My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Friday, September 4, 2009

sick and tired of being sick and tired

This is the longest period of time I have been out of work and not doing something in... well, in a very long time. I'm still sick. I'm running fevers off and on (mainly whenever the tylenol gets out of my system). I'm coughing worse than I did during the entire 8 weeks of bronchitis (which ended just two short weeks ago). I'm so snotty I've gone through almost a whole box of tissues since yesterday. I have ZERO appetite (and I NEVER lose my appetite! I could eat during a stomach virus! So this is weird).

I'll be honest, I think we have swine flu. Austin tested negative for flu on Monday and I wasn't tested. I was tested for strep but not flu because I didn't have the cough, runny nose, fluey feeling until later on Monday.

At this point... I've been home almost all week. My exposure to people, even at my office that brief half day I worked this week was minimal. I stayed in my office and really didn't visit much with anyone. I didn't feel well so I wasn't very social. We've been to Walmart twice, to the drugstore, to the bakery, the bank... We have really stayed home and stayed to ourselves BUT... I still worry that we may have exposed people even with as little as we did.

Here's something odd... and very "God" to me... You guys know how much I look forward to my time with the girls at church. I love picking them up from their classes and they love having me pick them up. That's our thing. Circumstances just worked out last Sunday where I didn't pick them up. I can't help but think now that God was protecting them from being exposed to anything. Even if it is just a bad cold that we've had.

I tried ALL day today to get back in to see my doctor or to have her call me in an antibiotic. She was the one who told me that any time I get a cold or respiratory infection that we have to be careful to make sure it doesn't turn into pneumonia because of the granulomas in my lungs. I'm just at higher risk... when I saw her on Monday she told me if I was still sick today to let her know and she'd probably want to give me an antibiotic shot and then do a course of something strong to be on the safe side. So when the nurse called me back at 1 - from the message I left at 9am - and said they were calling in amoxicillin - I gently and kindly reminded her and asked her to remind the doctor that I needed something stronger.

Two hours later when I hadn't heard anything - I called back to the doctors office and explained to the receptionist why I REALLY needed to talk to the doctor before the three day weekend and how concerned I was that (because I've been running fevers) that if I couldn't be seen, I at least needed to be on a stronger antibiotic than amoxicillin.

I was frustrated with this process and so Austin and I went out to Sonic to take advantage of Sonic Happy Hour (half price drinks - soft drinks, I mean!) and stopped by the pharmacy. They had a prescription ready for me - amoxicillin. I called the doctor as soon as I got home and talked to the nurse again and said, "please check my chart... I don't think the doctor is getting my messages because she was the one who said I needed something strong... " and when the girl read back to me from my chart "need to advise patient that amoxicillin is the first course of treatment for strep throat"... I freaked... I used my "outside voice"... I told her that I had tested NEGATIVE for strep - that should be in my chart... I told her that I had not described even HAVING a sore throat in the three times I had talked to their office today - that my symptoms were more in line with the flu than strep throat and I told her that I had missed an entire week of work. The doctor had noted in my chart, "have patient take amoxicillin for the weekend and if still experiencing symptoms on Tuesday to come back in at that time". I was so upset. I said, "apparently I need to just go to urgent care and let them treat me since your office is not able to".

She assured me that she would have the doctor call me right back, that she would make sure she understood what was going on with my symptoms and all... and... well, that was 4 1/2 hours ago and I never heard anything back. Soooo... if I'm not better tomorrow, I will go to urgent care. I can't afford to let this spin any further out of control. And then on Tuesday I will call and talk to the office manager at the doctors office and make sure they understand that between four employees that I dealt with there, no one seemed to be able to connect the dots where my care is concerned. And then... I will start looking for another doctors office because that is completely unacceptable. I have a chronic illness and my care has to be consistently managed. I don't have the luxury of having a medical advocate (such as a spouse) and so I need to know that when I'm sick and I make a phone call to the doctor to let them know, they will respond on the first phone call. Nobody who is sick enough to need medical attention feels good enough to make four phone calls to the doctors office in one day. And seriously - if this does go into pneumonia - I'll be talking to my good friend Attorney Matt about a malpractice suit.

But she did call me in a very tiny bottle of cough syrup. *eyeroll*

The good news is that I have three long days ahead of me to do what I've needed to do for the past year - rest. I can stay in my pajamas the whole time. I don't plan to go out and about and be around people because whether its flu or cold - I want to be certain that I'm not contagious.

Now I'm watching college football preview shows! Good times!

Anyways... your prayers are appreciated. I need to be well. And I have to figure out how to make up for a week's lost income...


Barbara said...

Prayers going up.

Dutch said...

Heather, I hope you get better real soon. I am sending all my prayers your way.