Monday, February 11, 2019

Week 286: Nothing to go on

At least once per month (week/day/hour), I tell myself that I am officially giving up on ever making a plan about anything. But, the planning instinct is strong within me, so moments after resolving to no longer attempt to plan, I start planning again. This is where planning got me over the past 10 days or so:

1. I planned to have Lime's dentist appointment on January 30, but it was cancelled due to the polar vortex.

2. The next available date they had was the morning of February 6. Without looking at the calendar, I accepted.

3. I realized after consulting the calendar that Lemon had clinic on the morning of the 6th.

4. I cancelled the dentist appointment and took their next available, which was in mid-March.

5. On the morning of Wednesday the 6th, the clinic called me saying our nurse practitioner had a family emergency and they had to cancel our appointment. Sigh. Net of zero children receiving scheduled medical care. Now we're going March 6. More time to gain/lose weight I suppose?

6. I had scheduled Lemon to do his multiple breath washout test for his clinical study at 11 a.m. on Friday the 8th, since that was a day on which he was not supposed to have school, and I was not supposed to have any important phone calls for work.

7. The no-school day was replaced with a school day due to so many days off for the polar vortex (see above). And, some changes at work meant that the 11 a.m. phone call went from being optional to mandatory. Perfect. I begged off of the 11 a.m. call, figuring it would be no trouble to make the other mandatory call of the day at 1 p.m. given that the test was supposed to take an hour.

8. Thinking that the test started at 11 a.m. and would only take an hour I planned (you see the problem, right?) to also quickly run Lemon over to the lab afterwards to finally have his blood drawn for his liver tests. I had the lidocaine cream, Saran wrap and tape in my coat pocket to get him ready while the breathing test was going on (more planning, very bad).

9. I also planned (I am incorrigible) to take him to McDonald's when all this was done as a reward.


10. We got to the clinic right on time for the multiple breath
washout test. The test basically involves biting down on a thing that looks like the end of a snorkel and breathing through it. The only trick is to do all the breathing through one's mouth, so that all the breaths go through the apparatus and can be measured by various sensors. The solution: a nose clip, to make sure you don't accidentally breathe in or out
through the nose during the test.

11. Unfortunately, the 3 staff people involved in administering the test were clearly long-term members of Team Zero Planning because, although this is the pulmonary function lab at a children's hospital and the test subject was known to be 5 years old, NONE OF THEM BROUGHT ANY CHILD-SIZED NOSE CLIPS TO THE TEST.

12. We spent a very substantial number of minutes trying to retrofit one of the adult sized ones so it would stay on Lemon's nose. We tried having me hold his nose with my fingers, but then he couldn't see the videos playing on my phone in my other hand (because Team Zero Planning had failed to load the tablet they have FOR THIS EXACT PURPOSE with any videos that might remotely hold the attention of a 5-year-old.).

13. The lead guy who was administering the test then offered that, in a specific drawer of a specific cart located in a specific room in a distant part of the hospital, he had a variety of nose clips, some of which might potentially work.

14. One of the other people was then dispatched to retrieve the above. Much time passed as this other random person attempted to locate the specific room/cart/drawer.

15. The correct nose clips arrived, Lemon did 3 good trials of the test in about 15 minutes, and we were done. It only took 1.5 hours (!?!?).

16. I wasn't about to not take him to McDonald's given that a) he'd been very good, and b) he needed to eat lunch before going back to school. So we scrapped the idea of the lab and went to McDonald's, and I managed to convince him to eat his lunch at an unusual rate of speed (for him) so that I dropped him off at school at 12:59:57 or thereabouts, and then dialed into my work phone call at 1pm. I drove home, but realized that I didn't want to risk going to my downstairs office because my phone almost always drops calls when I walk into my own house (technology, we call this).

17. So, instead of doing my call from my office on the land line, I did it with my cellphone from my car, parked in the garage. Not wanting to asphyxiate myself, I turned off the engine, and the temperature in the car rapidly equilibrated with the outside world at around 8F. Also I didn't have a notepad, so I took notes (wearing gloves) on the back of the envelope containing the $50 we received for Lemon participating in this aspect of the study.

18. We are supposed to get 10 inches of snow overnight.

19. I give up.

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