A 5-hour Ride in the Wanhmublance

Today has been a long day.

Technically this all started last Sunday. I was fine all day, but at around 8pm, POW. My lungs suddenly feel as though they’ve been filled with Crisco. By Monday morning, the coughing has started. A constant, dry cough. And my Crisco-filled lungs have the weight of an anvil on them.

A hot (whoops, too hot?) pad on my chest helps with the Crisco/anvil feeling, but the coughing persists.

And there is the coughing. Oh man, the coughing. My abs hurt from the coughing. Hey, involuntary workout! Neat! My throat is getting ripped up from the coughing. I haven’t slept in three nights from the coughing.

By Saturday morning, I’d been beaten. Knowing that my regular doc’s office closes at 12:30 on Saturdays, and there was little-to-no chance of me getting an appointment on such short notice anyway, I set my sights on urgent care.

11:15 am – Check into [Name Withheld] Urgent Care. Fill out 3-1/2 pages of paperwork, realize that my expensive-but-crappy insurance will not cover this, decide that I am not so sick as to pay $327 (actual fee) for a doctor to prescribe cough syrup, leave.

11:35 am – Call regular doctor from urgent care parking lot and beg, plead, cajole for appointment. Receptionist directs me to their own urgent care office, which, while located in Boulder (a not-convenient drive), charges as a regular doctor visit instead of an urgent care visit.

11:40 am – Call the Boulder urgent care office and verify this. Thank them profusely.

12:15 pm – Check in to Boulder Medical Center urgent care desk. Fill out half a sheet of paperwork. Wait.

1:00 pm – Check back with receptionist. Another 45 minutes, she thinks. The urgent care waiting room is packed. Three of us have the same hacking cough.

2:35 pm – I’m finally brought into an exam room. Friendly, efficient, thorough nurse. Friendly, efficient, thorough doctor. I really do love the staff at Boulder Medical Center, and everyone I  interact with there today, at both the Louisville and Boulder offices, are examples of why I’ve been going there for years (and why I made sure even my crappy insurance was accepted by their offices when I was choosing a carrier).

3:05 pm – Diagnosis of acute bronchitis complete, prescriptions for two meds (one for daytime, one for nighttime) faxed to my pharmacy. Instructions to call them if my meds aren’t ready for me when I get there.

3:30 pm – Pharmacy fax machine is down, they don’t have my meds yet. Come back in 15 minutes.

3:50 pm – Pharmacy fax is still down, but they’re working on it. Come back in 10 minutes.

4:05 pm – Oh thank goodness, my meds are finally ready. My feeble lungs can’t take all of this “pacing aimlessly” activity, and I’m actually getting ready to crawl up under the pharmacy counter just to have a place to sit.

All in all, it took nearly five hours to go from Urgent Care A to having meds in hand. Parents, who probably need to deal with this kind of thing multiple times a year, you have my sympathies. And should get a special ribbon or something. I’d make you one, but I only have enough breath to sit here and type. I’m saving my energy so I can get to the couch and lift the remote.

3 Replies to “A 5-hour Ride in the Wanhmublance”

  1. Get better soon! Believe me, it can get much worse when you have kids. Imagine having three kids who get sick on Friday night, Saturday Morning and Sunday night respectively. Thank the Gods for Pediatric Urgent Care. You know it’s been a bad year when the receptionist at the Urgent Care facility knows you and your children by name.


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