Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The One Where I Go Semi-Postal

One of my New Year's resolutions this year was to just go with the flow. I don't tend to fly off the handle all that easily anyway, but I decided that nothing good ever comes out of getting angry and upset, so I was going to avoid going there if at all possible. That's not to say that I don't get bugged about things and voice my opinion, especially to Hubby, but I really meant this in situations where I was dealing with people out in public. I decided that I needed to be a good Christian example. I vowed to try and give people the benefit of the doubt and be nice in all situations. And, I'm pleased to say that I have been able to do just that. Until today. I admit that today I couldn't do it and I am actually quite proud of myself for not going even more postal. Here's what happened:

I went to the dentist last Tuesday. I have this strange bump below one of my teeth. That tooth also has a crown on it. It doesn't bother me at all. There is no pain or discomfort. My dentist x-rayed the tooth and decided that I should be referred to a specialist for a possible root canal. This story just affirms that NOTHING good can come out of a root canal.

When I was leaving the dentists office they gave me paperwork with all of the information about where I was going and the phone number so that I could call to schedule the appointment. They also told me that when I knew the date and time of my appointment I needed to call them back so that they could send over the referral. I. did. all .of. that. I called and told them that my appointment was this morning at 9:45. The girl that I spoke to told me that the referrals are good for 48 hours and she would send the referral to the specialist on Monday so that it would be good today.

When I arrived at the new dentist's office this morning the receptionist informed me that they hadn't received the referral yet. She said she had called my dentist and they told her they were short handed and they couldn't send it until tomorrow. Could I come back then? I explained to her that I lived 45 minutes away and that that would be very inconvenient. She understood and explained to me my options:

1. Do just a consult today and not start the work. (Just means 3 appointments instead of 2)

2. Start the work on the assumption that my dentist would send over the referral with today's date on it and pay a $130.00 co-pay. (We all know what happens when one assumes, right?)

3. Start the work and IF my, already lame, dentist didn't get the referral sent over battle with my insurance carrier because of the date issue and have to possibly pay full price of $1000.00. (OK, not picking that option.)

4. Drive back tomorrow and start all over. ( Grrrr........)

At this point, I told her that I was going to step outside, call my husband and my lame dentists office and make a decision. I should probably say that the receptionist was great and very helpful given the fact that my dentist had tied her hands behind her back.

I called Hubby and we both agreed that option #3 was.not.happening. Next I called my dentist. I spoke to Nellie(name has been changed to protect the not so innocent. Also, this person reminded me of Nellie Olson from Little House on the Prairie. You know, just not such a nice person.) and asked what we needed to do to get the referral faxed over to the new, super nice dentist's office. Here is our conversation:

Nellie: Like I told them, we are short handed and it isn't going to happen today. The first I knew about your appointment was this morning when they called looking for a last minute referral.

Me: Your office did know about this appointment because I called last week and told so-and-so when the appointment was. She told me that the referral was good for 48 hours so she would send it over on Monday.

Nellie: Stop Talking!

This is where I threw my New Year's resolution out the window. Game On! Let's do this! Now I'm mad and not responsible for anything else that may come out of my mouth.

Nellie continues: I already told you that we are short handed. Do you honestly expect me to pull someone off of patient care to take care of faxing your referral?

Me: That is exactly what I expect you to do. My butt might not be in one of your chairs, but I am a patient and I absolutely expect that referral to be faxed over here within the next 15 minutes. I did everything that your office told me to do and I expected to be able to show up at this appointment and actually have had YOU do your job.

Nellie: I can't promise you anything, but I'll see if I can get it faxed over late today.

I'm not sure how we ended the conversation. I know I had to actually take some deep breaths when I got off of the phone because I was sooooo angry.

I went back into the new, super nice dentist's office and told the receptionist that I had tried, but didn't really get anywhere. We again discussed my options and I decided that it would be best to just do the consult today and not put myself in the position of incurring any unnecessary costs or battles. She left the room and returned a few moments later laughing. She said that she didn't know what I did, but that the referral had just come across the fax. Hmmmmmm.....couldn't have been too short handed.

Then I was taken back to the exam room faced with the prospect of having a root canal started today. The dentist came in, examined me, took more x-rays, ran some tests on my tooth and declared, " I want to see you in 6 weeks. I'm not convinced that you even need a root canal. Let's just watch it and see if it bothers you."

Really, all of that for nothing, but seriously. I'm writing a letter to my dentist to 'tell on Nellie.' I am prepared to change dentists if I don't get some form of an apology or satisfaction. I'm also irritated with Nellie because she is the one who is responsible for my only making it 6 months into my resolution. And, as I'm typing this, I clearly hear God letting me know that no, that's not the case, I am responsible for losing it. Yah, whatever.


Heather said...

I love you!!! And just because you are a Christian does not mean that people have the right to treat you with disrespect. I think that you are awesome and you did what I would do...only probably a little nicer..!

Dena said...

Nellie stinks!

Anonymous said...

One thing I like about being older is that I don't let rude, lazy sales/dental people get away with their stuff! It's as if they are doing me a HUGE favor to be polite, talk to me while in their line at the store, etc. What the heck happened to manners???
You go girl!