Life goes on for this golden girl


Diagnosed on February 29, and still, nothing has been done. I’ve called myself “the golden girl” for the past week, jokingly. Despite the obvious yellow color, I’m not overly sick; just uncomfortable now and then. And tired.

I figured I’d hear something on Monday. For me, Mondays are productive. I get organized, I tie up loose ends, I plan out what to do when. Mondays are also the busiest days of the week in the office, so the day flew by. It wasn’t until the day was done that I realized UAMS didn’t call and didn’t schedule the ERCP. It wasn’t until Wednesday that I had the time to call the surgeon’s office.

The sweetheart of a nurse was surprised when I told her I was still sitting and waiting. She’d call down there, then call me back, and she did a few hours later.

“I’m so frustrated,” she said. “All this time, I’ve been referring patients there with no problem. This time, they decided I was referring all wrong, so I had to refer you again.” There was an implied promise to have the procedure scheduled by the end of the day.

“I’m confused,” I said. “I thought this was a pretty important thing to have done ASAP, or is it not that bad?”

Yes, the doctor thinks it’s bad, and yes, it has to be done soon. “Are you itchy yet?” Well, I wasn’t – until she asked me. But no, I’m not itchy yet.

Other options? Sure – if I had $1,000 up front, I could have it done at Baptist Medical. Finally, the nurse told me to bring a book and go to the ER at UAMS when I’m bad again. They’d have to do the ERCP then. They can’t schedule me, and I’m supposed to trust them to do the procedure right?

Will the surgeon schedule and remove my gallbladder before the ERCP? Give me a light at the end of my tunnel, I said, and maybe he can eyeball things when he’s in there to see if that ERCP really is necessary. No, it doesn’t work that way, but she’d ask and call me back.

I felt pretty good after that conversation, pretty assured that things were moving forward. But, she never called me back.

So much for feeling better.

In the meantime, life goes on. Lawmakers have thrown a major wrench in things at the worst possible time, which means work will be intense starting April 1. It’s been so warm that we’ve had the AC running, and we’ve mowed the lawn already. Odin had his feet trimmed yesterday and is ready to ride. I’m not.

Then again, maybe I will go ahead and ride, golden color and all. Life goes on.
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