December, at least for me, is the worst month in my practice. The schedule is usually half-empty as people try to postpone things to after the holidays ("maybe my right arm will start working before the new year"). Patients have a million things come up at the last minute and can't come in. Most irritatingly, my epilepsy patients always get so damn busy that they forget to take their pills, and then have a seizure, and then get angry at me because they can't drive for a month and go Christmas shopping. Like it's MY fault!
But the biggest office issue this time of year is food. The holidays offer a perfect storm.
Like many medical practices, my staff and I depend on drug reps to help supply our nutritive needs. We average 2-3 drug company lunches (occasionally breakfasts) per week, and with the leftovers get 5 days out of it. Sometimes even enough to take home.
But in December, that starts to vanish. Many reps take vacations, or have mandatory time-off. A lot of them find they've gone over-budget for the year, and so to balance it out they cut lunches in December. So we're left with the prospect (gasp!) of foraging for ourselves!
The converging issue that makes this worse is what does come to the office. Every MRI place, lab, physical therapist, pharmacist, and grateful patient sends us trays of stuff. And not healthy stuff, either. Cookies, cakes, pastries, candies, cupcakes, donuts, chocolate covered anything, and other stuff. By the boatload.
So we eat this shit instead. And with fewer patients, we have more time to hang out in the back and chat and eat. And since we are all trying to save money for holiday gifts, we don't want to go get something healthy (like at McD's or Taco Bell).
(There are other options- a diabetes specialist down the hall from me puts all the sweets out in his lobby for the patients. Really.)
So our lunches become a selection of cookies, a few chocolates, and maybe a piece of pie (hey! it's apple pie! Isn't that healthy?).
And it's in this condition that I have to face my evil arch-enemy, the Wii Fit Trainer, who just delights in telling me how much my weight has gone up.
Fortunately I have the new Wii Fit Plus. And so far I've been killed repeatedly by giant wrecking balls on the obstacle course. It's so depressing I'm going to go have a cookie.