Beck’s Diary 3 (Valium & Seamless)

It’s a long story and I may have covered it already. But it does have it’s twists and turns so here goes:

Valium, also known as diazepam – the taking of – runs in my family which is riddled with phobias and various types of anxiety. I had various odd anxieties most of my life. Not the usual ones: I love heights. I feel peaceful in a two passenger plane sitting near the pilot.

If you ever need someone to climb a metal scaffold in the middle of a thunderstorm to steady an HDMI light during a shoot; I’d be the one to do it.

On the other hand I have phobias that can attack in the craziest places. I went out to lunch with my sister about 20 years ago, and when I looked down at the platter, there was something about the design that caused me to freak out. No, I don’t remember what it was, whether it was the way the food looked, or the plate or what, but I turned to my sister who also suffers from anxiety attacks – and said – I’ve got to get out of here. This plate, something about it is freaking me out.

We just got up. Walked out. And never came back.

And no, nothing like that ever happened again.

I had a phobia of hospitals but had only been there as a visitor, usually to see my mother, but just walking by a hospital gave me the creeps. Sometimes. I would cross the street so as not to walk on the same side as Montifoire.

But once I was admitted to the hospital for the first time after the first stroke, within a day I was sort of liking it. I enjoyed the attention, and even the funny things the nurses did, especially when they were outside the room and gabbing among themselves.

They really became my friends. The doctors and interns came by and did their rounds every few days but it was the nurses that took care of you.

Anyway, long story short, most of my phobias disappeared and I was taking Valium for back spasms. And it worked.

When I got to Vista Castle, after a long while and a lot of paperwork, I was able to get control of my own medication, altho it was still going through the pharmacy the Castle used.

The protocol (if you want to call it that) was that when you had five days of meds left, you went down to the Wellness Center around 11 am (after the morning med rush) and informed the nurse to order the meds.

Which is exactly what I did. However the nurse at the main desk really ignored me. I said I only have five days of diazepam left so could you re-order it. She just looked at me. No nodding, no response.

After a repeat request from me, she nodded and said okay.

I thought at the time, jeez. Nothing in writing so I can prove I asked her. I didn’t see her put anything in the computer.

Three or four days later, I went back to see if the order had a) been requested, b) arrived. At this point it was Friday .

Rather than saying she forgot to order it, she looked at me like I was another pain in the ass, picked up the phone. Called the Castle’s pharmacy and said there was no order placed.

That they would place the order with the Castle Doctor, and it would be here tomorrow.

The next day, I returned around noon and the nurse (of course this was the weekend shift) didn’t know anything about it. Had she received anything from the pharmacy? Yes, but she wasn’t allowed to open those bags.

Where’s the nurse in charge?

She’s at lunch.

Do you know when she’ll be back?

No. But her name is Stella. Knock on her door around the corner.

I go around the corner. At this point, pretty much everything is hurting me. But I knock on the door. I can hear Stella laughing with a friend on the phone. She must hear me.

I get out of my rollator and start banging on the door.

No response. Just more gossipy laughter.

The first nurse from the Wellness Center comes out to see what the banging is all about.

I tell her Stella won’t open the door.

She tells me to go back to my room.

No way. I say I’ll just sit here until Stella comes out.

The nurse shrugs her shoulders and goes back to Wellness.

So I sit on my rollator for 15 minutes until finally the door opens and Stella barks at me.

Was that you banging! Whadya want?

And I tell her the story and she says you were supposed to tell M. 5 days in advance.

Yeah, I know. I did.

Alright. Follow me. Into the Wellness Center. She picks up the phone and calls the pharmacy. Yes, it turns out. The order which Dr. P (no one can say his name) placed was sent to my old pharmacy on 82nd street.

The nurse and the Castle pharmacist get into some byzantine plan to transfer it to the castle and I interrupt and say, why don’t I just call them and have it delivered here.

And she thinks that’s an idea. So I call my old pharmacy, a small store that I have been using for 25 years, talk to the main guy and give him my new address. He’ll have it delivered within an hour. And sure enough it is.

So I call Sinai and tell them to change my pharmacy back to the old one which they still have on file.

Then I place an order with myChart through my PCP with plenty of time to spare. And bypass the whole mixed up ship that sails somehow here.

Previously, I had started using Seamless again, and I just opened up FreshDirect, and my plan is to bypass these people wherever possible.

Published by Dave

My name is David Beckerman. I am a fine art photographer working in New York City. Or I was before I had two strokes. I now write from a Nursing Home.

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