Hmmm. . .


You know that song? Things That Make You Go Hmmm? It’s old, but it’s in my head tonight. I’m starting to think that my perspective on things is skewed, because no one else I know seems to have this kind of stuff going on in their lives. Maybe I am just over-thinking it all? Hmmm….

I called the neurologist’s office this morning to ask about Dan’s EEG results. The office has an automated menu that directs you to the answering machine you need for your situation. This kind of thing used to tick me off, but, honestly, I am so happy they don’t use the horrible voice-recognition thing where you have to shout YES or NO into your phone, causing everyone else in the house to jump and stare. Hmmm…

I made it to the test results option and pushed the button. Mind you, I had my own kids AND, I think, an extra four here today (I agree, I should keep better track, but they all look the same!). It was noisy and I was continually distracted – even when I took the phone out to huddle by the washing machine. I reached my phone destination and was assaulted with a long list of things I MUST include in my message. I was warned that if I did not include these listed things my call would be bumped down on the priority list. Then the machine explained that my call would be returned within 24-48 hours. UNLESS I left more than one message. I was instructed that if I’d already left a message, to leave another message would only slow things down for me. Hmmmm…

Well, with 8-ish boys running through the house, crouching uncomfortably next to my dryer and trying to listen to the message (I wish I had thought to bring a pen and paper) I lost track of the list of info I needed to leave in my message. I left my message and gave them all but our bank account number. I hung up. Then I panicked. So, I called back, but then chickened out because I didn’t want to leave two messages and reduce my chance of getting an answer. I hung up. Then I called again. I pushed the option to speak to the operator. I explained my dilemma. I thought it was kind of funny. She was perfectly polite, but didn’t find it funny at all. Hmmmm. . .

However . . . a nurse returned my call around 5 pm. She, too, was very polite. She informed me that EEG’s take at least two weeks to process (I think I watch too much HOUSE – he does all those tests really fast) and didn’t we have an appointment with the neurologist in early October? I said my understanding was that the EEG would be read and, if it was warranted, we would keep the “temporary” appointment with the doctor. I stated I was just curious about the status of the test. Well, I’m a big dummy.

The nurse patiently and politely explained to me that even IF she did have the EEG results, as Dan had never actually seen the neurologist we weren’t considered patients and she couldn’t release the results to me. I thought about this for a full minute and told her that I didn’t understand, that this made no sense. BUT, if that was the case, could the results be released to Danny’s regular doctor and I could maybe talk to her about them? No go. So, we wait until October 7 to meet with the neurologist.

I KNOW this is a busy practice and I have no real complaint. BUT, even if Danny’s issues are minor in their opinion, they’re BIG and SCARY here. If nothing else, can’t the people on the phone pretend a little empathy or concern? You’ve all done it – you’ve forced yourself to SMILE while you’re talking on the phone to someone unpleasant or disinterested. And that fake SMILE works. It carries into your tone of voice.

I get having a job where you are dealing with the same questions over and over and the same comments over and over. Try working concession at a movie theater – think many people comment on the prices of popcorn and soda? In case you wonder, they do. And movie customers are vocal. And I agreed with them. But … I was working at the concession stand in a big-chain movie theater. I wasn’t setting the prices?? I was always taught to smile to the public and bitch in private. It’s better for business. And, it isn’t as satisfying as telling off customers, but it’s much more effective. I can’t imagine a doctor’s office is any different.

I don’t call for no reason. I’m not an (or is it “a”) hysterical parent. I’m busy too. I don’t want to waste my time or theirs. I’m calling because I’m anxious, not to make someone’s job harder or to make someone unhappy. I’m on my guard to be polite, to smile when I talk and to be civil when I disagree. The only time I’ve ever veered from this was with the Chase-kitchen-debacle.

So, for now, we wait. Dan is being vigilant with his notebook and keeping track of his episodes. I don’t think it’s anything life-threatening, but it’s VERY disheartening for Dan right now. He’s frustrated and understandably stressed out. I’m trying to avoid hovering and being psycho, but mom’s have limits.

Funny thing, after I talked to the doctor’s office, I headed outside to do some laundry. I heard the phone ring. Ian answered. He was answering and coming out to give the phone to me. Suddenly, he said, “Oh, OK.” and headed back into the house. When I caught up with him, he said it was the lady (Grace) from Home Depot again. She called me early last week, I returned her call, and nothing and I kind of forgot about it. Last week she asked for me. This week, she’s asking for Mike. Good luck with that, Grace.

Mike actually came home a little early. He tried to return Grace’s call. He had to key in our account number, was asked for his social security number and had to explain why Scout (the dog) has never had puppies before the person he was talking to could not locate ANY Grace (lol) in their system. Go figure.

I cannot imagine what The Home Depot wants. We paid our bill. They sent us a new bill for late fees and other charges. We’ll bite our tongues, pay that and close our account. FOREVER.

I guess the whole “Whatever” attitude is everywhere – doctor’s office, big retail, phone companies, and banks. I’m done with “Whatever” and I hope I’m not alone. It’s not easy to switch accounts and demonstrate that you deserve better treatment, but if we don’t do it, who will? ACK!

7 thoughts on “Hmmm. . .

  1. ACK! I wanted to reach through the computer and scream with you!
    I don't understand it seems they almost make more work for themselves..

    I hope you get your results and soon!

  2. I'm sorry that call resolved nothing for you. I think we're supposed to stuff our emotions into our pockets and then when we do laundry, we're supposed to find them in the dryer as hard little nubs with lint covering them. Or maybe that's tissues.

  3. Neurologist's offices are THE WORST. Somewhere out there is one of those aptitude tests that says something to the effect of, “No people skills? Hey, you should become a NEUROLOGIST or at least work in a neuro's office!”

  4. Oh (((Am))) I know, I really know how frustrating it is to not know what's wrong with your baby boy. I don't give a crap if he's in high school, he's still your baby. Just follow the advice that you gave me when it was Jake, & I was stressing so hard, just try to relax. It's almost impossible, I know, but you're only going to make yourself sick & that's not going to do anybody any good. I'm ALWAYS here if you need to talk or bitch or whatever. Love you !!

  5. Yeah, whatever is going on all around me right now too. It really sucks.

    Just keep bugging them, eventually they'll get so tired of you, they'll help you just to shut you up.

    Ask me how I know.

  6. I thought of you, Amy, when I was watching House and turned to Steve and said, “You know, between last season and this one, I've had an awful lot of these tests.” You must feel like you could be on the diagnostic team by now.

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