I decided to be nice and to call the Drama Queen (aka the woman who gave birth to me) this morning around 6:30 a.m. to see hear her reaction to the earthquake. (The cats and I are just fine. Natasha ran around like crazy and then looked at me as if to say, "You crazy fool. Why aren't you running for your life. Boris hid out somewhere.) Big mistake. What I thought would be a five to ten minute phone call turned into a half hour call. There was a great deal of discussion on the topic that Drama Queen was not feeling well. I told her to call her health care provider.
About an hour or so later she called back for something else. She was still complaining about not feeling well. I once more repeated the phone number for her health care provider and told her to call them. The last time I checked, I am not a doctor. I'm not even a nurse.
Around 9:45 a.m. the drama queen called once more to say that she had called the HMO. They wouldn't give her an appointment because they wanted her to come to the emergency room. Huh? During the previous phone conversations, I had figured that in the worse case she had bronchitis. It seems that she chose to tell the advice nurse that her primary symptom was chest pain. Well of course, they wanted her to come into the emergency room.
I could see my previous plans for the morning quickly slipping away. Watching "House Calls" at 10? Nope. Picking up lunch from Poulet before heading to my hair appointment? Nope. And I really needed that carrot cake.
Part of me figured that she was just being overly dramatic. But then there was that little part of me that kept saying, "What if you're wrong? Won't you feel bad if something really bad happens to her?" That second question? Bet you'd get a different answer if you were to ask me that now.
So I dragged myself up, threw on some clothes, brushed my teeth and headed on over. Did I mention that it is usually a 20 minute drive to my mother's house? This gives one lots of time to stew. Topics such as why didn't she call someone who lives closer to her. But then that just seemed too logical. When I was two minutes away, my phone rang. "Where are you?" So she hadn't died while I was trying to get there.
She was standing in the driveway when I pulled up to the house. See? Really sick. The first words out her mouth upon entering my car were, "I tried to call a couple of neighbors before I called you but they weren't available. Also it's the hospital being dramatic, not me." I was probably glaring by this point. That's why I'm guessing I received this unsolicited explanation. My thought at the moment was, "She'd better be really sick." She also made some proclamations about what kind of treatment she wanted. "I'm not taking an inhaler."
I dropped her off at the emergency room and then went to park the car. Waiting in the emergency room gave me the opportunity to start reading The Poe Shadow. Eventually she came out of the exam room with a pissed off look on her face. It seems that they determined that she was not an emergency and had referred her to her regular doctor.
"Why couldn't they just finish everything here?"
"Perhaps because you are not an emergency."
I should have mentioned the guy they wheeled back into the exam area who had been complaining about chest pain. Now he looked like he was having a heart attack.
She arrived at the doctor's office and was immediately sent off. They wanted x-rays and blood work done. More grumbling. Then my favorite part.
"Where is radiology and the lab?"
"Ummm. Wasn't this your main facility? You don't know where it is?"
Did I forget to mention that Drama Queen used to work for this particular health care provider? Well, she did. What's more she worked with the design team and this particular location had been one of her main assignments.
I escorted her to the lab and told her I would be back. It was about 11:30 and my stomach was trying to digest itself. Not a pleasant feeling. I also needed to call to reschedule my 1:00 hair appointment.
When I returned, I waited for her outside of the doctor's office. She then started a tirade about having had to go to three different places in the morning. OK. Deep cleansing breaths. She then mentioned having to pick up a prescription.
"To which pharmacy did the doctor call in the prescription?"
"I don't know."
As it turns out, the doctor hadn't called in the prescription yet. I asked that he call it into the less congested pharmacy. While we waited, the grumbling continued.
"He wanted to give me robitussin with codeine. I told him that I wasn't taking anything with codeine in it since it makes me constipated. He also wanted to give me an inhaler. I told him that I only would take the inhaler."
After some time, her prescription still wasn't ready. I told her to go to the desk to see if it had been called in. It had -- at the other pharmacy. More grumbling as we made our way there. Finally it was ready -- and it contained two other things besides the inhaler. She returned two after the consultation with the pharmacist and then stated, "If you weren't in such a rush, I'd go back up there and curse that doctor out." Thank goodness for my appointment.
I drove out of there as quickly as possible. The whole ride was her screaming about every wrongdoing that she perceived in her visit while I thought, "Shoot me now."
So now I am off to my hair appointment finally. And I am busy trying to make plans for myself for during the next week because I am going to have to start telling the Drama Queen "no" if I hope to remain sane.