Being the Sick Patient

I am writing this, sitting in a pharmacy drive thru, my chest is burning, I’m am laboring to breath and I’m having BH contractions. It started yesterday when I went to the OBs office for a run-of-the-mill check up, glucose tolerance testing. I spent the night before coughing and wheezing and honestly wanted to cancel the appointment, but I figured I should just get it over with.

I arrived, spoke with the financial lady who told me that I would need to pay the practice $2,500 for the OB portion despite my insurance coverage, then I proceeded to the patient room but not before the gave me a small bottle containing orange nuclear waste. I had five minutes to chug it down and they would check my blood sugar in one hour. I know this is an age old practice but it seemed a bit ridiculous.

Vomiting ensued.


My doctor came in, looking very worried about contracting whatever illness I was spewing all over his sink and into the emesis bag. He asked if I was having any symptoms. I told him I had been coughing, feeling very fatigued and weak, nausea and vomiting.

Hmm, sounds like pneumonia…

He sent azithromycin to the pharmacy and ran out of there. Never seen legs move that fast. You would think this were a zombie apocalypse.

I vomited more and more.


Splayed on the seat/bench with tears running down my face, holding out a bag half full of vomitus. The nurse tiptoed in and asked if I was ok.

Do I look okay?

She suggested I would feel better if I got home and got in bed. So I packed up my belonging and feebly made my way to the checkout section, where I was ignored for 15 minutes and when I finally opted to just walk out, I was stopped and asked if I saw the doctor and did my glucose tolerance test. Is there no communication in the place?! I vomited up that mess and I was just dismissed, I’m dying, I want to go home. The receptionist looked concerned but confirmed and let me go. I gagged and heaved on the drive home, my husband called me like 15 times, I wish he could just leave work and come home.

That brings me to Walgreens Pharmacy


I called 8am to have my prescription transferred because CVS no longer deals with Blue Cross Blue Shield. And by noon I felt like I had coughed up my right lung and could wait no longer. I called the pharmacy to no avail. Ring tone, busy tone, 3 customers ahead of me. I got out of bed and struggled to my truck and set out. When I approached the front desk, after wilting further I let the pharmacy tech know I have been waiting for antibiotics and being pregnant with pneumonia I couldn’t afford to wait any longer. What I really wanted to say was:

What the hell? I am pregnant and sick and I will sue this pharmacy and this entire corporation if I decompensate any further!!

But response was much more controlled and calm. Now I am in this drive thru line, waiting for my turn. I have been waiting for over 30 minutes.

I am not used to being on this side.

I prescribe medicines, I don’t take them.

I diagnose illness, I don’t suffer them.

I treat pain, I don’t feel it.

I hear symptoms, I don’t experience them.

I call drugs to pharmacy, I don’t pick them up.

I sympathize, now I empathize.

It isn’t easy being sick. Especially for a doctor.


Baby is moving, big baby is dancing, I’m on the couch trying to close my eyes and stay hydrated.

God bless all mothers!


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