Let's just start with that, shall we?
So, yesterday - it was a really nice, nice day - sunny and warm and not a dark cloud in the sky.... and it's El Capitan's day so they head out for adventures at the zoo and at FroYo ... the usual. I was looking forward to my day with them - thinking about may be going to the Oregon Coast, or possibly hitting up a local park trail. However, Mother Nature has other
So, we take out time getting up and going today..... and eventually I decide to take them to a Pizza place that has a giant 100 ft high climbing/sliding structure and those huge blow up slidey things. The kids *love* it there, but it costs money to get in and play and then there's the cost of food, however, I wanted to let them run out their weekend energy and have fun so we get there.. pay - order a pizza - but only a small pizza with pineapple for the kids.
First pizza has only pepperoni.
Second pizza has only cheese. Can they just throw on some pineapple?
Nope... THIRD pizza comes... it has pepperoni AND pineapple.
F*ck it. I pick off the pepperoni and serve it to them.
Done. I'm not sure, I'm not bitchy... it's just pizza - we're there to play for several house, so I'm not in a hurry and I'm not above picking off the pepperoni.... no biggie.
(But *seriously* you have ONE JOB! and it's making a pizza with ONE topping.... sigh.)
I've settled in with the Kindle to watch The L Word and/or Twilight.... and not long after the third pizza arrives and is cut up on their plates, The Girl comes running back over and say's she wants to go home, which is odd. As I said - they *love* it there and usually we stay for hours on end... but my kids aren't the whining type - so if they say they want to go - we go.
I tell her to give The Boy a ten minute warning and she's grumpy: she wants to go NOW.
Odd.... but The Boy comes bounding over and I give him the bad news - he turns to The Girl and questions her - Do we have to go?
Yes. - The Girl is emphatic on the point.
The Boy looks at me curious... even he knows this is odd, but he just got over a cough/cold and she's got a wee cough and a runny nose - so I chalk it up to that and we go home.
We arrive home, settle on the couch and watch Garfield: The Movie.
Then The Girl and The Bubbie make chicken pot pie for dinner... The Girl's favorite.
Fifteen minutes later, The Girl is sitting back on the couch and The Bubbie is calling for me to come look at The Girl's eye and do it *now*..... she yells it to me in that sing-song voice that screams "get the f*ck in there right now" - but cleverly disguised in a melody - "honey.... come here.....".
I get to the couch and The Girl looks.... fine?
"Look at her left eye........" say's The Bubbie.
Just then The Girl looks up at me and I can BOTH of her eyes - in the white part - are filling up with blood that covers the entire upper eyeball and is circling down the colored part of the eye.
What. The. F*ck.
No falls, no tripping, no excessive eye rubbing or poking or coughing or vomiting has happened.... so I have no clue why there is blood in The Girl's eyes. I immediately call my friend is who an EMT and she say's to take The Girl to the ER.
Shoes on and off we go........
On the way, I try to call El Capitan, but... as I still don't have the number for *his* iPhone... and the drug-dealer/disposable phone won't connect my call to him and texts are going unanswered ... I resort to calling Yoga Girl who promptly send my calls to voice mail (In the history of our time I have called this number two times now.... just FYI - and the last time was *also* for a medical thing related to the kids.)
"Hi. XXXXXX, this is Elle. I'm trying to get a hold of XXXXXXX, I am on my way to St. Vincent's ER with [The Girl] because she has blood pooling in the whites of both her eyes. To my knowledge she hasn't fallen or anything... in fact I have no answer for why this is happening, but we're on our way there now - can you let XXXXXXX know. Thank You."
I post a picture of the bloody eyes on Facebook and shout our for ideas as to why this is happening (I have lots of clients who are nurses/peds doctors....) - and off we go to the hospital.
We arrive and I give them our new State sponsored Health Insurance and they send us to the waiting area.
We have never had the State insurance before - until El Capitan was no longer with his employer, we *always* paid for the full-up best PPO plan that we could. Even then, according to our *taxes* - our out of pocket expenses for health care was over $12,000 per year - which was nearly 22% of our combined annual income.
For five years running we incurred these costs - totaling nearly $60,000 in medical care.
Why don't have I f*cking savings?
Why don't have a 401k?
I currently pay $430 a month for *my* insurance and then the kids are on the Oregon Health Plan - which is a state program for low-income families. Good times..... for now, it's the best I can do - and it's only their third month on the program.
We get called for the triage nurse and she asks The Girl if she hit her head.....I start to say no when The Girl pipes up, "Yeah.... I was at the top of the slide and some people were in my way and the girl was talking to the older girl and I went down the slide and I bumped a bigger boy at the bottom."
Wait. WHAT? Huh.......?
The nurses asks her what she hit and The Girl points to her forehead/between her eyes area.
Mother of The F*kcingYear. Awesomesauce.
Based on this information we now "move up" the scale because now this is considered a 'head injury' and a short time later we are called again and taken back to an eye exam room.
Where we sit..... for over 30 minutes.
But... I'm a patient person - remember me and my three pizza fiasco....? I'm not above waiting. I'm certainly aware that a hospital is a *busy* and not only are we not the only sickest people there - we are likely not *the* sickest people there.... so, happy to wait.
Eventually in walks a student on loan from Oregon Health and Sciences University - who tells me that he's a resident and that he'll see our case and present it to his main doctor guy.
Cool. I've seen Grey's Anatomy/ER/Chicago Hope... I know how this works: no worries.
We're going to call him Super New Doctor A.
Please note... the "A" is not going to be for awesome.
Super New Doctor A listens to her heart.
Super New Doctor A listens to her chest: for the cough.
Super New Doctor A asks The Girl to cover one eye and tell him if she can still see him.
Being three f*ckingyears old... she covers both eyes and replies, "No."
Super New Doctor A takes his hand and covers one eye and asks her again if she can see him.
Super New Doctor A does it with the other eye: she can still see him.
Super New Doctor A tests The Girl's perriferal vision on ONE eye... but doesn't bother with other.
Super New Doctor A notes that her face seems "swollen" and asks if that is normal: it is not.
Super New Doctor A asks me if we have any blood disorders in our family: we do not.
We do, however... have a history of a special kind of cataract.
When The Boy was three and I was pregnant with The Girl, I noticed he was holding toys very close to his face and I assumed he probably needed glasses. With threeish weeks left in my pregnancy, I took him to Wal-Mart for an eye exam.... I left with an appointment at The XXXXXX Eye Institute, after having been informed that The Boy was completely blind in his right eye.
The Wal-Mart doctor said he had a cataract that had totally taken over the entire eye.
The next afternoon, we were seeing Dr. XXXXXXX, a world-renowned specialist in these kinds of genetic cataracts. Unlike "normal" cataracts - that your Grandma might have - they are not chalky white or blue: his are black. Solid and snake-like, they swirl around and make spots, or take over the eye altogether.
Five days before my c-section, The Boy had a total lens replacement in his right eye to remove the cataract and restore his vision. Our out of pocket that year was nearly $14,000.00.
In Kindergarten, The Boy went blind in his left eye when *another* cataract took over that eye.
$8,000 later.... and another total lens replacement, he could see again.
I tell the doctor that *this* kind of cataract has to be seen with a infrared light - usually found on the BACK of the standard eye exam took that doctors use - AND - we have never known if an injury sets these cataracts off or if it's just a natural progression, but he should check The Girl for this now.
Super New Doctor A chuckles.
Super New Doctor A then say's this.... "You know... in all my years of education I've never heard of such a thing and I question whether a "black" cataract exists."
Excuse me, f*ck what?
I say nothing... becuase I'm sure that I've misheard such a thing... right?
Super New Doctor A then goes on to say.... "I'm not saying such a thing can't exist, but it seems unlikely as I've never heard of it."
Literally - STRUCK by DUMB.
So.... let me get this straight, I've paid over $20,000 to TWO hospitals for two unnecessary surgeries performed by a world-renowned pediatric eye surgeon.... and all because *you* -
Super New Doctor A - RESIDENT - has "never heard of such a thing."
Super New Doctor A smiles and chuckles a yes.
I said nothing.
He then tells me that the Subconjunctival hemmorrage - was caused by extreme coughing and is "nothing to worry about" - but perhaps they'll give her some tylenol and a treatment of albuteral.
Ok..... I say - sure.
He comments that he thinks we're "not on the same side" in seeking treatment for The Girl.... to which I reply: it would seem that way.
He gets up and tells me he's going to order the albuteral and meds and have the main doctor review his decisions.
Now. *IF* my child has such a severe cough that she blew out the blood vessels in here eyes... why is she not really coughing now?
Doesn't that warrant a possibly ex ray to rule our pneumonia or bronchitis.....?
Possibly talk of asthma?
Finally El Capitan arrives.... hooray. I fill him in on Super New Doctor A - to which he's annoyed.... but there's nothing we can do.
Shortly after The Real Doctor arrives, he doesn't evaluate her eyes.
The Real Doctor doesn't feel her face, her forehead, her cheek bones.
The Real Doctor doesn't look for those fictitious "cataracts" I'm obviously lying about.
The Real Doctor doesn't perform and eye exam.
The Real Doctor listens to her chest: it's clear he say's.
The Real Doctor notes the absence of "extreme" or "severe" coughing.
The Real Doctor asks The Girl if she got hurt today and The Girl repeats the *same* story she told the nurse when we got there.
The Real Doctor decides that The Girl has a head injury and that there is visibly swelling in her forehead, between her eyebrows, the bridge of her nose and her lips.
Yup... there sure is.
The Real Doctor decides that this is a Subconjunctival hemmorrage from a head injury.
The Real Doctor say's it's ... "no big deal" and he'd take The Girl home, feed her dinner and put her to bed.
El Capitan asks if we should wake her every few hours: No, there's not hard and fast rules for that and The Real Doctor doesn't feel that The Girl would need that.
No facial exam.
No cranial exam - which instruments or hands.....
He sends in a nurse with tylenol, a sticker and a bambi stuffed animal.
That was nice, The Girl was tickled.
The Discharge nurse walks in to have us sigh our papers and give us our instructions but while I'm singing the paperwork she gets a phone call, which she answers.... then she looks up, gives El Capitan a 'thumbs up' sign, a nod and waves goodbye.
So we leave.
Several of my nurse friends assure me that this is "no big deal" and while it looks scary - it's nothing and The Girl will be ok... though two of them are clearly surprised that no further tests were ordered after The Real Doctor determined it was head trauma.
Whatever. I'll be calling our eye specialist in the morning and getting The Girl over to see him ASAP... you know - the one who 'makes up' cataracts that don't exists and puts my child throw two major lens replacements just for financial gain.... and man - he must be good since he had the Vancouver Wal-Mart eye doctor in on his plan.... I wonder what her kick-back is for that.
Super New Doctor A You have ONE JOB: to do a thorough exam on my child.
You did *not* do that.
The Real Doctor, you have ONE JOB: to do a thorough exam on my child and work with your student to compare notes and decide on treatment.
You did *not* do that.
And this... f*ckers: it's PIZZA.
It's my child and her blood filled eyes.... which is *kind of* something I would really, really like you to get right. It's not that hard... it's ONE JOB - for which you get paid a sh*t ton of money.
You should do that job *without* making me feel like some kind of white-trash/social assistance/Munchhausen-Mom...... THAT shouldn't be too f*cking hard.
Especially since *both* my children have *Always* enjoyed the sh*tty service supplied to them by St. Vincents and as such... their *entire* medical charts are on your damn computer.
Look that sh*t up.
One job... and that *this* point: I'll take my chances with the Wal-Mart eye doctor and the little dude makin' my pizza at the pizza place today.... at least he kept trying.
Upside: I don't have to pay a motherf*ckingmeaselypenny for this shoddy-a$$ service.
Better Upside: Yoga Girl, El Capitan and I worked together for the betterment of the children.
Sweet.... that's a small victory I'll take tonight.
Two Bloody-Eyes - Sigh.
What a start to the week........