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Rated: ASR · Short Story · Other · #1893542
Phoenix's doctor did not call yesterday like he needed him to...and he wonders why.
Phoenix left his psychiatrist a letter early yesterday morning.  He explained in the letter that he was really in trouble mentally and that he would like to check in with his doctor by phone if possible.  Phoenix had handed the letter to one of the new front desk staff to give to his doctor.  He did not even know her name and was worried that it might not get to his doctor like it needed to.  Phoenix waited all day for a phone call from his doctor.  Phoenix had a supervisory meeting for his thesis that evening and warned his supervisor that he might need to take a call if it came because it would likely be his doctor.  Phoenix waited and waited, more nervous by the minute.  The entire supervisory meeting passed and still no word from his doctor.  It was 1900 hrs.  No call.

Phoenix wondered why.  He always thought the worst.  For example, his first thought was that he was not important enough for his doctor to call and check on.  His next thought was that his doctor was too busy to call him.  The third though that Phoenix had was that his doctor was mad at him or felt bothered by him and was irritated.  Finally, Phoenix came to the conclusion that perhaps the letter had not even reached his doctor, considering the front desk staff that he had handed it to.  They were new.  They may not know that when Phoenix brought a letter in for his doctor that it was important.  How could they not, though?  Because they were new and very possible naive about how things worked with Phoenix.  If Phoenix brought a letter in, that meant that it needed to get to his doctor as soon as possible because Phoenix was in trouble and he knew it.  Normally, Phoenix would have called his doctor's secretary, too, but he had not yesterday.  The whole thing could have been Phoenix's fault.  That did not help the situation.  At least it took the pressure off of his doctor.  His doctor worked hard and was very concerned about Phoenix, and Phoenix knew that.  He felt guilty for having such previous thoughts about his doctor because there were times when his doctor had checked up on him just because he was worried.  His doctor cared for him.

Phoenix could not understand why he had such pessimistic and negative thoughts about everything right away and only later, after he had all of those out of his system, did he think logically and rationally about the situation.  Why was he such a wreck when it came to dealing with the unknowns?  Why could the positive thoughts not come first?  Phoenix could do without the negative thoughts entirely.  It was his thinking.  Phoenix needed to change the way he thought about things.  He needed to change the way he thought about everything, as a matter of fact.  PTSD and Depression did not help his thought processes any.  The rage he felt inside all the time and the depressive thoughts that followed in pure exhaustion from his anger left Phoenix in a bind for negative thinking.  Phoenix never found peace or relief.  He always had a driving anger - a rage - inside him, inside his chest.  He was a lit fuse and the tiniest thing could ruin his day.  Even if the majority of the day was great, one little thing could stick and cause Phoenix to ruminate on the bad thing, even if it was minor, and forget all the good things in his day.  Phoenix tried to pray when he remembered.  He was not certain that he should be praying to God with all of the things he did in the War, but he prayed anyway, thanking God for the good things in his life, like his doctor.  He praised God when something went well, like a presentation, too.

Prayer.  That was a whole subject all its own.  Phoenix prayed to lose weight.  He prayed not to lose his doctor.  He prayed not to lose his spouse.  He prayed for forgiveness.  He prayed for the words and the ways to deal with people, since he obviously did not have them (or he did not think that he did).  Phoenix was ashamed of his weight.  222 lb. at 5' 3".  He was a warrior.  Warriors were not fat.  Of course, his doctor said they do not use the word "fat".  Phoenix responded that they used the word "obese".  His BMI was 40.  That was heavy enough to have stomach stapling done at a weight clinic.  Phoenix had to take the medicine.  He was thankful for the medicine, another thing he prayed to God about.  He knew, however, that that was part of his weight problem.  So were his mental disorders.  Phoenix was not afraid to work in the field, nor was he afraid to play racquetball at the gym, but he always hurt so bad afterwards.  His hips, knees, and injured ankle would barely take a workout every other day.  A workout every day was a bad idea pain-wise for Phoenix.  He prayed that he would lose the weight, but did not truly believe he could without surgery.

In short, Phoenix's letter to his doctor included the spiritual issues of associating the Bible with combat and the sexual abuse he had suffered as a child, and he associated church with the sexual abuse as well.  He also included that he had the rage within him, but had been taking an unspecified amount of antipsychotic and was no longer hearing voices.  He also told his doctor that he had called his case manager on Friday because his doctor was not working and Phoenix needed help.  Phoenix said that he still needed help.  Convinced that his doctor was either too busy to call or did not receive the letter, Phoenix calmed down.  It was okay.  It was what it was.  Life did not end and the world did not stop revolving (and the world did not revolve around Phoenix).  Phoenix was still in rough shape, but would make it to his appointment this week with his doctor.  One more day.  That was all he had to make it through.  One more day...
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