Ding an sich

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

I've been a bad blogger and I would apologize if I felt more guilt...but I don't. I'm too busy; teaching a summer class, trying to reorganize my syllabi, hooking a rug and keeping up with the vegetables from the CSA.  Did I mention the cleaning? Six months worth of cleaning and unpacking things still in storage boxes from our move last year.

I have some stories, but they aren't ready to be told. I have to wait until they are ready, but they rattle around...I promise.

Emily is off to camp again - 2 weeks away, two days home, 2 weeks away again. This allowed me to purge the unholy entity that had become her room. This photo doesn't even represent the room at it's worst - This was day TWO into cleaning - Quelle Horreur:

My first year of professoring has been pretty great. My student evals were nearly perfect; unheard of for a first year faculty. I like my colleagues and I see great growth potential here. I am encouraged and allowed to be Dawn - with all her Dawn-ness. This is a tremendous gift and one I do not take lightly. 

Emily has had a good year, making friends and settling in nicely. She is exotic and worldly in our new home. She looks forward through high school and tells me she wants to study history in university someday. Seeing as I had a full on anxiety attack when she was five and first received the brain damage and ADHD diagnosis, envisioning her living in my basement until she was 40 as I had clearly ruined her life - these words from my child bring hope and a tiny easement of guilt. 

In June, she asked if she could try medication for her ADHD again. She'd been on medication when she was 6 through age 7 when Terrance made the executive decision to take her off of them. At 15, she was asking for the opportunity to try them again. Terrance objected, then said maybe, then objected again. 

While I understand his concern, I also know that 15 year olds with ADHD will turn to other things to self medicate. I didn't want that for her. If she was asking, I felt like we needed to support her. We needed to allow her to say if it helped or not, to be in charge of her own feedback system. We started out slow at the end of the school year, a low stakes time to try a medication. This allows us the summer for her to fully understand what being on the medication did and what it didn't do. It doesn't, for instance, suddenly make her a math whiz. It does slow down her speech and help her organizational skills.

Adderall, for those of you not in the know, is a highly controlled medication. As in they practically frisk you and do a retina scan when you get the script. You get your 30 day supply and you don't refill until Day 29. You hand carry original scripts on special paper to the pharmacy. There is no "calling in a refill" to the pharmacy.  I half expect to be robbed by tweekers everytime we pick this shit up.

In my uber-parent camp planning glory, I had secured authentic refill scripts in late June. I knew that the refills would fall right between her camp days and I had believed I was good to go. We'd pick Emily up on Friday afternoon, refill her meds on Saturday and she'd be off to camp 2 on Sunday at 9 a.m.  My shit was tight. 

This found me, at noon last Saturday, standing in my pharmacy waiting for her refill. Except, it wasn't ready. Because they weren't allowed to refill it until July 22nd. A full day after she traveled 5 hours north. The pharmacist was apologetic. They weren't allowed to refill early unless a doctor authorized it. However, it was Saturday and there were no doctors in the office. I sighed, deeply. Surely there must be a way to make this work. 

The pharmacist explains that there is a nurse advisor who can perhaps get the doctor on call to authorize the day early refill. I sigh again. I mentally put on my armor and call the nurse advisor.

Now, I've been around medical people for a long time. I know what they are going to ask and how to explain exactly what you need. This nurse advisor was not following the script. First, she told me it was impossible. The doctor on call wasn't going to call in the refill. Then she asked if there was any way I could wait and get the refill on Monday. 

No. I couldn't. Emily would be 5 hours away. 

Could I send the script with Emily and have someone fill it where she was going to be?

Um, Hell No. I wasn't sending an Adderall script with my child and charging a camp counselor with wandering to a pharmacy and picking up a refill. 

Could she just not take her medication? Kids didn't need it in the summer, after all.

And here, my friends, is where the Kracken was unleashed. Get ready...it's coming.

No, I patiently responded. Emily takes her medication every day. She really does not want to go without it, particularly as she is going to be riding horses for 2 weeks.

to which the nurse replied:

"Well, she could just drink a mountain dew and eat a cookie."

~ Can you smell the brimstone? The sulphur? The sound of my leathery demon wings unfurling? My eyes narrow to reptilian slits as the gates of hell open  ~

I pause for a half a second then say: "What did you just say?"

My tone was all it took for Emily to look up at me. The pharmacist, who had been standing at the counter, grew wide eyed and looked at Emily who just shook her head. 

"Did you just suggest that instead of taking her medication, my child should drink a mountain dew and eat a cookie?"

The nurse repeated herself. I exhaled and said "That was incredibly inappropriate. We are talking about the matter of a refill ONE DAY early. Her doctor has already given us the scripts, which are on file. I'm not asking for something she isn't taking and your suggestion that I tell her camp to treat a neurochemical medical condition with soda and a cookie is beyond inappropriate."

The pharmacist is just staring at me from behind her counter. I no longer see Emily and have no perception of the people around me. My crosshairs are firmly fixed and I am moving in for the kill.

The doctor on call approved the early refill within ten minutes. 

As the pharmacist-supervisor handed me the bottle he leaned it and said: "Did she tell you to treat ADHD with mountain dew and a cookie?"

I exhaled hard through my nose, pushing my demon bullish breath out of my body. "Yeah", I said. My nostrils flare, slightly.

He shakes his head and chuckles softly, handing me the bottle of pills. 

2 Baleful Regards:

Amy W said...

I wasn't diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia until I was 36 years old. Yet, I displayed the symptoms from an early age. Although I can't go back and change the past and regret does nothing, I wish that I had been diagnosed earlier and had been put on medication. Being able to handle by ADHD with medication has changed my world. Good to hear that you are fighting for your child's health and well being.

Anonymous said...

Good for you! I was almost 27 when I was finally diagnosed and treated. I take Strattera, and there are times I consider slipping it in other peoples coffee around me. The world would truly be a much better place if more people were on this drug. I had my doctor in the Bronx call in a script to a CVS 6 hours away in the Adirondacks. I wasn't willing to go 3 days without it. I can't begin to describe how annoying it is when the 'tards of the world say ADHD isn't real and kids/people shouldn't be medicated for it. Apparently those are the ones that need it most. Life would have been so much happier if I had been treated as an adolescent and teen. I get so annoyed when I think back about the worthless 4th grade nun who used to make fun of those of us that would get caught day dreaming and make everyone sing "Beautiful Dreamer" to get our attention back to the classroom. God forbid she actually know what she's doing and know how to see the signs. As far as I'm concerned, Eli Lilly deserve a Nobel prize for atomoxetine.

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