Zufelt Family Feb 2015

Zufelt Family Feb 2015

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

First Sick Doctor Visit

Ashlyn has had a fever since Sunday. Normally three to four days of fever wouldn't phase me and we would just wait it out. Only problem was she seemed to be feeling worse and worse each day. I could tell on day two that she was achy because she whimpered when she had to move her limbs or if I had to carry her somewhere. So today, Wednesday morning, I decided to brave the new experience of visiting the doctor. Buoyed up with confidence and advice from others I went on my own and tried it out.

Overall I think it was pretty smooth. I did have trouble finding the Paediatric spot and how to check in but found someone to ask. Can I just say for the millionth time that speaking English is such a blessing. Even if everyone doesn't speak English someone always does in hospitals, airports and markets. So I found the female registration desk and paid 100 SAR ($26) up front for a paediatric consult and asked where to sit and wait.

I took a seat on the chairs. I thought it interesting that the women's waiting rikm was empty at first but then I noticed almost every single woman was accompanied by a man. Hmmm. I waited in the general area - which was just the hallway lined with chairs between the doctor office doors.

We sat for about 45 minutes or so waiting. My receipt said a doctor name and the door was open with no doctor. After about 30 minutes the lady doctor returned to her office and had a patient come in. While we waited our turn on the chairs a Saudi woman in full face cover abaya sent her teenaged son who was in an arm cast off and he returned with two snack sized bags of chips. He gave one to his little sister who was in a stroller and about the same age as Ashlyn. I wasn't paying close attention until she told him to go give one to Ashlyn. She took it hesitantly and I smiled at the woman and told her thank you. She nodded in return and I could see a smile in her eye even if her face was covered. Ashlyn enjoyed the puffy BBQ chips well enough but the taste and texture were a little foreign to her and eventually she wanted the pretzels I had brought. We got those out and she decided in her own to share with "my new friend" sitting in the stroller. The little girl looked at the pretzel and twisted it left and right. It was obviously not something she had before and she looked skeptical. Finally she ate it but her end reaction was akin to Ashlyn and the Saudi chips.

We were called into the doctors office and found out the doctor was a tall woman in a white abaya and beautiful head scarf with a bright yellow floral pattern (all medical women seem to have this dress). Her name was Dr Maha at Mousawat Hospital. She spoke great English and was quite personable. She wasn't overly concerned about what was going on and that made me happy since I did think it was time for a doctor to see Ashlyn but really it was sort of a dry run test of "How To" do the medical thing in Saudi. She noted her weight was low and asked about vitamin testing and I confirmed she'd need fully cleared in Singapore for all those concerns. She pointed out I was small so my kids might be too so I told her of my 4 kids I've got 3 little ones.

The end diagnosis was an upper respiratory infection. We walked out with 4 medications of course, just like Singapore. The pharmacy (the female line anyway) was ten steps down the hall so I got everything there for 45 SAR ($12 USD). The pharmacy gal put the sticker labels covering the English instruction and information side so I could read the Arabic. So helpful. Note to self - ask for sticker on other side next time.

Some good news is we have done the mix your own augmentin dozens of times the exact same bottle and the Panadol variety fever reducer is familiar also but next time I'll skip it because it's really just a Tylenol match and I like what I've got at the house. Glad to have a cough syrup for under 6 yr old again so that one made me smile. And nose drops. That's kiddie torture.

One thing that made me laugh was that I was advised, sweetly and gently, by the doctor to potty train. Yep. After we settle here in our routine it's on the agenda. Too much transition for August or September to add potty training to the list. She already lived without daddy since April, lost Gina in June, lived out of suitcases for 8-10 weeks moving houses every week, moved counties and houses, got her dad back in her life again and started her own school. As bad as I want it done it's enough to do for a little girl right now. 

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