Note: This is part 2 of the story. Click here to read Part 1.
My 4-year-old little girl had been stung by a scorpion. We had dealt with the scorpion, and now I needed to save my daughter who was weeping hysterically. Were scorpion stings really lethal? Was there a 30 minute window where you could rescue someone? These kinds of thoughts were racing through my mind. It was too early to call a doctor’s office and having just moved to the area I didn’t even know where a doctor’s office was or a hospital.
I called my wife (who was out of town). She was quite shocked and said she would call and try to get a hold of someone.
I looked online. I learned that there are lots of different kinds of scorpions and that anyone under 5 should get immediate medical attention. They also recommend cold compresses. I sent my other children for a cold towel and ice.
Since everyone else was ready, I sent them to the van with my toddler and I scooped up Elizabeth in her nightgown and carried her to the van. The sting on her knee looked like a bee sting or a bad mosquito bite with a round raised area and lots of redness emanating from it.
My wife called and said that the doctor’s offices weren’t open until 8:30. She had called several parents in the area and none of them knew what to do for scorpion stings. The only person who knew anything that was helpful was the bug sprayer guy (with whom we made an immediate appointment). The bug sprayer guy told us that it sounded like a common scorpion–which were often found in our area–and that they were not lethal. It would be more like a bee sting and would go away on its own. He recommended we get some Children’s Benadryl. I decided to drop the older kids off at school and then swing by the grocery store for some Benadryl.
On the way to the school, I kept checking my rear-view-mirror to make sure my now strangely-silent-daughter was okay. I kept expecting to see her turning white or green, but she continued to look normal.
After dropping the other kids off I drove to the nearest grocery store and had to park a long way away. As I ran around the van and opened the side door, I realized I had a new problem: Elizabeth was in a nightgown with no shoes on and her little sister needed to be carried in the parking lot or held onto really tight. As I unbuckled them, I imagined trying to carry them all the way into the store and find the Benadryl and pay for it, etc. I decided against it as I remembered that many places have drive thru pharmacies. A quick glance at the building told me that this store didn’t have one. I checked my phone to see if Sienna’s was open (the pharmacy we love by our house), but they didn’t open until 10. I then found that there was a Walgreen’s with a drive thru just down the street.
I put the girls right back into their car seats as they screamed and squirmed their disapproval. The screaming didn’t stop as we pulled out onto the road and headed toward the pharmacy. When I pulled into the drive-thru, I was glad to see they were open.
“Hi, How can I help you?” the lady said through the speaker
“Sorry about the screaming, I’ve never used a drive thru at a pharmacy before, but my daughter was just stung by a scorpion and I was told to get some Children’s Benadryl.”
“Hold on a moment while I check to see if we have that.”
“Thanks for waiting. Yes, we do have that, but I’m afraid it isn’t something we carry in the pharmacy. But it is right next to the pharmacy on aisle 25.”
“Great, could you get one for me?”
“Unfortunately, no. You will have to drive around and come inside.”
Now I wanted to scream.
I drove around and got out with a girl in each arm–both fighting me as I stumbled toward the opening of the Walgreens. Once inside, I set the little one down because she had shoes and continued to carry Elizabeth in her nightgown toward the back of the store. After a minute I realized I was not being followed and retraced my steps to find the little one standing in the exact same spot I had set her. She did not want to come with me and so I dragged her kicking and screaming to aisle 25 with my 4-year-old girl wrapped around my other arm.
After a couple minutes, I was surprised to see the lady from the drive thru come over and show me where the medicine was. Maybe she was feeling guilty for not helping me earlier or maybe she just wanted to get us out of the store before we scared all the other customers off. We then began wrestling our way back to the front counter where we somehow were able to check out and then get strapped back into the van.
After driving for a few minutes, I noticed that both of my girls were now very quiet and calm. I asked Elizabeth how she was feeling and she said, “I feel good. I want to watch a movie.” I took that as a good sign. I hadn’t given her any medicine yet, but when I looked at her knee, I noticed that the redness was pretty much gone. I asked if it itched, and she said “I feel good. I want to watch a movie.” By the time we got home I couldn’t even tell where the sting had been.
We never did go to the doctor, but we did put on a movie.