An OCD Adventure with Antibiotics

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I’m sick. I got bronchitis. This happens to me. Here’s the summary of how it all goes down inside my special mind:

1. I get a simple cold. I haven’t had one in over six years. I’m most pissed that the streak is broken because it is hard enough to think with my OCD without being dragged down by a cold. But I muscle through it.

2. Oh, right. I always get bronchitis after a cold. Maybe I won’t… and two days pass and there it is.

3. I need antibiotics. I don’t have insurance because I started a new company and that isn’t something I want to spend money on right now. But I know I need antibiotics.

4. I’ve heard good things about the walk-up clinic down the street. They have a sliding scale on the cost of the visit, but I can afford the higher bracket there, I just want to feel better. (“I’ve heard good things,” by the way, means I don’t trust anything I’ve heard about this place.)

5. I need to call the clinic to see if I need an appointment. But these are walk-up clinics, no? No, I don’t trust any of that, I need to call.

6. So I call the clinic, and they want me to set an appointment. They can set an appointment for me three days from now. That’s quick! I can do that.

7. The appointment is set for three days from now. No, that is far too long. I’ve already had bronchitis for a few days and it will turn into pneumonia or something deathly if I don’t get on antibiotics right away.

8. Screw it, I’m going to go against their wishes and just walk-in today. I get ready to go, and I begin pacing. Should I break the rules? Should I stick to the appointment? What nightmare will I be getting myself into in terms of time waiting without an appointment for right now? Will I get in trouble? What’s the worst that… no, don’t ask that question. Ok, screw it, I need antibiotics now for my life, so I go.

9. In the waiting room, it’s crowded. How do I judge “crowded?” I don’t know, I just do. It’s crowded and it will take them hours to see me.

10. Oh, now they want to talk about cost. I know I can afford the higher payment on the scale for the visit, but maybe I should let them go with it and maybe offer me less? My income is weird running a business. Wait, that’s morally wrong. Doing something morally wrong is going to cause the antibiotics not to work because I will deserve that. I should make sure to pay the highest amount to ensure fairness and—as always—no omens.

11. Wow… I’m called in to see the doctor right away, no real mention of my appointment that I shirked… now will the doctor agree to the antibiotics? What are the chances that he won’t let me get antibiotics? Is that a thing? Trying to curtail the use of antibiotics? Will I have to try another clinic?

12. He says the magic word: “antibiotics.” We’re on!

13. So now they’re going to call in my prescription to Walmart. Great. How many ways can this mess up? Oh, plenty. Well, off to Walmart where I’ll just pester them every 10 minutes.

14. Walmart worked. This is all going way to swimmingly. So swimmingly, in fact, that I am thinking of words like “swimmingly.”

15. Back home. It’s late. Well, these antibiotics will take some time, so I start in. They said I should take two tonight. I never feel right starting medication at night. That doesn’t feel like it’ll work best. There’s some reason my brain thinks starting things in the morning is just… more… right. But screw it, I’m going in.

16. The six antibiotic pills are all the same, though they are—for some reason—labeled “Day 1, 2, 3, etc…” I should make sure to take them in that order. Oh, look, “don’t take with antacids.” Not an issue.

[Two days pass]

17. Well, I’m not feeling much better and… oh crap. Crap. I do take an antacid. I think. I’m pretty sure. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. I’ve ruined the whole antibiotic regimen! I’m going to have to start over. Maybe my appointment at the clinic is still valid. I’ll look up the interaction between the two meds on the internet. It says no negative interaction. I don’t trust it. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. Crap. I’ve messed this whole thing up and I will have bronchitis and then worse for a very long time. There goes my week… month!

[Another day passes]

18. Oh, never mind. Now I feel better.

19. On to the next thing…