When we go to the doctor’s we receive information on patient rights and rights of privacy. I’m considering a new campaign: the right to a proper gown.
Who invented those blue, tissue paper gowns anyway? You know, the ones with the thin plastic belt that wouldn’t fit around the waist of a Barbie doll?
Last week I went to see the doctor. It was warm in the waiting room, so I slipped off the shirt I wore over a sleeveless top. Nobody else seemed warm, but I was. I do that a lot these days…warm, peel off a layer; cool, add a layer. I’m 50. It’s my new form of exercise.
The problem was I’d been sneezing that morning because of allergies. How should I say this? Well, I am not what you would call a delicate sneezer. In an effort to protect his ears, my husband turns off his hearing aids when I sneeze.
Recently when the East coast had an earthquake, my family thought “Leslie just sneezed.” I don’t try to, but I shake the walls and foundations.
On a good day, a warm, stuffy waiting room makes me sneeze. So there I was on a bad day in the doctor’s warm, stuffy waiting room. My sneezing increased. Lovely.
I looked lovely too.
I was at the dermatologist for an annual skin check, so there was no makeup or foundation to hide the red histamine splotches around my mouth. No blush to give color to my pale face. No lipstick to distract from my red, watering eyes.
In the exam room, the air conditioning was on full blast. As I undressed and slipped on a lovely tissue paper gown, some snowflakes drifted by.
Dressed in tissue paper, I sat on the exam table and waited. I tried to pass the time by reading a magazine. Except I sneezed which made the magazine fall off my lap.
I bent down to pick up the magazine, sneezed, and the tissue paper gown ripped down the back. Then, as I finally reached for the magazine, the tissue paper gown ripped under the arm.
I felt like a mess.
Trying to convince myself otherwise, I casually crossed my legs and continued to read. Except I didn’t have enough hands. I needed one to hold the magazine, one to hold a tissue to my nose, and one to keep the shreds of paper from blowing off my cold, shivering body.
It was then I got the giggles over my pathetic state. I sat there, all by myself and laughed out loud.
That’s how the doctor found me: a shivering, sneezing, splotchy faced, red eyed woman, laughing hysterically all by herself, trying to cover her naked body with the remaining shreds of a tissue paper gown.
There are moments in life when our humanness reminds us of how weak and fragile we really are. Usually they are times of tears. This was a time of laughter.
But always these times are to remind us of our human condition. We like to think we have it all together. We don’t. Thankfully, our Lord knows us, weaknesses and all, and He loves each of us more than we can imagine.
Today, I pray, you are able to smile and laugh, simply because He loves you. (Do you have a human moment you dare to share? :0)
“For you created my inmost being,
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am
fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”