A DIVINE APPOINTMENT

u10689883I avoid it like the plague… I’ll put up with quite a bit to avoid going there, but it’s one of those things you can’t seem to avoid forever. Even the hope of a longer life doesn’t make it any easier to walk through those doors, but I did it, I gathered my guts and what little patience I have and stepped in.

I was a little early thinking I’d get in and out quicker… I always have a plan… I quickly scanned the room and the people waiting there… Rats… A pretty big crowd… and I’d be behind all of them. I signed my name and paid my co-pay with no chit chat, “Have a seat – we’ll call you,” the girl who seemed about as happy as me to be in the doctor’s office barked.

I made my way to the farthest spot from people as I could, it was the opposite corner of the dreaded door that they call the victi- I mean patients through. It also happened to be under the TV. Sure with choices come consequences, but at least I wouldn’t have to share an armrest or airspace with sick people.

The only thing worse than a quiet doctor’s office is a loud one. I had to endure the unwanted conversations from all over the room. The mothers sharing the typical stories about their kids. I checked the clock. Ten minutes past my appointment time… They must issue scripts for mothers to memorize…

Just before one of the moms left, a little girl in her terrible two’s, about five chairs down decided she wanted down. She and her dad had a complete disagreement on the arrangement, he used his might to enforce his will. Of course, the rest of us paid the price. The louder the kid got the louder the waiting room got.

There was an elderly lady mumbling very loudly to herself about the government… I probably had the same sentiments as she, but I try not to talk to myself in public… I checked my watch… Twenty minutes past my appointment time… I began to look desperately at the door every time the  nurse came to call out another poor sap’s name. I was ready.

I sat under the glaring TV with my eyes closed and my head in the palm of my hand, supported by my arm and the arm of the chair. A shaved headed man with a walker began to tell his temporary neighbor across the aisle about Saudi Arabia. It’s completely possible that the people in Arabia could hear him… I secretly wished he was back in Saudi Arabia… I checked my phone. Thirty minutes past my appointment time…

The place had emptied out of the original people replaced by new patients that had already checked in and had been called back and then released. I was thinking about tearing the TV off the wall when an older couple moved closer to the TV… Great…

He walked with a cane, had a black felt cowboy hat that matched his handlebar mustache and a big gold cross hanging around his neck, his wife looked extra kind, even smiled my direction not caring about the ripped sweatshirt and ponytail. Another tall woman with tattoos on every inch of exposed skin ambled in and sat across from them… My world was closing in… “Are you a Christian?” she asked.

I checked the time, it was forty-five minutes past my appointment time when I realized my real appointment was with the couple I’d mentally vowed to avoid… We chatted about matters of the heart and God. When they finally did get around to calling my name they both extended a hand with sincerity. “God bless you!” they said as I shook each of their hands.

I answered in a loud and proud voice, “God bless!”

“A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps…” I tend to forget that fact… Maybe that’s why I get so many reminders…