“Dr. Braine,” said Nurse Nancy Nervosa, “I hate to tell you this on a Monday morning but your favorite patient is coming as a walk-in, she says it cannot wait.”
“Ugh,” was his reply; his entire torso sunk downward. “What is it now?”
“She says that she has been trying to diet for two weeks and that she really does want to diet but she has no self control and she is frustrated,” replied Nurse Nancy.
“Okay.” “So what time does the bomb go off?”
“Oh, about 9:15, I told her she would be a work-in but you know what her thoughts are: “I won’t take long,” “that is what she always says.”
Dr. Braine looked at his watch and trying to find a bright side to the situation the only thing he could think to say was, “Well, today is ruined, but maybe we will have control of tomorrow.”
Willis Braine, MD and Nancy Nervosa, RN are the two person medical team of Braine Psychiatry, a small but successful Psychiatric facility in the beautiful Village of Itsme.
The Village is unique because of the thoughtfulness of the town designers who arranged everything for the total convenience of its residents. The Itsme Mall is a large circle in shape and all the shoppers can park their cars close to the store in which they wish to shop; inside the mall there is a continuously circling trolley that takes the shopper to any store in the Mall, simply step off and step in.
Effortless shopping they call it; and truly getting into the stores is effortless. Everyone can feel the priority due them. After all, it is the Itsme Mall with a reputation for selling the most delicious of chocolate delicacies, and every other elegant food anyone could want.
Watching the door, and the patients who had arrived on time for their appointments, Nancy Nurse knew the big boom was eminent. The door to the Waiting Room opened with a bang. “Who but Prudence could get a door to bang upon opening?”
All eyes appropriately fixed upon Prudence, (Prudence scanned the room to be certain,) she waddled over to the Reception Desk and with proper profuse thanks she loudly thanked Nurse Nancy for taking her ahead of the other patients. Nurse Nancy quickly took her to the Exam Room promising her that the Doctor would see her soon.
When Dr. Braine entered the room he said his usual hello and asked the same question Doctors always ask, “How may I help you today?”
Prudence began to talk as if her rotund body was full of air and the words were being forcibly blown out, it was non-stop.
Dr. Braine listened, as Psychiatrists’ always do; he asked the same question Psychiatrists always ask; not once but again and again, “And what do you think?”
After being in session with Prudence by far longer than he should have been, an idea popped into his head.
“Prudence,” he said, “You have told me that you want to lose weight and I believe you. It is necessary for you to do that, not only for your health but for your own self esteem.”
He walked about the room, then looking squarely into her eyes he said, “Prudence, I cannot do that for you. I cannot give you a pill that will give you self-restraint. No one can do for you what it takes to lose weight, no one except Prudence herself.” Prudence sniffled and blew her nose.
For the first time since Prudence became his patient, he felt sympathy and compassion for her, but then he had never heard her be so bluntly truthful.
Dr. Braine continued, “You have told me how you eat multiple chocolate bars and bags of potato chips, and ice cream, all the junk food that you consume you get to wear and show it off to everyone. Your overindulgence is not hidden.
“Prudence” he said, “Your mother named you a name that you need to live up to; your name means careful management, discretion, foresight and forethought.”
Prudence looked pensive, she had never thought of herself in those terms and certainly no one else she knew had ever said those words about her.
Dr. Braine suggested to Prudence that she pause before eating anything and that she honestly evaluate it as healthy food or junk food; if she evaluated it as “Junk Food,” that she would say to herself. “Junk Food is Skunk Food, and I won’t wear it!”
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