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An appointment with the doctor
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Judi Tabler

I had an appointment with my doctor today. It was a yearly sort of “touch bases” kind of appointment. 

My temperature was taken at the door, and once inside at the appointment desk, the receptionist asked me to fill out a new 2021 sheet of questions, as I mumbled through my mask ... You know the drill.

“Annie?” I followed the nurse. Uh oh. There it is! The “Monster.” The scale stands just down the hall, empty and waiting for me. I stared it down, and began to disrobe. I removed my coat, stepped out of my shoes; I wanted to take everything else off, but I know they didn’t have time to wait while I unbuttoned my shirt. I stepped up onto the dang thing. It lies. Just want you to know that.

Chatting with me, the nurse walked with me to the exam room. Once settled in the comfort of my hard-seated, 4-legged plastic chair, the nurse began to ask the questions. Here they are: 

Are you still taking this, and this and this? “Yes.” What else? Do you take a baby aspirin every day? “No. Uh, sometimes.” Why are you here today? I grabbed my notes and ran through the list. Then she thanked me and left the room, closed the door. 

It’s the same room we have all experienced: four walls, two chairs, a treatment table, a cabinet for swabs, paper products, and a computer for information. While sitting there, I was tempted to look in the cabinet drawers, merely because I wanted something to do. I still think that the nursing staff should serve coffee, or cocoa, and cookies, or maybe carrots to patients who are waiting in that room. Wouldn’t that be just delightful?

The doctor stepped in. 

I mentioned that an inversion table might be a good option for back problems. An inversion is when you hang upside down or are placed in an upside-down position. It relieves back pain and decompresses the spine. I hope there are foot grips and handles so when the table flips your head below your tail, you don’t do a backwards somersault.

The doc agreed this table might be a good idea. We proceeded to bounce this option around in our conversation. I remarked, “However, if I get one of these tables, I will be obligated to one more chore every day to add to the other rituals; flossing teeth, taking vitamins, drinking 8 glasses of water, doing stretches, etc. 

Doc had a great idea. 

He said, “Why not do the inversion table, and while you are lying at the tipped angle, floss your teeth while you are hanging there. And maybe, (with a twinkle in his eye) you can drink your water and take your vitamins then.” 

I like that idea. I think it could work. But I don’t think water would go down. It would be going up. “I would choke,” I replied. “Right. That might not work,” he agreed. He also explained to me why this and why that. I am still thinking about the inversion table and flossing my teeth at the same time.

It might just work.

Shooing myself out the door with a friendly good-bye, I headed for the exit. Have you ever seen cattle when they are released from their frame after receiving their inoculations? I mean, those cows are anxious to get back to the herd. And of course, so was I.  

Judi Tabler lives in Pawnee County and is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune. She can be reached at