An Online Journal for Women by Women

Murphy’s Law Day

Today, unbeknownst to me, I ended up having a “Murphy’s Law” Day! This is what Murphy’s Law is about: Expecting the unexpected. In its simplest form, Murphy’s Law states: “If anything can go wrong, it will.” 

“Believe it or not, Edward J. Murphy was a real person. In fact, he was a major in the US Air Force in the 1940s, specializing in development engineering. As much of his work involved testing experimental designs, he was frequently faced with things that didn’t exactly go to plan. Scholars differ on precisely what words were originally used when the phrase ‘Murphy’s Law’ was first coined, but the meaning is clear.”

Here is how my Murphy’s Law day went

My appointment with my podiatrist was at 10:15 a.m. I was having the same problem with both feet, and another problem with just the left foot. I was so happy to go to the Towson office. Otherwise I would have to schlep to Union Memorial Hospital, much further away and more difficult for me to find. I checked the address on google and with my husband, who literally has a map inside his brain, so I was all set to go.

Even though the GPS in the car and my husband said to allow a good 30 minutes, I left 45 minutes early. I was off and found my way to the address, even having the suite number with me. When I got inside, there was no directory and the suite numbers were in the 100s and my note said Suite 15.

I rode the elevator to the floor below thinking the double digits were below the first floor where the triple digits were. Again, there was no such suite number. I finally found an office door opened and asked, “Where is Suite 15?” The response was, “There is no Suite 15. Who are you trying to see?” I said, “Dr. John Senatore, a podiatrist.” She and the others never heard of him.

I rode back up to ground level, sat in the lobby and called the doctor’s number. “I am in the building on Kenilworth Avenue, but cannot find Suite 15.” The office assistant said I was at their old address. “Oh no,” I cried, “I will be late for my appointment,” sure that she now heard the stress in my voice.

She said, “Ms. Solomon, don’t worry about that. The doctor will see you when you get here.” She gave me the correct address and suite number and I was all set to go again. With the address in the car’s GPS, it took 10 minutes, just like she said.

At the podiatrist

I apologized to her for being late, signed in and gave her my driver’s license and both health insurance cards. There was only one simple form to fill out which I completed and returned to her quickly. By this time, I really needed the ladies room and asked where it was. She said, “Go down the hall, turn left and it will be on your right.” She added, “The code for the ladies room is 531.” I thanked her and said I would be right back. She told me not to rush, as she realized how late I was.

Since I am not a “numbers” person, meaning I never remember any numbers, I was glad the code was 531, as my anniversary is 5/30, so I could remember it without having to ask anyone else.

Now, I’m finally back in the examining room, relieved when the doctor walked in. He has been my and my husband’s podiatrist for many years and we think he is the best. He examined both feet, agreed with the primary care physician that the top of both feet have arthritis. UGH. A bad word when you are in your late 60s. “The over-the-counter cream the PCP recommended is fine to use,” he said. 

However, the left foot had a more severe problem. It started when I was at the beach about a month ago. I noticed I had trouble walking in the sand with my Champion flip flops. Dr. Senatore said something to this effect: “The sand can be difficult to walk on and is not good for your feet.”

I said, “I guess I should have worn walking shoes on the beach,” but he did not reply to that. The tendon is sore, bruised, aggravated and inflamed.

The girl at the front desk called in a prescription for an anti-inflammatory to be picked up later that day. When I got home, I called the pharmacy to see if it was ready and was told, “Your insurance will not cover this, as it is not a formulary medication.” She explained to me this meant it was not covered under my plan and they would need authorization from the doctor. 

Great, I thought. Another problem I did not need, but had anyway. I called my insurance company and luckily spoke to a very nice lady who understood my situation. She explained to me what I needed to do. Express Scripts, my prescription insurance, is a mail order pharmacy for medication I take regularly. However, if I need something right away, I have to use specific local pharmacies.

Filling the prescription

Next, I received a text message that the doctor authorized the medication. So, I called CVS asking when it would be ready. I was told about 30-45 minutes. I waited an hour just to be sure. When I got there, people were walking away from the front door, without even going into the store. A note on the door stated, “Due to the power outage, the store is closed.” Of course, no one had any idea of when it would reopen.

I should have known this! The lights in my house flickered several times before I left, and the cable television went out completely. The lights were then okay, but it took a while for the television to come back on, but it finally did.

With CVS closed, I decided to go the Giant food store to get a couple of things. I was thinking I could do both stops and not have to go out again. Lo and behold, minimal electricity at the Giant, too. If the items were covered with plastic or had “caution” tape around them, you could not purchase them. 

Since I was running around so much on my foot that was hurting more and more, I thought I would wait a little bit since I am already out. I went into a beauty supply store right next to the food store. For weeks, I have been looking for eye shadow pencils to no avail. They had them. Because the computers were still shut down, it had to be a cash transaction. I purchased the three colors I really liked and told her to keep the change, as it was so minimal and she could not open the cash drawer. 

Next, I saw the lights were back on in the Giant so I went in. The few items I needed were still under plastic wrap and caution tape. 

I was so glad to be home about five minutes later where I rested my feet and put a bag of frozen peas on my left foot, as the doctor recommended.

This truly was Murphy’s Law day for me. 

Read more by Marlene Wolff Solomon.

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