Sunday, October 26, 2008

Shi Shi

Here in Hawaii, they call pee "shi shi" (pronounced shee shee). I think it has Japanese origins, as do so many cultural details here in Hawaii (shoyu a.k.a. soy sauce on every table, for example). We don't use the term shi shi - hell, I still call Lucy's entire private area her butt because I don't feel like getting into the specifics with her. But enough on the fascinating and varied melting pot culture of Hawaii. Let's talk urine.

Yesterday, after I got home from work, when she announced that it hurt when she went pee, my alarm bells went off. Any woman will tell you, that if it hurts to pee, you are headed down a slippery slope. Within 12 hours you could find yourself with a full-blown kidney infection, and feeling like you just might die. Which would be a blessing, because the pain is incredible, and you are peeing every 5 minutes. So when Lucy said it hurt to pee - I paid attention.

"Where does it hurt ?"

"Does your belly hurt too ?"

"Do you feel cold ? Hot ?"

"Have you had water to drink today ?"

She seemed OK, so I decided to just keep an eye on things. But an hour later, she was in the bathroom, saying that it hurt when she peed. Crap. She was crying, and refused to go see the doctor without mommy AND daddy. So, I told her that if she went to the doctor, she would get yummy pink medicine. She perked right up. Pink medicine ? Well, why didn't you say so ? I put her in her footie pajamas and we all drove to town seeking medical assistance and a bottle of antibiotics for what was obviously brewing in her little system. We pulled into the clinic parking lot, and it was suspiciously empty. And the clinic was dark. And closed. And BOY WAS I PISSED. This meant that if we wanted her to be seen, we would have to go to the emergency room of the one hospital on island - a location I try to avoid whenever possible. Plus, I hate going to the ER if it isn't a blood and guts, near death emergency ANYWAY. I always feel guilty for being there - but there really is no other option. So we went. And waited. Sometimes you can get in and out really fast - which is great. Sometimes, you get screwed. And of course, on a Saturday night, with both parents and both kids, we got royally screwed.

It started out so well. The ER has just been completely renovated, so we walked into a startlingly clean, bright room, with a flat screen TV and lots of new chairs and magazines. Nice. I walked right up to someone in scrubs and got a specimen cup to catch a specimen while we waited for the triage nurse who would start the registration process - so by the time we registered, I had a pee sample, and was clutching ID, insurance and credit cards. I was ready to get the hell out of there. Plus, there was a very intense baseball game on TV, and the entire waiting room was hooting and hollering. Weird. It was like being in a sports bar.

The triage nurse was psyched that I already had a specimen. "How did you get THAT ?" she asked, pointing at the cup. I explained that I had just asked for one, and she smiled - "Good Job." I smiled too - we were a team ! We were going to work together to get us the hell out of there ! Before someone with a serious blood and guts emergency showed up and freaked out the kids ! Yee haw !

I should not have gotten so excited.

2 hours later, we were shivering and blue-lipped in the examining room, still waiting for the doctor. No flat screen TV, no magazines, no vending machines......just a gurney and a long wait - and it was after 9pm. This was not good. Lucy started to lose it a little bit. I started to lose it a little bit. Sami and Max came in from the waiting room to find out what the hell was going on, and Lucy lost it completely. Max wanted to go back out where there was TV, but first, he wanted a rubber glove.

Jesus H.

Lucy clung to Daddy. I figured since he started the drama by coming back there, he could sit back there and freeze for a while. I would happily go watch the flat screen TV and read a magazine. In warmth and comfort.

It was not to be.

10 minutes later, the door swung open, and there was Sam, holding a sobbing, blotchy Lucy. He pointed at me, and waggled his finger. I pointed to myself. ME?! Why ME ?! Dude, you got yourself into this, everything was copacetic until you came back there. Not my fault. Nope. No way. I got the point, and the re-waggle.


So I got up, and walked over.

"What?" I hissed.

"She has a bladder infection."

"No shit."

"She won't take the medicine."

I stared at him.

How could he have fucked up the pink medicine ? It's PINK ! It tastes like bubble gum ! This is the easiest thing ever in the world to get her to drink!!!!!!

So I grabbed Lucy, and marched back to the examining room. There was the cup of pink medicine. "Baby, this is the yummy pink bubble gum medicine." She cried harder. "You just have to drink this medicine, and then we can go HOME." Quiet. "Please drink this so we can go home." The crying begins again. "I want a cheeseburger."

Slowly, oh so slowly, I explained. Drink the pink medicine. We can LEAVE. I will buy you a cheeseburger - but I cannot do that in the ER. We need to LEAVE. And we cannot LEAVE until you drink the pink medicine. So she grabbed the cup, threw back her head, took the shooter, and we got the hell out of there.

As I emerged from the double doors, clutching a sleepy toddler, a bottle of pink medicine, and reams of paperwork (oh, the trees that were sacrificed) I felt triumphant.

Lucy saw Sami and announced "I was brave !"

He snorted and rolled his eyes. She started sobbing. I tried not to punch him right in the ER.

We finally got home and got the babies in bed, and it's done, and we don't have to go back there until the next late night infection kicks our ass. Next time I am bringing a parka and a basket of food. And maybe a sippy cup of wine. For me, of course.

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