I am feeling sad and discouraged and stressed today, because the doctor called with the results of Edward’s most recent bloodwork, and there were good things and bad things, and it all basically means we have to try new things: new medicines, new dosages, more bloodwork in a month. His doctor is so good at explaining things, and I feel good about his ideas and his reasons, but it is still stressful and worrisome. I especially hate reading the potential side effects list of a new medication.
Also, you will not believe this, but the lab (the one that made us go back three times for one set of tests) called yesterday and said they’d neglected to do one of the tests. And fortunately I called the doctor to let him know, because one of the nurses there looked it up and said “…No, we have all the results right here.” So the lab was going to have us come back and redo a test that HAD IN FACT BEEN DONE, and then our insurance would not have covered the duplicate, unnecessary test. So an additional source of stress right now is figuring out what to do about that, because I don’t want to use this lab anymore.
Option A is to drive two hours down to the horrible big city every time Edward needs bloodwork; that’s where we have it done when we’re there anyway for an appointment with his specialist. Upside: they do it right every single time; they always have the right kits; they are part of the same hospital as Edward’s doctor, so the lab/doctor communication is superb. Downside: driving into a city, among drivers who, when I’m scared or can’t figure things out, think I’m being a princess or an idiot or both, and that honking at me will communicate to me the correct way to get through the intersection THEY are familiar with and therefore find easy. Additional downside: every time we take that trip, a part of me honestly believes we will die. I’m not overstating this for comic effect. Additional downside: it takes more than half a day to do it this way, and it has to be during the school day. I’m trying hard to minimize the amount of school Edward misses.
A suboption for Option A is to take a shuttle that would drop us off half a mile from the hospital. Upside: someone else does the driving; fear of death significantly reduced. Downsides: the additional scheduling hassle; the fear of doing something new when I don’t know how it works; walking with a child in the city, when I basically broadcast Town Mouse from every pore; increased fear of getting mugged; same problems with taking half a day and missing school.
Option B is to go to a different lab, the one connected with our pediatrician. Our insurance company says the one we’ve been going to is the only reasonably local lab they will cover. However, when they told me that the only place we could get x-rays done was two hours away in the city, I decided to pay cash and take William to the place in our town. AND THE INSURANCE DID COVER IT, AFTER SAYING THEY DIDN’T EVEN RECOGNIZE THE EXISTENCE OF THAT PLACE. (And it’s not just that I’m misunderstanding, because the place has signs up all over the walls saying patients with our insurance may not be covered; and once when I went there for something for myself, it created an enormous insurance tangle involving backdated referrals for services I didn’t even get.) So I could just take Edward to that lab (same place as the x-ray place) and risk it. Downside: one of the tests is very, very, very expensive. Like, even AFTER insurance we pay $250 of it. So if insurance WOULDN’T cover this lab, we’d be in trouble. However, we don’t get the super-expensive test every time, so Option B may work for the times when we don’t need that test.
Option C is sort of the same as Option B, but involves trying a DIFFERENT different lab. I’ve heard people talking about Quest Labs as being the place their insurance covers. There’s one of those near us. We could try that one. I looked on THEIR website and THEY say they take our insurance. Downside: maybe they’ll be just as bad as the other lab we’ve been going to. Upside: they could hardly be WORSE. And they’re a shorter drive, and now I know the kit needs to be ordered, and that I should go Monday-Thursday, and so forth.
Well, I’m agitated. I think I’ll go into the kitchen and start making things with pumpkin and cinnamon and cranberries. It always makes me feel cheery to imagine so many of us in our kitchens at the same time, working with such similar ingredients.