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GratitudeBy Cathy Jameson

God moments.  Those happen quite a lot for me/to me.  Those are moments when I was supposed to be somewhere else but find myself with people I didn’t expect to run into.  I find myself in places I hadn’t planned to be, like when I wasn’t supposed to turn right but did.  Like when I wasn’t supposed to be at that store at that time, and I was. 

Friday, I wasn’t supposed to be home, but our caregiver was unavailable to help watch Ronan. 

So, I worked from home that morning. 

Had I been at work like I was scheduled to be, I would not have been able to quickly attend to the very big problem we were facing….

My phone was sent to silent and sitting on the table during a meeting with my boss last Wednesday.  When a call came through, I could see a phone number of the caller flash across the screen.  I recognized the area code – it’s where my son’s specialists are.  Ronan has a pretty big appointment next month.  They’re probably starting the pre-op paperwork, I thought to myself.  I’ll make sure to call them back when I won’t be interrupted.  As quickly as the phone number was on the screen, it disappeared, and I returned my focus to the meeting.

When my phone lit up two seconds later, I realized that that phone number wasn’t one of the clinic lines.  It was the specialty pharmacy that supplies the name brand seizure medications Ronan takes.  My boss saw my facial expression.  She didn’t know who it was but could tell it was important.  “Take the call,” she said. “We can wait.  Family comes first.”

I ran out of her office and found a quiet place to take the call.  “Hi, hello, hello?”  It’s hard to not sound panicky when you’re quickly feeling very panicky. 

“I’m calling about Ronan’s order.  Can you verify his birthday?  We discovered a problem and want to get it taken care of…the medication is out of stock.  We have a few options, but…”

“What?!” I immediately had a flashback, a terrible one, of a similar medication situation in December 2022.

I had just called the pharmacy the day before to ask them to refill the prescription.  Yes, we have the med in stock.  It’ll be ready tomorrow, I’m sure they told me.  “What happened between yesterday and today?” I asked.

“That was the other medication, and that order is ready,” the pharmacist replied.  Fumbling for words, I blurted, “What can I do?  Who do you need me to call?”

Already with a plan thought out, she said, “We can send the generic, or we can send the script to a different pharmacy and ask them to fill it.”

“Send the script.  We don’t want the generic,” I told her.

“Okay, perfect.  I’ll have the pharmacist send it.  You should get a call from the local pharmacy once it’s ready,” she said.

It sounded perfect, but it wasn’t perfect.

Even though the local pharmacist did call, when they read off the prescription saying it was ready, they said that it was for the generic.  I’m not sure how or why or who messed that up, but it was getting too late to question how or why or who.  It wasn’t just that our regular pharmacy didn’t have this month’s supply; I’d soon learn that other pharmacies didn’t have it either.  One of the strengths was being discontinued, and apparently the manufacturer was again unable to keep up with demand of the other strengths. 

The last time that happened, we at least had some information prior to supplies dwindling.  We also had a date, albeit six very long and agonizing weeks of when the name brand would again be available.  This time, I felt blindsided – no solid information ahead of time, mistakes made already, and no date to cling to.

It was all so overwhelming.  But I quickly got to work.

I made a list of national chain pharmacies and started calling ones local to me.  “I’m looking for name brand… it can’t be generic…the generic causes seizures…can you tell me if you have it…or if any of the other stores in your network within 100 miles have it?”  I heard the same message from a few places, “Sorry, no, we don’t have any on our shelves, and none of our partner stores between here and…well, none have it in stock right now either.”

I had one more national chain store to call.  Feeling completely overwhelmed, I dialed.  “Oh, ma’am, I’m so sorry you are dealing with this.  We don’t have any here.  Let me put you on hold and check our system.  It takes a few minutes to go through the other stores’ inventory, so give me 2 or 3 minutes,” the young gal said. 

In those two or three minutes, I texted my sister and our best friend asking them to please pray.  This was so out of my own hands that I knew I’d need some strong support from others.  I later told my sister that I don’t think I have PTSD, but dang that initial phone call sure did put me in a place I had felt like I’d been before and hoped that I’d never be back in ever.  Answering the phone call during the meeting, my heart raced, my mind raced, my breathing changed, my voice changed, and I felt trapped.  Making calls to other pharmacies brought back some of those responses.  Both my sister and our best friend lifted this intention quickly as did several others when I made them aware of the situation. 

Last time this happened, we went well beyond that 100-mile radius and had people checking outside of the US for a supply.  No one had exactly what we were looking for, but people rallied, tips came in, and one small supply was eventually located.  When Team Ronan rallies, they rally, which greatly helps me navigate these awful situations.  

That time, we at least had a date of when the meds would be back in stock and available to ship to us.  This time, none of the pharmacists knew if they would be able to order the drug.  No date was given, and no warnings of the delay shared with them or to the patients.  Just like last time, it was dire and felt like it was getting worse.

Then the young woman at the Walmart store took me off of hold.  “Ma’am?”


“I looked and found one box for you.  It’s not close by but over 100 miles away.  If you think you want it, I can help you get in contact with the pharmacist there.”

Yes!! Praise God! 

It took some juggling – me calling, them calling, the original pharmacy calling, the paperwork to be electronically transferred from one hand to the other.  Like many other things we’ve had to manage and deal with, it was not an easy process.  My favorite quote is The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.  It would be a shorter journey for us this time and where this story gets just a little bit sweeter. 

That small town that’s over 100 miles away, I would’ve walked there if I had to.  But that Walmart in that small town happened to be on a route my husband was taking later that evening as he headed out of town on a work trip.  “I know exactly where the store is.  Tell me what I need to do, and I’ll get it done,” he said 

At 7:35pm, he had the script in hand.

It’s only a partial script, but it buys us time.  The pharmacy we use all the time ended up calling me back mid-afternoon.  “Mrs. Jameson, I just want to make sure you found what you need for Ronan.  I am going to do some work here to see about filling the rest of the order.  I don’t want Ronan to have any lapses so I can send a courier to you.  I’ll work on getting insurance to cover it, too.  That may be tricky, but I’ll do what I can on my end.”  When she called, I was on the road myself.  Friday was not going to be a full day of work, had I been able to go in.  I had planned on taking Ronan to see his brother that afternoon. 

All week I’d been looking forward to a late lunch, helping move him out of the dorm, and visiting with new friends.  With the flurry of calls and panic that set in, I wasn’t sure if we’d make it out of the house.  Thankfully, we did.  And when our pharmacist called to offer a door-to-door delivery, I shared that I was actually going to be driving through where they are.  “If you have the other strengths and can get the doctor to make a quick switch, I am literally going to be in your area in 45 minutes.  Just let me know if you need me to stop in.”

“You know what, I think I can fill it and mail it to you, so you don’t have to stop,” she said.  I could hear her quickly typing while I had her on speaker phone. 

Crying on the back roads through farmland is unsafe, so I allowed only 2 or 3 tears to well up.

“Oh, that would be amazing.  We’ll be coming back through your area this evening, maybe around 5:30…so, I’ll keep my phone on in case I do need to pick it up from you directly,” I offered. 

“I am scheduling it to be overnighted, you should be all set,” she explained. 

“Thank you!  Ohmygoodness, thank you.  You all are always so helpful.  I can’t tell you enough how grateful I am, even in these really worrisome situations,” I gushed.

“Of course, Mrs. Jameson.  I’m glad to help.  Call us if anything comes up.  We’ll do what we can,” she said right before we hung up.

Most weeks I don’t know what I’ll be writing about until I sit down to write.  Some weeks I wait for something to inspire me, or I wait until something happens to know, A-ha!  That’s the story!  I knew right away that that phone call in the meeting on Wednesday would be part of today’s story.  I didn’t know how the story would end until I got that last phone call on Friday afternoon.  Not every story ends on a positive note, but I’ll always be grateful to share them, especially the ones that include God moments.  Thank God for the extra medication supply, for the extra help we received and so quickly, for the extra prayers, and for the extra time we did get with Willem’s brother and with our new friends.  In the midst of the storms, for there have been many, I still remain grateful.    

Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.


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Gerardo Martinez

So happy it all worked out for your son. Amazing how our faith in humanity is restored when someone goes above and beyond! Happy Endings are always a delight to read about. Thank you.


Kathy-I am so glad you got Ronan's medication for him. I had a similar experience once with my son and they also told me they had run out of supplies and that it would be shipping in express mail the same day. However the whole day went by and no medication delivered so my son had no seizure medication for 24 hours. The time was too long to wait and he had a seizure the same day here at home and we had to get him into bed because, as you know, the seizures are very exhausting and they need to sleep for a few hours to get back their strength. Finally the medication arrived and we were saved the trauma of another seizure. Thank you for telling us your story as it really helps to know we are not alone on our challenging and stressful journey with seizures and autism. God Bless our beautiful sons.

Andrew Foss

Oh the fun of neuromeds. More often our problem is with prescriptions and having them run out and have to to be pre-authorized by insurance. Our last issue with that was a med like yours that had to be ordered out of state. It took the pharmacy over a week to figure it out I finally called them panicked because we had run out. I give them credit because they messengered it over 150 Miles same day to us.

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