Would you like me to scream now….or later?

When I was still with the asshole, I thought that the hardest job in the world was being a military wife.

I was wrong.

The single hardest job in the world is being a single parent.  Hands down.  I give mad props to women that have raised children – well-adjusted, polite, caring, giving, sweet, smart, accomplished children – on their own and have still retained their sanity.

It’s women like that that give me hope.

Yesterday was a horrible day.  It was one of those days where I just had reached the wall.  So many things went wrong.  So many things ramped up my frustration level.  It was one of those days that could only be cured by wine, delivered in this vessel:

Yes, it does hold a whole bottle of wine. Thank goodness! No reason to get up to refil!!

(You can find the Bottle of Wine Giant Wine Glass at http://www.vat19.com/dvds/bottle-of-wine-glass.cfm#! – it’s only $12 and it fits a whole bottle of wine!  I’m buying one for spring break!!)

You recall, I’m sure, that my son broke his finger.  I jumped through hoops with the insurance company to get him a referral on Monday for an appointment on Tuesday.  I secured an appointment for 1130 am and left my office at 1030 to make sure I had enough time to get my son from school and then make the appointment time.

We got to the ortho office at 1115, which was perfect (in my mind) because I knew we would have paperwork to fill out as my son would be considered a new patient.  I went up to the front window to check in and happened to step up behind another patient.  As I waited my turn, I hear the man say, “My appointment was at 1030.  I was wondering if you had forgotten about me.”

Well, this doesn’t bode well.

The receptionist, in a less than sweet and mostly snarky voice says, “No sir, we didn’t forget about you.  We are backed up.”

He left to go back and take the seat he had been in (which now has his butt mark in it because he was sitting there so long) and I walk up to the window.  I have all of the paperwork I need to get checked in (referral, doctor’s notes, etc) and I tell them we have an 1130 appointment.  She says to sign in and hands me paperwork to fill out.  I ask, “Do you want this paperwork to make copies?”  She says, “No, we might lose them.”

Wow, I’m not very impressed yet.

I then ask her, “How far behind are you?”

She looks at me with a smirk and says, “At least an hour.”

EXCUSE ME?????

I say, “You’re an hour behind and you didn’t bother to call anyone to let them know that?”

She says, “We don’t call to let you know that we’re running behind.  That is not a service we offer.”

I look her dead in the eyes and say, “Really?  Unprofessional much?”

I then take my son to the waiting room knowing that this is going to be the hour from hell.  See, my youngest is not someone who is happy with his own thoughts or with a book or just sitting quietly.  No, he has to be entertained.

As expected, 5 minutes after we sit down, he starts in.  It was kinda like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNkp4QF3we8

It was awful!  His litany was “Mom, I’m hungry,” over and over and over and over and over again.

I mean, seriously, what did he expect me to do?  We were right next door to a Wendy’s and a Checkers, but I didn’t feel like we could go get any food without maybe missing getting called back to see the doc.

Now, remember our appointment was at 1130.  At 1205, we finally get called up to the window.  The woman takes my paperwork and asks for my son’s ID card.  She takes all this and I ask her, “How much longer?  It’s already a half hour past my appointment time.”  She says, “There’s still two people ahead of you, it’ll probably be another 30 minutes.”

At this point, I stopped being nice.  I lit into the smug bitch.  Tore her up one side and down the other for the fact that I’m already 30 minutes past my appointment time, how rude and unprofessional they are and how unhappy I am.

I proably was a little rough on her, but my son had pushed every single last button I had.  I wanted to curl up in a ball and cry.

She has all the paperwork and looks up at me and says, “Thank you for all the paperwork, I’ll get it back to you in a minute.”  I said, “Well, I need his ID card back.”  She says, “I need a copy of it.  I’ll bring it to you.”

Yes, I admit this next part was a little petty and I was smirking through it, but I hold my hand out and say, “You can make as many copies as you want, but I’m not leaving this window without his ID card.  The lady down there (jerking my thumb to the right) says you lose paperwork.  I can’t afford to lose his ID card.”

She looks at me with mouth agape, no words for me, and then says, “OK.” She made a copy and handed it back.

I then say, “Is it alright if I bring food into the waiting room?  My son is very hungy and would like to eat.”  She says, “Sure, you can bring in whatever you want.”

So I stride out of the clinic with my son in tow.  I look at him and say, “What do you want?  Wendy’s or Checkers?”

He says, “I don’t want either.  I want Dunkin Donuts.”

I say, with admirable patience, “We can’t get Dunkin Donuts.  You can chose Wendy’s or Checkers.”

He says, with a pout, “I don’t want either of those.”

Cue the crying mom.

I was so frustrated, so upset with him, so upset with the situation.  It was ridiculous!  He had just spent the better part of 30 minutes complaining about being hungry and then he wouldn’t even bend an itty-bitty bit to eat what I could offer.

So we go back into the waiting room.

Where he proceeds to tell me over and over and over and over again, “Mom, I’m hungry.”

At this point, I was ready to let him starve forever.

Now, the only funny point of the day came when we walked back into the clinic.  This older lady who had been there since we got there was yelling at the room in general.  “I don’t know why you want to get in my face!  If you want to get in my face, you better come with your fists raised!  I don’t take no shit from anyone!”

I look around the room trying to see if she was talking to anyone in particular.

Nope.  No one.  And the room looked hilarious.  Everyone was watching her with mouths agape, some tittering little giggles, other upset by her display.  I turned to the lady next to me and asked what set her off.  She says, “I have no idea!”

Guess it was just a random granny drive-by cussing.

So, finally, at 1235 (an hour and 5 minutes past our appointment time), we get called to the back.  There, we meet a very nice tech who proceeds to poke, prod and push on my son’s finger, trying to gauge the level of pain that he is feeling.  He does this and then leaves to check the xrays.  He comes back and says, “The PA will be with you in a minute.”

Excuse me?

A PA?  We wait over an  hour past our appointment time and we don’t even get to see a doctor?  Are you kidding me?

So he leaves to deal with other patients, leaving me in the waiting room with my son who proceeds to say, over and over, “Mom, I’m hungry.  Mom, I’m bored.”

Like a litany from some horror movie that you aren’t allowed to turn off or get away from.

We wait 30 minutes in that freaking exam room for the PA to come in.

We are now 1.5 hours past our appointment time.

She talks, discusses, looks at.  Then declares (something I had known since Friday) that they were going to cast the hand.

She says, “I’ll send the tech in to cast him.  I’m sorry, I have to go.  They double booked me again today.”

WHOA!!!! HOLD IT RIGHT THERE!

My jaw drops, my eyes widen.  I actually stick my arm out so that she can’t get out the door and I say, “Excuse me?  What did you just say?  Did you just state that they double book you all day?”

She says, “Yes.  I’ve spoken to them about it numerous times and they won’t stop.”

I said, “I’m telling you, and you can let them know, that I will be filing a grievance with my insurance provider on base when I’m done here.”

She says, and this is the most amazing part, “Please do.  Maybe then they’ll have to change their practices.”

She leaves, the tech comes in and puts the cast on my son.  It’s shockingly pink 🙂

We finally leave the orth doc, over 2 hours past our appointment time.  When we left, I told him I was going to Checkers and that was where I was getting food.  All of the sudden, the boy is totally fine with that.  He happily munches away on his food on the way back to the base and just can’t understand why I am so pissed at him.

Between him and the ortho clinic’s idiocy, I was ready for that glass of wine.  I was ready to just curl up in a ball and cry until there was nothing left.

Luckily, the rest of my week went off without a hitch.  As I finish typing this post, that son is at a friend’s house where he spent the  night and my oldest son is curled up on the couch – no telling when he finally went to bed last night.  I’m taking the oldest bowling today before we go pick up his brother.  We BOTH needed a break from the youngest.

I don’t know what I’m going to do with him.  Luckily, Spring Break is in just a few days.  That’ll give me some time and distance to figure out my next move! 🙂

Happy Saturday, everyone!

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6 thoughts on “Would you like me to scream now….or later?

  1. You have actually entered 2 worlds…the single parent and being far from supportive family. Some of my friends often remarked they didn’t know how I did it ‘all those years’, but I always pointed out that my parents were close by to help out. I tried hard not to abuse their availability, and I was lucky to have a job that had sick time benefits that could be used by the hour for appointments.

    I actually think orthopedic offices are all the same. We have two large groups in the area and both leave you in the waiting room for at least an hour, then another half hour or so in the room.

    Hang in there, I know you can do it!!!!

  2. UGH. Sounds awful! I was a single parent with two daughters for many years, so I can relate to the stress and aggravation, even though I realize that I probably had it easy as my daughters were (for the most part) calm and easy to deal with. It was the financial struggle that got to me, since I was the sole support of my household and I was self-employed. I wouldn’t revisit those years for anything!

    Hang in there…. as they say, “This, too, shall pass.” Or my personal mantra: “It’s only temporary, it’s only temporary, it’s only temporary…..”

  3. As everyone has said, hang in there. You can do this. It is awful at times, but it gets better, right? I’m hoping, still waiting, but I’ve been told it gets better. . . 🙂 Debbie is so right, two worlds — single parent and no family close by. Tough. I use to sit through moments like this and think “would this be happening if I were still with the asshole?” The answer undoubtedly was yes, and the only thing that would have been different might have been that I could have vented a bit to someone who was capable of actually listening and kind of understanding, but then I would realize that I was giving him far more credit than I should have been giving him. Same shit would have happened and he would have been just as non-supportive as ever. What’s worse? Just offering that you are incredibly strong and this WILL pass. Crying is allowed too, you know. Hugs!

    • You know, I know it would be just this frustrating if I were still with the asshole. I think that adds a level of frustration to the frustration layer cake that I have to eat on a daily basis. Cause he got to just leave and not deal with any of this crap. Totally pisses me off. And I know that I’m better off without him and that I’m doing fine without him, but I would love for him to walk in my shoes for just one day and see what I have to deal with. I mean, I know it wouldn’t change anything, but it would be nice.

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