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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
into a Worthwhile
Human Being.

Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it.

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Tuesday
Nov272007

Hey, kids! It's Alice's Tips for Living!

Let’s say your doctor somehow tricks you into scheduling a physical. He asks you when the last time your physical was, and because you're me, you say, "Uh, high school?" And then he recommends that you schedule one, pronto. He doesn't think it's so funny when you say, "But I get those, what do you call them, vagina physicals! Isn't that enough?" Actually he does think that's kind of funny. You like your doctor. But he walks you to the receptionist and asks her to schedule your physical, because he knows you'll run away otherwise. Dick.

Let's jump ahead to the physical, because this post is sort of dragging, already. Okay, so during the physical you mention to Dr. Charming that you can't actually, how do you put this, hear, and he looks into your ears and explains that the reason you can't hear is because you've apparently melted several candles and pumped their molten remains into your canals. In other words, there's a lot of wax. Now your readers are grossed out that they know this about you, but then, you've already discussed your peeing problems in great detail, so what the hell.

So your doctor begins to root around inside your ears--way deep inside, probably into the brainpan--with an instrument. From the way it feels, you're guessing it's an ice pick or a crowbar. And then he says something like "whoops."

"Whoops?" you say.

"The skin sort of pulled a little bit, and there's some oozing," says the doctor. "Let me just clean that up for you."

By "oozing," he means "crazy bleeding," which you can see very clearly from the numerous cotton swabs inserted into your ear and then removed when they've become saturated. Your doctor seems mildly horrified. There are many q-tips. He is apologizing. A lot. You're too busy worrying about that tetanus shot he mentioned to care very much. You fool!

After the shots (ow) and the various other ridiculous procedures you're put through, the doctor mentions that he's going to prescribe an antibiotic for your ear. "It's probably not necessary, but do it anyway," he says. "And don't try to clean out your ears, or, you know, go in there with anything. You really don't want that to get infected."

So now that all this has occurred--TO YOU--here are my handy tips!

DO NOT: wonder, the next day, if there's a big ol' scab inside your ear.

DO NOT: decide it's okay to get in there and find out. That is both disgusting and unclean.

DO: Get that prescription filled.

DO NOT: think that a little throbbing and itching is probably just "healing."

DO NOT: wait for the pain to escalate out of control before fishing the wadded-up prescription out of the bottom of your purse.

DO: thank your husband for running out to the 24-hour pharmacy for you as you claw at your ear, weeping.

I hope that I have helped you, in some small way.

Reader Comments (42)

Oh ow! I've known a couple of people with the whole wax build-up thing. I went to my Dr to get it check out myself, as it turns out though, it's just selective hearing on my part.

I hope your ear gets better.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered Commentersaucygrrl
Note to self: NO drinking and finslippying at the same time.Alice: Between your ear and George and the cat I have spent far too much time wiping off my monitor this week. I hope you are feeling better today but seriously -- I love all the posting you have been doing this month. You are truly the funniest blogger on the Internet. I heart you.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAEMom
That does not sound fun, but is your doctor hot?
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterStrizz
I am convinced that I have huge hunks of wax in my ears, but I have not been motivated to try to do anything about it. If I were braver, I'd try candling or ear cones or whatever you call it. Ear infections are no frickin fun, I know that. Hope yours mend up soon.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMarie
"Ooops"??? - definitely something you don't want to hear from your doctor.

My daughter has same thing - and we do ear drops each night. Get them OTC. Seems to be helping. No more pokey thing at the doctor.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJuju
So the whole plugged up ear thing used to happen to me regularly. You can actually buy drops (Murine) at the drug store that sort of foam a little when you put them in your ears. You just put a few drops in, let them sit for a few hours, and then take one of those baby snot clearing bubble syringes and flush out your ear over the sink. It's totally gross what comes out, but no bleeding and/or pain are involved. MUCH less traumatic.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAmy B
brainpan. good one.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered Commentershannon
Ouch, wow, yikes! I'm cringing in a corner...
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAmy
Brainpan?

That, unaccountably, keeps making me giggle.
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterLisa O
The things you do to entertain us! Mercy!
November 28, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterGinny
damn, you know how to tell a story.
November 29, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterIsabel Kallman
I once heard a funny comment from the radio doctor, Dr. Dean Edel. He said that in medical school they taught students to never say "oops" should they mess up. Instead utter a soothing and slightly satisfied, "There!"
November 29, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRobin in San Jose
Try ear candling, its the weirdest thing ever but it totally works and involves no poking or bleeding. The amount of wax that comes out is ridiculously gross and amazing. Its completely painless. Some spas offer it as a service now if you're not comfortable lighting that thing sticking out of your ear on fire yourself.
December 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMonica
You can also make him send you to the specialist ear doctor who uses either a whooshy water thing or a suction doohicky (yes, the technical terms) and reduces the liklihood of peeling away parts of the inside of your ear. It's still gross, though, but you probably already figured that out.
December 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterKizz
Hearing=Good!Bleeding=BAD!Opps!=Really BAD!Laughing=Bad!no, Good!Sorry!
December 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterEllen
Jeez, Alice. The lengths you go to for blog fodder during November. It's sick, really. And blaming it all on your nice, sweet, non-malpracticing doctor, well that's just plain mean. And unnecessary.
December 4, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJulie
At least your doctor cares. When I went for my annual physical last year, he asked me why I keep coming. Because, you know, that annual OB/GYN physical is sufficient. And I only need to come back every 2-3 years until I reach 50. It made me feel like a moron, because I thought the OB/GYN was really not interested in the big picture. But, lazy me, I still haven't found another internist. You know, one who actually values my coming in.
December 6, 2007 | Unregistered Commentermidlife mommy

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