I have learned that scheduling a surgery like this takes several steps. I knew it would, but I am learning just exactly what that means. First, we had XRays, then met with the neurosurgeon, then the CT Scan, then wait five weeks and see the cranial facial surgeon, then wait three weeks for the insurance to get authorized, then wait 8 days to hear from the scheduler, then wait four weeks for surgery. Early in this process, things moved at a lightening pace. Thankfully. That was, by far, the most scary time yet and we were so glad to have our questions answered quickly and more serious conditions ruled out-- but following an otherwise "clean" CT scan and with an otherwise healthy baby (thank you Lord)-- and the waiting game began.
Insurance Authorization: After seeing the cranial facial surgeon in early May we waited two weeks for him to submit it to insurance. This is not considered "cosmetic" but is considered "elective." As you might know, all surgeries except for the ones in the ER are considered "elective". And due to the financials of this surgery, and because submitting to insurance has become "routine" for most doctors, our surgeons prepared paperwork and pictures for our insurance. They said it has been "rejected" once in all their years, and that was easily reversed. But still, this was a necessary step. I believe God did a miracle in that once the paperwork got to insurance, it got authed in ONE DAY. Sometimes this step takes three or four weeks or longer, and I am so thankful we didn't have to keep waiting.
I called 10 days after our appointment and the staff said our paperwork had not even gotten submitted yet. I was so angry, and really acted in a way that I was not proud of. I was so frustrated. I cried so much that, completely exhausted, I canceled my plans for the night and threw my hands up in desperation. (Well, after I used them to text everyone with a keyboard about my frustration :) I surrendered to God, and four days later we had our authorization. Thanks, God.
Scheduling: Today I was mindlessly switching laundry, with my head in the dryer, when I answered my phone and -- low and behold-- it was the surgeon's scheduler. She apologized for the delay, and explained the difficulty of scheduling both surgeons and an operating room. Etc, etc, and she has it scheduled for nine weeks from today, July 31st. I managed to keep my head about me and explained that I have the summer off and had been led to believe that the surgery would be much sooner-- would she please talk to the surgeons to reconsider. She said she would call back. Sure enough, she called back and the day is circled on our calendar-- Wednesday, June 27th. So there we have it. So thrilled to hopefully have it done with plenty of time to help Tucker recover before students come back to NCC. And, we are ready to be "on the other side" of this surgery. We are ready for the waiting and anticipation to be over.
I'm excited to getting back to the work of being a mom, and not worrying about schedulers, insurance, appointments, etc for awhile. We will have a pre-op physical with our pediatrician a week before the surgery, some blood work before it, and probably other stuff I don't even know about yet. For now, we are thanking God for helping us get to here and we are trying to take it one step at a time-- knowing that it is a big part of our lives, but not our entire life!
I am also GIVING THANKS for:
* Gods peace and genuinely low anxiety. I am thankful for a sure understanding that God is real, that he loves Tucker, and that He is good.
* The way this has worked out in scheduling-- we are trusting in Gods timing and trusting that He opened the doors to have this sooner rather than later. For flexible work, and for the peace of mind knowing I have all of July off to help Tucker recover for as long as we all need.
* That our insurance was authed so quickly.
* That this surgery will take place around the 6 month mark.
* My three boys-- they are each totally wonderful. Tucker has become a real joy. Dave and I laughed that we have always loved him... and we're starting to like him, too :)
* A few wonderful "Cranio Moms" I have met. Katy's son had this surgery in November at Children's and she has been nothing short of fantastic, willing, helpful and empathetic. Holly is in the exact same shoes as me (as in she got her surgery date today, too). Together, these ladies have helped me remember that I am not alone. I have met other families with children who had this procedure six or seven or more years ago-- such a blessing. Thank you to each of you who have helped us get connected to others. I am also following another local blogger whose daughter just successfully had this procedure here at Children's.
Thank you for your prayers. We are praying for a peaceful, healthy month!
On the journey,