Conspiracy Theories

Somewhere out there in the confusing universe otherwise known as MY LIFE, there is a conspiracy brewing. One in which little elves are floating above my head, whispering excitedly as they plot against me, laughing as they watch me spin and twist and try to figure out what the heck is happening—at least this is how I imagine it.

Okay, maybe I’m being a bit dramatic, but hear me out and decide for yourself.

So a couple months ago, I was preparing to attend a writer’s conference in St. Louis. At the same time, my youngest daughter was put on the waiting list at Arkansas Children’s Hospital—nothing alarming happening, just something minor that needs monitoring—and the waiting list is typically a lengthy one.

So I’m set to leave for St. Louis on a Thursday. And then less than one month after placing my daughter on the (year-long) waiting list, I get the call from the hospital. “Can you bring your daughter here on Wednesday?”

St. Louis is six hours north of my house. Little Rock is three hours south. And I needed to be in both places within twenty-four hours.


So of course I went. I drove and drove and drove, and somehow wound up everywhere on time. And sometime during all that driving, I remembered something the nice doctor at Children’s Hospital said to me before we left.

“We need to see her again in two months. We’ll call you soon to let you know your appointment time.”

Cut to two months later.

It’s Thanksgiving week, and on Tuesday my family is headed to Chicago—roughly an eleven hour drive in the northernly direction of my house. We’re meeting the rest of my family—parents, sisters, brothers-in-law, cousins—and can’t wait. Yeah, driving stinks, but it really isn’t all that bad. Unless, of course, you get another call from the hospital.

“Can you bring your daughter on Monday?” the nice doctor said.

“Sure,” I said. And bit back a whole lotta mean words as I hung up the phone.

For real? Are you kidding? Again??

So we went. And now we’re heading home to shove a few clothes in suitcases, shout a few orders to the other three kids, and jump in the car to head north. I’m ready for the break. I need some time away. I want to relax.

But in the very back of my mind, I can still hear the nice doctor’s parting words, delivered with a sweet smile and heartwarming laugh.

“We’ll need to see her back in March. We’ll call you with the time.”

Of course. Spring Break is in March.

Any guesses on when her appointment will be?


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