Wednesday, March 1, 2017

By the skin of our teeth...

Oh what a 24 hours it has been! Our biggest concern on our last update was squeaking his flu past anesthesia.  That turned into a complete non-issue, and others arose and took their place.  Let me start at the beginning though.

First I wanted to show you something amazing that the mom's of the kids in Jacob's class at school did...

I got this picture yesterday from his teacher, and was so touched.  I cannot believe that they did this and am so thankful for these friends at Middle Valley Academy, who love Jacob and are continuing to pray for him.  He misses them so much, and I'm hoping he'll be well enough Thursday to facetime with his teacher and friends.  We love you all, and thank you for doing this.  

Yesterday, Jacob was looking great with no flu symptoms, and had actually had none for a couple days.  So we decided to take him to the aquarium, as he was feeling cheated from all of the fun things he knows this city had to offer.  We figured with him not coughing or sneezing or even having a runny nose, that we wouldn't be exposing anyone, just walking around looking at the fish.  The hospital was so gracious to give us tickets, so we were able to go for free!  Those of you who know him well, know how much he loves aquariums, fish, undersea creatures, divers, and really anything aquatic related.  So he was in heaven!  They had penguins and seals, awesome tanks, and a great petting area.  He absolutely loved it!  And he got to see the divers in action, and even got to see them up close when they got out.  He wants to be a diver when he grows up, so this was a highlight for him.  We had a great time, and it was good to get out and do something fun.  I have tons of pictures but left my camera in the room back at the Yawkey, so I will try to add them later.

We ate lunch at Wahlburgers, and made our way back to the hospital for preop testing which we were nervous about. If anesthesia did not feel comfortable with how he looked, they could pull the plug on the whole thing.  He sailed through with everyone marvelling at how he recovered so fast because he looked like he had never been sick!  They couldn't believe he had the flu over the weekend and deemed him in perfect condition and fit for surgery.  Friends, I know how many of you prayed for Jake this weekend, and all I could think at their amazement was...BUT GOD.  There was no reason he should look like he does...but God.  Thank you all so much.  He heard, and He answered.  So with anesthesia's stamp of approval, we went on our way.

We had a break for a couple hours before our final appointment so David and Jacob walked back to the Yawkey Inn for  a rest and I stayed behind to fight another battle that arose during lunch--- insurance approval.  I thought at the beginning of this that this trip was going to be easy.  We received our approval for his procedure at the first request (which has never happened before), and figured it was because of our long standing network adequacy exception that I achieved 3 years ago, essentially proving that no one in our network could treat his condition.  Questions began coming up at the end of last week though, in regards to the 2nd procedure, which I never received approval for.  Every time I contacted the hospital, they were like, "we're good, no issues-all approvals in place."  But then when I contacted our insurance, they gave me increasingly strange questions.  Finally yesterday at lunch I tried to confirm with them, and they said that the procedure approval (which I had in hand) was now in question, and in reality, going to be revoked.  They asked where Boston Children's Hospital was, and I stated, "Boston" and they unbelievably asked what state, I replied "Massachusetts."  They said they did not realize that and should not have given their approval in the first place and that we could not have the procedures.  You can imagine how that went over.  So round and round we went, all day, with me spending approximately 6-7 hours on the phone, talking with multiple representatives from Cigna, multiple people from the hospital's finance dept and our doctor's offices.  I finally ran out of people available to talk to last night around 8, and had to stop for the night.  After a fitful evening, I awoke with peace today.  I felt God did not want me to fight this battle any longer and give it to Him.  I decided I was not going to work on this at all this morning, other than to confirm with the hospital that they still had an approval and no information otherwise (which they did).  We felt we could not be held responsible if our insurance company did not communicate with the hospital anything revoking the given approval, and for that matter, did not ever initiate contact with me stating we did not have approval.  All information I received was from contacting them.  We felt we should not put a stop to this, denying Jacob the care he needs, because of their issues.  We felt confident that we had enough documentation supporting our position and our decision to proceed, that we could deal with the insurance issues and fight that battle later, even if it meant in the legal arena.  I decided that I was going to keep my focus on Jacob this morning as he needed me to be present for him, and not distracted or on the phone trying to sort this out.  I let it go.  We had to be here at 7, so Jake was pretty tired, but we had a good time in preop, snuggling and playing.

I forgot to tell all of you, that something momentous happened this trip, thanks to my dear friend, Jackie (Money) Smith...Jacob finally caught the moon!

I am so glad that we did, as this morning at 10am, and hour and a half into the procedure, I received a call from Cigna, that we have a new point person on our case, and acknowledged the mistakes on their part, and assured me that our existing approval still stands, and that the network exception that was still supposed to be in place is being expedited as we speak.  He was confident in the full coverage of all of Jacob's medical care on this trip.  Again, friends...BUT GOD.  So many people reached out to me last night, so many were praying.  God heard, and answered.

I cannot express our gratitude to the host of you who have rallied around us in the past week, especially in the past 24 hours.  Every comment, message, share, text, and call has encouraged my heart in a week that has left me depleted.  Every prayer offered on our son's behalf, every positive thought, every heart that has held us close, each one of you has helped get us to this point.  I can never thank you enough or repay what has been done for us.  I said it once before--for all you have done, and for all of your support, Jacob's story is yours as well.  Please continue to keep him in thought and in prayer and I will update when he gets out of surgery as I can.  

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