Friday, January 24, 2014

So I Panicked

It was an all around bad day.

I had a plan.  Pick up meds at the pharmacy, get gas, pick up milk and tomato soup at the dollar store, then go to the food pantry to get produce. 

The local food pantry I go to has produce once a month.  Last month I got about a hundred organic bananas.  Well, OK, it was just a dozen or so.  But that's a lot for one person.  I also got corn on the cob, oranges, yogurt and cottage cheese.  I know, yogurt and cottage cheese are not produce.  But I got yogurt last month and the month before and I was hoping to get more today.  I was also hoping for apples.

So I went to the pharmacy, where I found my doctor had failed to call in refills for my Tramadol and Flexeril, and where the pharmacy tech tried to charge me a copay for my Miralax, when I think Medicaid should have paid that copay for me.  I asked the pharmacy tech why Medicaid didn't pay it and she said they paid for more of the cost.  I said no, that would have been Medicare that paid for most of it.  Medicare is my primary, Medicaid is my secondary.  Shouldn't she know that Medicare and Medicaid are not the same things?  Surely she has many other customers that have Medicare and Medicaid.  So she said she'd bill Medicaid and I said I'd call my doctor's office and come back later.

On the way to the gas station, I called the doctor's office.  I spoke with his medical assistant who said, "I think he's working on those refills today."  What does that mean?  I have no clue what that means.  What is there to work on?  It's a phone call to the pharmacy.  Might take 90 seconds.  So I asked her what that meant and pointed out that I will be out of those meds at the end of the day.

Now, I called about those refills on Wednesday, two days before I would run out.  I thought two days seemed like ample time for someone at the doctor's office to find 90 seconds to make a quick phone call.  I didn't call sooner than that because I figured they would not want to call in refills if I still have a lot of pills left.  Plus, I figured my insurance wouldn't pay for the refills if I tried to get them too soon.

The MA seemed annoyed and said she would call me back.

And then I panicked.  What if they didn't call in the refills?  I started thinking of how much pain I'd be in all weekend.  My right arm started hurting more just thinking about it.  I recognized that, I realized that my anxiety was going to make the pain worse.  I cried a little bit.  I took some anxiety meds.  I reminded myself that the anticipation of pain makes pain worse.  I reminded myself that the pain wasn't too bad right then so I needed to focus on that, not on how much it might hurt later.

The panic receded and I went on to the dollar store.

Then I went to the food pantry and found they were closed.  There was a sign on the gate that said, "Sorry we are closed today."  I have no clue why.  I was there Monday for my regular groceries and the woman at the desk reminded me that Friday was produce day.  I was really disappointed.  I had been really looking forward to the yogurt I hoped I would get. 

And I was counting on that food.  Before I set out to do my errands I had carefully planned what to get at the dollar store and how much gas to put into my car, because money is that tight right now.  You know, I was working out, well, I have $7 available on my credit card and $12 in my checking account and $9 left on this gift card, so I can use the credit card for the gas and with the gift card I can buy two gallons of milk and two cans of tomato soup and a package of dog treats for Isaac, like that.  No produce at the food pantry totally messed up my plan.

I'm gonna call them Monday and see if maybe they will be doing produce on a different day.

Shortly after I got home, the MA from the doctor's office called and said the refills would be called in by the end of the day.  I plan to go back to the pharmacy tomorrow.  Hopefully it's all been taken care of.  It was a rotten day.

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