Monday, April 10, 2006
Easter Eggs and Bodyslams
We ended up going to the Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, despite all the coughing, snot, and eye puss. Chunk wasn't his usual charming self, thanks to a restless night before and an exaggerated distaste for getting his nose wiped by either parent, but he had a fun time. He even found (with a little help from Denver Mom) an Easter egg and couldn't be more happy.
It was actually kind of neat. There were a ton of kids who were carrying around plastic bags filled with ten to twenty eggs, but Chunk walked around like he had won the lotto, clutching his one, purple plastic egg. Some kids were crying about their lack of eggs. Not Chunk. He was pretty pleased with himself and having a great time just running around, egg in hand.
The highlight, in that horror-tinged "oh my god!" way, was when another little girl came over and gave Chunk an unexpected, impromptu hug. With both sets of parents standing around, oohing and aahing, it was a sweet moment that made everyone in attendance reconsider that world peace could be a reality in our time, then the little girl broke the hug and slammed Chunk down, pro wrestler style.
What's the right response to that? I scooped him up immediately, trying to calm him down, and the mother of the little girl kept trying to force the little girl to apologize, when really all she did was look very self-satisfied. Was the little girl a hoodlum? Of course not. Kids do weird stuff like that for reasons even they don't get, but it still sucked that it was my (reasonably innocent) child on the floor, skull against the tile, with tears streaming down his face.
Unfortunately for Chunk, the egg was the highlight of his day. He just kept getting more and more sick and by bedtime, we were convinced he had pink eye. So, I called the pediatricians office to talk to their on call nurse and asked if there was anything I could do to help relieve some of his discomfort. Parents who have been around the block a few more times probably know where this is going....
"He needs to be seen within 24 hours. It might not be pink eye, but might be a dangerous infection."
I may have made up the "dangerous" part. I'm not really sure. Every time I talk to a doctor about my son, these words either get used by them or my subconscious. Of course, this conversation exchange happened Saturday night, meaning we were somehow supposed to get him seen on Sunday.
Not to worry! We have a referral! We'll just zip over to the nearby hospital, as directed, and everything will be fine!
Yeah. Well, for people who don't have children (why are you reading this?!), let me explain a few things. "After Hours Pediatric Care" is medical speak for "Emergency Room." And "Urgent Care" is insurance speak for "doesn't really exist, just getting your hopes up." Oh, and "referral" is medical speak for "I'm playing minesweeper while I'm talking to you, but it sounds like I'm actually taking this information down." So, taking Chunk in to get his eyes looked at cost us a $150.00 co-pay.
Turns out it wasn't pink eye or the flu. He has a double-barreled ear infection. The medicine is slowly helping. This is day two and he's acting a lot better. When he woke up this morning, he couldn't open his eyes, but as I said, he's getting better. I guess I owe my coworker, who I affectionally called "Janey Anthraxseed" an apology.
Ultimately, I know I shouldn't get too excited about this stuff. I mean, there's controversy stirring in the "Rock, Paper, Scissors" championships and we really should concentrate on the important stuff in life.