It’s the first day of spring break for Atlanta’s public school system. It’s a beautiful day. The city staged an amazing concert last night. Gas prices have fallen. The pollen count is climbing.
It’s a perfect recipe for disaster in Grady’s emergency ward. Where I find myself waiting again, freaked out among the freaked out and those who freak out others, the “New Scum” of a Spider Jerusalem column, the huddled masses a-yearning.
Friends of mine watched the horror show unfold four months ago, as my mother and I explored the wonders of emergency services at a public hospital. We waited about 26 hours for care; six hours before the urgent care center moved her to Grady’s emergency triage system … for another 19 hours.
I started blogging at hour seven on Facebook. Some people found the attendant observations interesting. I was in talks to publish a long piece about it for the AJC, but things broke down after the editors found it difficult to square my background as an activist against the use of their bully pulpit, my time on their payroll be damned.
To spare my mother the exposure — and myself from weird phone calls from family wondering what the hell I’m doing — I’ll spare you the details of what brought us here again. Suffice it to say that my mother — elderly, working class and uninsured — is substantially less healthy now than when we first found ourselves here in December, and arrived in a state of near collapse. We’re not waiting in the waiting room. She’s already in a room … which should be an indication of the seriousness of the situation.
I find myself incapable of doing anything especially productive, so I’ll write instead. I need a better hobby.