Thursday, February 17, 2011

Code Silver

#5 started complaining of ear pain yesterday.  I don't mean just complaining, I should have said crying.  We gave him some Tylenol and put some drops of warm olive oil and a piece of cotton ball in it.  I think these things helped a little, but it was a very tear-filled evening.  Even in the middle of the night, he woke and cried to tell us how much it hurt.

We got in to see a nurse practitioner at Kaiser just before 11am.  She looked and sure enough--an ear infection.  She said it was as red as the red on his shoes--candy apple red.

So, I'm just now seeing the tender mercy in this whole thing....

When she checked his record at the beginning of the appointment, the nurse practitioner noticed that #5 hadn't had his flu shot yet.  Would he like to have one?  I replied with yes; although, I got to thinking, "What's the point?  Flu season's almost over," but all she heard was "Yes."

When the appointment was over, she gave us our prescription papers and I started to head out to the upstairs lobby, but the nurse practitioner quickly came out and said, "Oh, we forgot to give him his flu shot.  Why don't you go down and start the process.  Turn it in, and come back up."  The pharmacy is near the main lobby where everyone checks in when they first enter the clinic.

We went downstairs and turned it in then we went back upstairs.  The physicians assistant didn't see us return, so we were waiting for a little while.  As we waited, I started hearing, "Code silver.  Main check in.  Special check in required."  I heard it repeated a number of times over the P.A. system.  I didn't think much of it.  Just like in the hospital, when you hear "code blue" or "code red" it means someone's having a heart attack or some other kind of emergency.  I just knew someone was having a problem.

The physician's assistant walked past our room, saw us in it and said, "Oh, I didn't know you were back.  I'll get that ready for you," and walked out again.

Within a few minutes, both physician's assistants came into the hallway.  One looked a little shaken up.  I said, "You know, I've got to go pick up my son, so I think we'll not do the flu shot."  The unshaken one said, "You can't go now, we're in lock down."  Just then, the shaken one locked the door to the hallway.

The shaken one explained that they had just been "yelled at" my their manager to get behind the door.  They then looked up the code.  It meant there was someone with a weapon in the building.

While we waited, not knowing what exactly was going on--there were no loud noises.  From time to time, there were various people called over the intercom system.  They were told to call various extensions.  That was about it.  I called my friend who had picked #6 up from preschool to tell her what was going on.  Her reaction was classic, kind of a nervous, "Man, Julie, never a dull moment, huh?"  How true!

When all was clear, after about five to ten minutes, I went down to get our prescription.  I can't say I was feeling completely safe, as I walked down the stairs. As I walked into the pharmacy, I wondered about the people there and how they'd hidden.  They were so close to the scene of the action.  I know there are doors on one side of the pharmacy but not on the other, and there is kind of a smokey glass that runs around the entire room.  I'm so thankful we weren't there when this all happened.

I'm thankful for the mix up about the flu shot so that I didn't have to be scared for my little kids (I had #s 5 and 7 with me).  Where we were, the nurses got out crayons and coloring books for the kids to keep them entertained.  We were in the best possible place we could have been.

Not knowing what the weapon was, I got to thinking that it could even have been a bomb.  So glad to be home this afternoon.  Glad for Kaiser's ability to protect their patients.  Grateful that yet again, God has continued to take care of us--not just that we were safe, but that we were in a good place.  I don't know if my little ones even knew what was going on during all this.

Funny, on the way into the clinic's parking lot, we were listening to the Beatles.  #5 asked me, "Are all the Beatles dead?"  I very briefly explained about John Lennon and how there are just some crazy people in this world.  During our "lock down" time, #5 once again asked about John Lennon.  Maybe he had more understanding than I think he did.


Anonymous said...

oh my goodness Julie! that would have been so scary!!!!!!!! i would have probably peed my pants. i'm glad you are all ok and nothing bad came of all that!

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