.
His disclaimer? It’s nothing too serious.
I went back, had my pupils dilated to the point where I resembled a drugged out crazy person, only to have him nod and tell me something looked a little swollen, so could I please get with the front desk and have them schedule a visit to a specialist (i.e. an ophthalmologist) to have a closer look? Of course.
His disclaimer? It’s nothing too serious.
My mother insisted on taking me to said specialist, where I once again had my pupils engorged to the size of my cat’s eyes right before he’s ready to pounce on something (along with a slew of other vision tests). The verdict? I was asymptomatic, but could I please visit the front desk, where they would refer me to a neurologist to have a closer look? Why not?
His disclaimer (after dropping the words MRI and spinal tap somewhere into the conversation)? It’s nothing too serious.
Had I been by myself, the appointment would have no doubt ended on that little disclaimer. However, in case you forgot, my mother had come along for the ride this time. She dove into a game of twenty questions with the doctor (as I’m sure most mothers would) and the appointment ended with him writing down my diagnosis on her little pad of paper so she could “go home and WebMD it later.” His words, not mine.
I don’t like WebMD.
Within five minutes of my appointment ending, my mother had my diagnosis linked to a dozen other illnesses and ending in the loss of my vision because there was a 0.000000000000001 chance of going blind, pulled from some study done in the African Safari on baby chimpanzees. While that might be a slight exaggeration (no baby chimpanzees were hurt during the creation of WebMD), I think you get the point. You could go on WebMD with cold symptoms and scare yourself into thinking you only had six months to live—not exactly the most fool-proof research method. So, while my mother was freaking herself out, I held onto the notion of it’s nothing too serious.
That didn’t last very long. My neurology appointment started with an MRI and ended with a spinal tap—that let me tell you, no matter what the doctors say, a spinal tap hurts like a bitch and will probably give you horrible, pounding headaches for at least a week.
My verdict? SHIT JUST GOT A LITTLE SERIOUS.
In the end, they put me on a pill that makes everything go back to normal. I’ve had a few follow-ups and the pills are working, except for the small side effect of turning all carbonated beverages flat and making them taste like I just dumped a handful of old, coppery pennies into my mouth. No more Diet Coke or beer for at least 6 months (which is conveniently thru the end of football season) and while I complain about not being able to consume carbonated beverages, everyone keeps pointing out that it’s better than going blind. Which, they have a point. So yeah, it turns out I’m going to be fine. I’ll just have to start drinking more wine.
Oh, but that nothing too serious actually cost some SERIOUS cash that health insurance doesn’t quite fully cover. My bank account has been hit pretty hard from all the lovely specialist co-pays, not to mention my recent car purchase. Add that to the MRI bill I received this week and it looks like I’ll be pinching the pennies over the next couple of months. Also, if you’re in the market, I might be putting up a few arms or legs for sale. I’ll keep you posted.
– lindsey archer