Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Patience with a little umph (and how to make eraser earrings)

Have you ever heard the saying, "Patience is a virtue?" I used to hate it when adults told me that as a child, but now I understand what they meant. I do have patience in most cases, but I know when enough is enough. Sometimes you have to bark. But my voice is like a whisper in the library, even when I'm mad. Speaking up can be challenging for me.

Twice this week I have been put to the test and it's only Wednesday.

Start with this kind of eraser to make the earrings (they come in all colors)
Monday morning Nicholas stuck a piece of an eraser in his ear. Some of the boys had been making earring hoops out of the ends of those pointy pink erasers. They cut a bit of the circular end and then slit each O; voila- perfect fit. Nicholas came out of school last Friday wearing them. I thought, "How cute!"

I'm trying out the newest fashion trend- eraser hoops.

The "cuteness" of eraser earrings was the furthest thing from my mind when I found out what had happened. I was not very happy.

My anger quickly turned to panic. Nicholas had tubes in his ear as a baby. He's prone to ear infections. I wanted that sucker out and fast. I picked him up from school and we zoomed over to the neighborhood walk-in clinic. Had I called the pediatrician, we would have had to drive clear across town and wait for hours WHILE exposing ourselves to yucky kid germs. Surely this was the easier, softer way.

Guess what? It wasn't. We had to wait for an hour anyway and the doctor completely missed the mark. He looked inside Nicholas' ear and said all he could see was wax. Then he proceeded to wash his ear out, which caused a few winces from my poor sweet boy. After all that rigmarole, the Quack Shack said he had an ear infection and that his ear drum would probably bleed. I looked deep in his ear and saw the drum, but I still wasn't satisfied. Nicholas, on the other hand, was ecstatic because the doctor had gotten him off the hook.

When we went to pick up Andrew (it was a half-day), the nurse and I peeked in Nicholas' ear once again. I felt like Nancy Drew looking for a clue. And we found one. There in plain view was the pink gob.

What the ENT pulled out of Nicholas' ear

I was able to get Nicholas in with the ENT who took the eraser out with no problem. He doesn't even have an infection; just irritation. Talk about patience. Monday required a lot.

Today I went to the post office to mail a friend a signed copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Troubled Times. I gloated as I weighed the package and printed out the postage while the others waited in lunch-hour lines. I knew I had finally figured out how to make the postal system workable. Before Christmas, too! That is until I discovered I couldn't just slip the package through the self-serve slot; it was too big. The Flustered Blonde Lady behind the counter, who I think was quite rude, told me I had to get in the back of the line so she could approve it. I'm so sure! No wonder the post office is in trouble. It certainly was with me.

Feeling impatient and miffed, I left and ran an errand. When I went back, two ladies were now behind the counter. I waited behind the five people in front of me (which was nothing compared to earlier) and walked over to the Much Nicer Lady when it was my turn. I noticed Flustered Blonde Lady glance my way as I shared my negative experience with Much Nicer Lady. She told me that sometimes they get bombarded with so many customers at once that... blah, blah, blah. I still don't think I should have to go through the line if I do it myself. It's like going through the check-out line at a grocery store to make sure you rang up your items correctly at the self-service. Don't you think?

In both incidents, I felt like I had to say something. On Monday I called the Quack Shack and told them they had been wrong, that the doctor wasted our time and money. They promised to credit our card for the co-pay. Of course, you already know I spoke up today. Sometimes you have to, but I always feel a little guilty. Patience IS a virtue after all; and so is defending what is right.


Jeni said...

Oh my goodness gracious Laurie.... Thank God for not only your patience, but also your persistence. Great job mommy!! xo

Ed Pilolla said...

it's tough in these moments because we feel we have suffered injustice. and then one injustice might make it easier to feel another. that's how i feel. if i start having a bad day, things can cascade. the doctor really screwed up. it happens. but you didn't do the blind faith in the doctor thing and that's good. glad your boy is doing better.