Apr 17, 2007

300 and minor victories

This blog is our 300th! Holly and I started this thing up when I first mobilized to DC in May 2004. We’re at almost exactly three years so it would appear that we average 100 posts per year... interesting statistic. Or not. :-P

Okay, so today… what did I get done today? Well, before I even get there, let me tell you that I tossed and turned until about 3am. My mind races through all the things that I need to get done in the next few days, ways to get them done quicker, and the ever present thought of having a seizure while alone always haunts me. I don’t know why I am afraid of it. But sometimes it terrifies me. The two times I was conscious for the start of them, they were agonizing and I remember them well. I think back to how horrible and scary it feels and just don’t want to have it happen to me while I’m alone. It’s nice when Holly is there, as she was every time, to tell me its going to be okay. But eventually it is going to happen when I’m alone or in public around strangers. I just need to keep praying that the Lord will ease my fears. Join me, will you? This is a toughie for me.

Alright, back to today. Since I didn’t get to sleep until late, I woke up later. I finally got to the Pentagon around 10am and went to the medical clinic. I went to the desk and told the nice lady that I was out-processing and needed to retrieve my records. She went to the back and brought them out. If you take a look at item number one on my list from yesterday, you’ll remember that I needed to get my profile paperwork. As soon as the lady handed me my records, I cracked it open to see if the profile was in there. Nada. I then explained to her that I called right before I went on leave about this and that someone changed it in the computer and that the paperwork must be somewhere. She looked in her computer and saw that I did call about it. I found an old temporary profile and handed it to her and told her that I just needed a new updated one that is permanent like in the computer. She took it to the back to a nurse to see if the doctor could fill it out. While she was gone, I stood at the counter, bowed my head, and just prayed that the good Lord would intervene and just get it signed today somehow. She was gone a while and I sat down. After a few minutes, the nurse came back and said that the doctor needed to see me to fill it out and that there were no more appointments today. The lady at the front desk said that I would have to call back at 6am the next morning to make an appointment with my doctor so that she could do it. This didn’t sound acceptable to me. First of all, my doctor knows what’s going on with me and could have the form filled out in five minutes. Second, I already called over a month ago and asked the doctor to take care of this – and someone did because it changed in the computer. I really had a problem with having to do extra legwork to get something signed that should have been signed a month ago.

I expressed these concerns to the lady at the front desk and she was willing to hear me out. I’m trying to get a lot done and can’t get around easily and they wanted me to go the extra mile to get something done that should have already been done. Are you getting me? Finally, I told her that first and foremost, I am a soldier, and I will obey an order; and if the commander of the clinic tells me to go home and come back tomorrow, I will obey that order without another word. But if there was anything that we could do to get the form signed today, I would do it. Silence. She told me to have a seat and she disappeared. When she returned, she said that the nurse of the day would see me shortly.

After another wait, the nurse, an Army Captain, called me into their office. I again explained my dilemma to the CPT and she listened to me. The CPT told me that they would be able to help me out, but it would not be immediately. It was nearing noon. My doctor would have an opening at 1340 that day where the paperwork might be taken care of. I made a quick call to Tamra, who was supposed to drive me around, but wasn’t able to get a hold of her. I decided this was an answer to my prayer so I decided that I better take the CPT up on the offer, even though it meant that I wouldn’t get out of the Pentagon until near 3pm. The CPT made the appointment and I was off to find lunch. It worked out great because I needed to drop off a set of keys anyway at the office I worked at for a while. They were happy to see me again and let me use a workstation to check my email, make a few phone calls and eat my lunch.

I made it back to the clinic by 1330 and was called back to see the doctor. The doctor finally came in at around 1350. I brought the doctor up to speed and in less than five minutes the form was done and in my hands, and I was out the door. Four hours of work to see a doctor for five minutes to get a form filled out. Can you believe it? Now we can cross number one off the list! A big thanks to the nice lady at the desk who was willing to do what she could to get me what I needed today. I was sure to fill out a comment card commending her actions and dropped it in the comment box.

On to number two: I called Tamra and she picked me up at the Pentagon City Metro station. We headed down to Fort Belvoir and found our way to the out-processing building. We checked in and I had to provide copies of all my orders for the whole three years and other paperwork. I was then given a checklist of buildings that I needed to visit to get them to check items off of the list. Things like: Personnel, Finance, Medical, Dental, etc. We went upstairs to the first item on the list: personnel. When we got there, I explained to the Staff Sergeant that I was eventually going to have an MEB. Thank God I told the SSG that, because since that was the case the SSG said that we should skip everything on the list and just go right to medical. Nothing else would matter since I wasn’t really going to get out right now anyway. I just needed to get to medical so that they could see there is an issue and they could refer me to WRAMC. Boy, talk about a life saver! The SSG was very helpful, so I made sure to save their phone number for any future questions I might have. It was just after 1600 and we noticed that the first place in medical was still open, so we went there first.

We found the building after getting slightly lost and I picked up a medical packet. The packet said that pretty much all the other stations were closed, so we decided to call it a day. Tomorrow we’re going to head back down to Ft Belvoir and try to get the medical stuff completed. I also need to sign my NCOER that they couldn’t find on Monday. I’m going to call work in the morning to see if they have it handy. If they still can’t find it, I’m going to go to Belvoir first. If they do have it, I’ll go to work first thing and sign it and then head down to Belvoir.

So, I’d call today a pretty good day. I just hope that tomorrow goes smoother. After work, I made some copies of paperwork that I might need tomorrow and sent a copy of my new profile to my unit in Fort Worth as they needed a copy. Then I went to a community group of my church that meets in Kezia’s building. Kezia and Jumoke picked me up and I had a great time hanging out with everyone. I feel pretty tired today, so I’m hoping that my body gives in and I can get some decent sleep tonight. Thanks to everyone for your prayers!


Anonymous said...

just dropping by to say hello


Unknown said...

Hi James! If this is the James I think it is... I hope you're doing well.