Thursday, September 20, 2012

How New Health Care Questions Make My Writer's Brain Work

I have been experiencing trouble with extremely dry eyes. My eye doctor--a wonderful woman and great doctor--has been working hard to help me overcome this irritating issue. Consequently, I have to go see her about every 2-4 weeks as we try to restore the eyeballs to normal health. Between the last visit and my most recent one, there have been new questions put into place as a result of changes in how the government runs our health care system.

Cool beans, says I when the assistant tells me about the new questions. Fire away, I say, thinking that the questions will run the usual gamut of how much I weigh (don't ask, don't tell is my usual motto), how tall I am, whether or not I drink (socially, but then every day is social at my house--want to join the party?) have I ever smoked and so forth.

So here come the questions. Most are what I expected. I fudged on the weight (I seriously have no idea right now) and I always say I'm a social drinker--what social means to one person is quite different than what it means to another. On good days--Pilates days--I am 5'7". On bad days, I might shrink a half inch. Whatever. Apparently, fudging on the weight and giving myself a Pilates' height puts me in the proper Body Mass Index of GREEN. Yay me!!

All is well until the following questions come up:

1) Where are you in the birth order? First I answer.
2) Do you have siblings? Uh, yah.
3) Do you have a twin? Not that I know of--but hey stranger things have happened.
4) Are you an only child? Uh, see number 1 & 2
5) How many siblings do you have? Just one the last time I checked.

OK, I have no idea why the government needs to know if I have a twin, but naturally, being a writer, these questions made me think about a lot of "what if" scenarios. For instance, what if you're adopted and you have a twin and you don't know it? Or what if you're adopted and you don't know you're adopted and you're mother is actually your older sister? Or what if you're adopted and you're an only child in that family, but your biological family is filled with dozens of siblings and you would have been THE BABY of the family? What if you were kidnapped as a baby and you had siblings but you're raised as an only child by the kidnappers? What if you always wondered if you had a twin sister/brother and these health care questions awaken an innate "knowing" within you that has you searching for the truth?

And there's more.

What if you are a foster child/a person who grew up in the foster care system. How do you know what the truth is about your family of origin? Or what if you were abandoned at birth and raised by nuns? Or what if you're actually the crown princess of an obscure principality in Europe and the government has been seeking you and this is all a ruse? Or what if the government has decided to create a huge database of people who are twins so they can run experiments on them without their consent or knowledge because an Alien Nation has overtaken our world?

Do you see where I am going with this line of reasoning? I'd love to know what kind of scenarios you come up with regarding these new questions. Oh, and if you're my twin, please contact me off loop.


1 comment:

Joan Leacott said...

Writers find inspirations in the oddest places, eh? Is that your princess you're talking about? This gets me going all secret half-siblings ideas. What if your father had families all over the country? What if your mother gave up a child for adoption before she married your father? This goes with the news article I was reading about the children from a sperm donor connecting with each other; twenty-seven and counting at the time the article was printed. Fodder Alert!