Monday, March 19, 2012

What’s the problem to which this is a solution?

E has flu, asthma, bronchitis, asthmatic bronchitis. Well, the good doctor can’t quite decide. All we do know is that the little man is not at all well and that – thanks to those crazy Brazilian laws which allow cheap generic copies to be made of super expensive patented drugs, every time I return from the surgery the house is stocked up with a bucket-load of complicated new medication and assorted paraphernalia: nebulizers, inhalers, cranial suppositories (I made that last one up). All for free and all faster than you can say d-r-u-g r-e-s-i-s-t-a-n-t s-u-p-e-r-b-u-g.

He had been in a funk since the last doctor's visit a week ago, when he was told that:
  1. He’ll have to use an inhaler for the rest of his life (“FOR-EVER?” I mouthed silently back at the doctor, incredulously).
  2. He won’t be able to play football until the asthma calms down.
I glanced across as the doctor delivered the prognosis with all the authority of Moses descending Mount Sinai with the freshly-carved stone tablets in hand, and could almost read the expression on E’s face: kill me now.

It was with some anxiety therefore that we returned this morning. What fun would he prohibit now in the interests of good health? PlayStation? UNO cards? After more listening and probing it was decided that he could now return to the pitch as long as he had a session with the breathing apparatus before and after.

E jumped to his feet and clutched my right arm with both hands, his face beaming with the widest smile.

Hope, restored.

Oh, and if you were wondering, he was prescribed a further dose of antibiotics (no visit to any self-respecting doctor’s surgery around here would be complete without it) - “just to deal with any infection that might be present.”
multi-tasking (with sibling assistance)


I sometimes watch an argument or (more usually) a fight from a short distance away to see how it will run its course – only intervening if there is a risk of harm more serious than a scratch or perhaps a bruise.  It doesn’t happen very often (Brazilians are generally not big fighters, unlike the English), but sometimes it’s the only way a child will mature: by experience. It’s the fastest way for them to discover their limits and (hopefully) they learn to make wiser decisions as a result - something that would not be possible if I were to jump in and intervene at the first whiff of trouble. It would also make me a nervous wreck.

There’s an analogy here with medication.  Perhaps the doctor should pay the house a visit.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh, E. It is not going to be forever...lots to be with himself dealing with his anxieties... I had that breathing problem for years, it is gone for good in Jesus.

Sometimes, I have the impression, that they can adequate themselves into all kind of situations, good or bad, like it is all the same to them, it is like they are numb to reality, anyway, very nice to see R. helping E. in a very important task, thats Love.

By the way, I can only imagine your face when dealing with the public health sistem here in Brazil, make me laugh. I am glad that it is you and not me doing it, because I would not be as polite as you are, they would not like me there, they would kick me and E.out.F.

Luke said...

I'll have to bring you for back-up next time.

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