Last night while I was sweating through my daily hour-long commute in bumper to bumper traffic, my husband calls to let me know that Huck has an outrageous ear ache.


I am immediately assessing the logistical nightmare involved. A rough night of no sleep is all but guaranteed unless we confront the offending ear head-on. (pun intended)

So, I rush home and grab a healthy snack and rush Huck to the nearest urgent care clinic. As I drive, I am doing the parental reach-around, shuttling hunks of banana to the backseat.

I’m wiping banana gunk on my seat and trying to assuage his fears by scream-singing Frozen songs.

At the doctor’s office, he holds it together while I discuss paperwork with the snippy, condescending bitch who runs the front desk.

For some reason it’s not until I am actually filling out paperwork with Huck on my lap that it sinks in that he is, INDEED, inside a doctor’s office.

He starts to cry.

It escalates.

He’s blowing snot bubbles and growling underneath the sobs.

Now begins the humiliating struggle to get him to calm down.

I bounce him on my lap, hold him and say “shhhh, it will be okay.” The people in the waiting room are giving the “Oh, poor baby, sweet mommy” looks.

Not working, so I move on to offering up games on my phone.

He starts gurgling, “I don’t want games toooo.” (Suddenly, everything he says is followed by the word “too.”)

I start showing him pictures on my phone and asking him to tell me who it is.

“I want Alma toooo!” “I want daddy toooo!” “I wanna go home toooo!”

The tension in the room is escalating, the looks far less sympathetic.

The crying/yelling is perpetual.

I offer up mandarin oranges, magazines, videos on my phone, all to no avail.

People are grumbling now, shifting awkwardly in their seats. I’m starting to appear to be a really ineffective comforter.

I take him outside and he calms down. He starts looking at cars, flags, signs… and stops crying.

I start… SWEATING.


We go back in and… he bursts into tears.

I try reasoning with him. “We have to see the doctor to get medicine so your ear won’t hurt anymore.” That seems to remind him about the pain and the yelling grows more passionate.

Even the nasty bitch on the desk is trying to help now, offering up cartoons on TV…. anything to make him shut up.

You know what would’ve made him shut up? Not making us wait an hour and a half to see a f&*ing doctor!

When we finally make it into the room where my son will be seen, it’s another 30 minutes of spastic non-stop sobbing.

I offer him tongue depressors to play with, cotton balls, suggest he write on the crinkly, keep your bottom clean paper.

paper bed

Nothing works. Everything is followed by an irritated “I don’t wanna (insert suggestion here) tooooo!”

I am rocking my little weapon of mass destruction fervently, begging him to tell me what’s wrong. He calms down enough to avoid explosion and mass casualties, but he can’t even talk he’s so beside himself.

huck bomb

I end up playing Frozen singalong videos on Youtube during which he intermittently ceases screaming. I have no doubt that people outside the room were yucking it up listening to me sing while my son continued to cry.

They offered him a juice box. You know what his response was.

The Doctor finally arrives, accidentally calls my son by his last name and swoops in to check his ears.

His hands are shaking violently. He says, It’s hard with a moving target.” (Yeah, my son is sitting perfectly still. He’s not the problem.) Of course I end up with the one urgent care physician in all of Tampa Bay with severe Parkinson’s.

I have to suggest to him the medication my son requires and he promises to call it in to our pharmacy right away.

That night, we call the pharmacy and it was never called in. The urgent care clinic is closed. We have no medication. I am buying beer on the way home. This was supposed to be my workout day. Can you lose lbs through severe stress and trauma?

There is a chance that suffering through the worst doctor’s visit ever had its reward in the end. Huck was so exhausted from all of that crying that he drank milk, took Motrin and some ear drops and NEARLY slept through the night.


We survived the crappy clinic and all we got was this lousy sticker.