Wednesday, March 26, 2008

03 Pharmacy Meltdown

It’s a Monday. We’ve had a fairly good day and it is time to visit the doctor since Ada is still suffering from a cold and it’s been over a week so the doctor wants to see her. Our appointment is at three, we have friends coming over at 6:15, and we want to pick daddy up from work after running errands at Target to get supplies for day care. To the doctor’s office we go, but not before prepping the diaper bag, packing the baby in the car seat, and dragging everything to the car via the front door, inner vestibule door, down four stairs, out the outer vestibule door and into the car. We skipped the stroller this time knowing we would have the cart and wouldn’t be going far from the car.

Travel to the doctor’s office is uneventful. Once we arrive, Ada is a bit fussy. She drinks from her bottle a bit as I struggle to show the receptionist my ID and insurance card which is the same as it was last week when I was here but they have to check every time “Just to be sure.” After waiting for ten minutes they finally call her name over her screams of discomfort. We’re lead back to the examination room and I’m asked to undress her. The nurse weighs her says the doctor will be right in. We hang out and I feed her the rest of her bottle. She pees, I change her. The doctor comes in and examines her. That’s a tough job when Ada screams while the doctor tries to get a good listen to her chest. Finally the doctor decides to give her a prescription for Albuterol to help open her lungs a bit since she has some phlegm making it tough to breathe while she’s eating. We’re good to go.

Suddenly I remember the paperwork I dropped off on Friday and ask the doctor if it is completed and in her file or what the status is so I can submit it to her day care. “what form would that be?” asks the doctor. “The one recording all of her immunizations that I dropped off on Friday and called you about.” “Oh, let me check.”, she replies. Ten minutes later she returns to say they found it and she starts filling it out. She needs to get more information and says she’ll be right back. Ada is doing well and we’re playing. Ten minutes later the doctor returns and says she’ll make a copy of the immunization information and we’ll be ready to go. She’ll be right back. Ten more minutes pass, Ada starts screaming because she’s dirty, and I change her. Ten more minutes pass and finally a nurse comes in to say, “You’re just waiting on this form right?” “Yes.” “The copy machine back here isn’t working for some reason so I’ll take this up to the front desk to copy it and meet you there.” “Great.” The bundling begins. I settle Ada down, pack her into her car seat, repack the diaper bag, put on my coat, gather everything up and head to the cashier to pay my co-pay. The nurse meets me and hands me the paperwork that she finally photocopied as I glance at my phone. It is 4:30. Holy crap. I only have half an hour before I’m supposed to pick Rick up from work and we still have to go to Target and get Ada’s prescription filled before company arrives at our house at 6:15. I call Rick. He encourages me to head to Target and if he doesn’t hear from me by 5:25 he’ll take the bus home and let our friends into our house.

Ada and I head to Target. And she cries most of the way there. I park and load her car seat into a nearby stroller. With my list and coupons in hand, we hustle toward the pharmacy. We grab a few things on the way and Ada’s level of fussiness starts to increase. As we reach the pharmacy counter, Ada has hit full blown meltdown. Nothing is working. She’s screaming bloody murder as I’m trying to give the prescription to the pharmacist and explain that she has never had a prescription filled there before. The pharmacist fills out the necessary paperwork for me since my hands are full with a screaming child that is inconsolable at this point, and asks me to come back in twenty minutes. With Ada bouncing in my arms, I head for the Kleenex aisle and then to the elevator as we’re off to the baby section. We grab a few things for daycare and are lucky to get the last box of Target brand un-scented bulk baby wipes. Back to the elevator, we return to the pharmacy. The meltdown returns. As I struggle to unload my cart with my free hand, the pharmacist is ringing up my purchases and trying to explain how I’m supposed to give Ada her new inhaler with the fancy contraption it attaches to as my phone is ringing. I fumble for the phone as I dig out my coupons and pass the crumpled wad to the cashier while subsequently putting my credit card into the reader and trying to unsuccessfully wedge Ada back into her car seat. I ignore the call as it happens to be my friend, neighbor and regular pharmacist Kelly, whom I’m sure knows that I am cheating on her with this Target pharmacist and will therefore think I’m a bad friend/neighbor/customer. Ada’s meltdown continues as I am momentarily shocked by the $180 price tag of my quick target run, but I’m too busy to care as she is still screaming, the guilt for cheating on my pharmacist is mounting, and I’m trying to figure out if I’ll make it home in time to great our dinner guests. The wonderful pharmacist, her name was Beth, kindly steps around the counter to help load all of my purchases into my cart and send Ada and I on our way.

We exit the Target and arrive at the car. I load everything into the car and Ada is still crying. It’s 5:15 and I need to catch Rick before he gets on the bus so I can pick him up from work. As I start the car, I check my voicemail and learn that my friend/neighbor/pharmacist Kelly needs to borrow black pants for her trip to New York tomorrow. I try to return her call but get voicemail and leave a message saying she can have whatever she wants and can stop by anytime. I try to call Rick and get his voicemail. As I try again, he is calling me and I go to click swap call/answer and hit Ignore instead and lose his call and my connection to his voicemail. At this point, Ada is screaming, I’m trying to drive in downtown Chicago, and I can’t get Rick’s stupid phone to connect. I’m screaming at Ada who’s screaming at the world, when finally I connect with Rick and put him on speakerphone as I finish my tirade of insults I’m spewing at traffic at the light in front of me. Rick, unbeknownst to me, has been fighting a cold and has just ridden down the elevator from the 35th floor while his sinuses are draining to innocently answer the phone as I’m screaming into his ear that has yet to pop from the pressure in the elevator, resulting in a shape pain that makes him wince. Poor guy. He quips back that I need to calm down and I explain that I’ll meet him in five minutes at his building. Whew.

In route to Rick’s office, Ada is screaming, I get stuck at every red light and behind every loading and unloading cab to be had, and the five minute drive seems like 25 minutes. I arrive and pull up to the curb for Rick to get into the backseat of our blue Honda Civic and what do I hear but… oh yes… silence. Daddy’s here and all is well in the world as Ada passes out and doesn’t utter a peep the rest of the way home.

Morals of the story: Pharmacists are some of the best people on earth, patience is a virtue when visiting the doctor, and don’t take a partially sick child with you anywhere.

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