Yesterday morning I heard the words I knew I would hear while in India – it was just a matter of time – and they were the words I was dreading the most.
“Bear needs to go to the emergency room.”
Oh yeah. That sounds great. Do we even know where an emergency room is – and by “an” ER, I do mean the best emergency room in town. Yes the very best. And right now would be good. Thanks.
Off we go to Apollo Hospital. Someone told me that when I moved to India I should set ALL expectations aside. That was frankly the best advice I have received since we decided to move here. (Thanks Loco.)
Let me just put you at ease. Bear was not in danger. This was NOT a respiratory episode. He is very prone to getting bitten by mosquitoes and then he is even more prone to scratching them. In which they get extremely infected. He has a few bites on his arms. He has scratched them. They are infected.
We do not have a doctor here yet. On Monday, there is a meeting at the school where they plan to give us helpful information about how to obtain medical assistance – only, it’s not Monday yet.
Before you think I over-reacted, read on. So Hubby is talking to Bear and giving him some Benadryl. And for whatever reason, Bear leans over the couch and the back of his shirt lifts up. And there is the biggest, reddest, infected rash I have ever seen. Number One Hubby comes to tell me about it and starts by saying – don’t freak out. Yeah, good morning to you too dear.
So Bear comes and shows me – I do not freak out – he is breathing – that is good. There have been times when breathing has been a tremendous struggle for my little bear – I can handle this. This rash is about the size of a small pizza and, come to think of it, that’s about what it looks likes minus the cheese.
Hubby makes some calls. He takes the girls to school. Bear and I head to Apollo hospital. Luckily we have a driver who knows the way.
Two people from Hubby’s office meet us at the hospital and soon Hubby arrives. The people he works with have been tremendously supportive of our journey here. I think that we have had a much easier transition than most people experience because of their amazing help. Delhi is considered a hardship post by most companies.
So anyER, we get dropped off at the ER doors. We go in. It was a good thing I did not have expectations. It does not look like the ER that I am used to (yes, sadly, there is an ER that I am used to) – it is, as we say, different. The facilities looked old and, frankly, a little not so sparkly clean. The best way I can describe it was like the M.A.S.H. tv show – only it was inside. Nothing scared me – I was just glad I had no expectations.
However, the attendants were very helpful and walked us right back. Someone came out of the of “head of ER” office and snuck a quick peek. A phone call was made and we had an appointment with a dermatologist. In an hour and a half. That was different too. I am not used to that kind of helpful service. Thank you.
We went to the dermatologist’s office to wait – it was in the main section of the hospital. Bear said – this part looks better.
I thought – damn, he noticed that too. I agreed with him.
The waiting room had the same feel as the ER. Someone came over and told us that it was our turn. They did not call out Bear’s name. I wonder how they figured out which one he was. Hmmmmmm.
The doctor’s office was very small – desk right beside the exam table. The doctor used to live in Connecticut. He misses the U.S.
Enter a bonding moment – I just happen to miss the U.S. too.
He and hubby talked about hubby’s job – more bonding – we never felt rushed.
But we are here to talk about Bear. Don’t worry, I can direct traffic with the best of them and focused our conversation where it needed to be.
He looked Bear over – he felt very confident that he knew just what was wrong. Bear scratched his mosquito bites and they got infected. And then he was also allergic to some other environmental irritant and got another rash. It got infected. We have to be careful about what he eats and what he uses as toiletries. That should (not) be easy enough. We also got antibiotics, two soaps, and a couple of ointments.
The ride home went like this….
Me: I do not heart Delhi today
Hubby: This could have happened in the U.S.
Me: You are going to say that to me with a straight face
Hubby: He has had problems with mosquito bites before
Me: I do not heart Delhi today.
I try to keep things in perspective and this was not a major event in our lives. Bear is tired, his rash looks better, and he will be just fine. I never doubted that. Yesterday was just a reminder that I am not in my comfort zone. I very much liked my comfort zone. It was comfortable.
The reality check came when we were waiting for our prescriptions. A man came in who works for my husband. His wife was at the hospital in a coma. It seems that the scarf on her sari got caught in the wheel of her husband’s motorcycle and she was thrown to the ground and hit her head. Yes, I am counting my blessings and tomorrow I will have a fun story about another adventure in India.