This happened more than two years ago. But it’s still pretty clear in my head.
June 2009. It was the time when I was constantly having serious digestion problems. Sometimes, my digestive system would not do its job dissolving food while other times, it would just overdo it. I finally had enough so I decided to see a doctor.
Together with my hubby Shy Guy, I went to a hospital near my office. (Clue: it’s somewhere in Mandaluyong.) We approached the reception desk and said what we were there for. The woman at the desk then told us to proceed to a clinic upstairs. We fell in line and waited a full hour for our turn. We then filled out some forms coz it was my first time at that hospital. Everything was going well until the actual consultation.
Shy Guy chose to just wait for me outside while the doctor and I talked. Inside the room, the doctor asked me to describe what I had been feeling and how long it had been going on. I did and he explained to me what could have been happening in my body. He said I probably had “Irritable Bowel Syndrome.” It was a funny name for a disease, I thought. (It’s a real disorder, though.) He added that it could have been caused by my diet and too much stress. It actually made sense because back then, I usually felt like hitting the restroom whenever I was stressed out.
After giving me a prescription, the doctor then asked about my lifestyle. I answered, “well, I sleep at around 1am and wake up at 7.”
Doctor: Mahilig ka bang uminom?
Yoshke: Years ago but not recently. It’s under control.
Doctor: How much do you drink and how frequent?
Yoshke: Hmmm. I only drink, like, once a month. 5-8 bottles of beer? And some cocktails?
Doctor: Naninigarilyo ka?
Doctor: How many packs a day?
Yoshke: 4-10 STICKS a day.
Doctor: You know what, cigarettes are instruments of THE DEVIL!!!
And then he lost it.
Doctor: Satan lures people with these vices! Ang sigarilyo at alak ay mga gamit ng mga demonyo!!! Kailangan natin alisin sa katawan natin si Satanas! Alisin natin. Tigilan mo yang pag-inom-inom at paninigarilyo para hindi ka mapasakamay ng demonyo at masunog sa impyerno.
What the…. The doctor continued…
Doctor: Naniniwala ka ba sa impyerno?
Yoshke: Hindi po.
Doctor: MANIWALA KAAA!!! Kung hindi mo tigilan yan, dun ka pupunta. Yang mga sakit na yan ay dala sa atin ng demonyo dahil ginagamit natin ang kanilang mga instrumento! TIGILAN MO NA ANG PANINIGARILYO! Pati ang pagpupuyat mo, iwasan mo yan. Ang katawan ang tahanan ng kaluluwa! Hwag nating sirain ang tahanan ng ating kaluluwa gamit ang mga instrumento ni Satanas.
Yoshke: Doc, smoker lang ako, hindi ako Satanista. (smiles)
Doctor: Yun din yun! Iwasan natin ang mga yan! Yan ang sisira sa ating katawan at kaluluwa.
Yoshke: Ah okay, doc. San po pala yung pharmacy dito? Dito na lang ako bili ng gamot.
Doctor: Sa Ground Floor. Teka, bago ka umalis, basahin mo ‘to.
I thought he would give me a brochure on Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Instead, he whipped out the Bible and asked me to read some verses.
Yoshke: For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life…
Doctor: Kita mo? Jesus Christ died for us. And now you’re ruining your body. That’s why you get diseases! COZ YOU’RE A SINNER!!!
He, then, asked me to read another verse. And then another. And then another.
Doctor: Kita mo? Tayo ang nagdadala ng sakit sa ating katawan. We should not live a sinful life so we would not have diseases that damage the soul and the body. May kasama ka ba?
Yoshke: Ay meron po, yung kaibigan ko po.
Doctor: Pwede mo bang tawagin?
I was trying hard, so hard not to laugh my guts out when I invited Shy Guy in.
Doctor (to Shy Guy): I was telling your friend here na dapat natin alagaan ang ating katawan. OK, let’s bow our heads and put our hands over his head and pray for the betterment of his body and soul.
And so we prayed. At least they did. I am agnostic.
When we were finally out of the clinic, I almost died laughing.
Shy Guy: Bakit? Ano sabi ng doktor?
Yoshke: Kampon daw ako ni Satanas, ginagamit daw ako ng demonyo at mapupunta daw ako sa impyerno! Bwahaha.
Shy Guy (worried): Huh? Ano daw sakit mo?
Yoshke: Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
But you know what, something else made me irritable that day and it had nothing to do with my shit.