12 March, 2009

Testing a Mom's Mettle

We finally got back last night just before dinner. Three weeks was just about the right amount of time to be Home in Manitoba but the Little Goat and me being sick for a week and a half in the middle of the trip seemed to make it stretch on even longer.

The first few days were fine but the LG must've picked up some sort of virus from the airplane (or maybe we were just never quite over whatever it was we had before we left) and after nearly a week of being sick, ended up in the hospital for two nights on the 27th/28th. My Mom and I took her to a walk-in clinic on that Friday and the doctor couldn't come up with any diagnosis so she referred us to the pediatrician on-call in the ER. It didn't take him very long to determine that she was quite dehydrated and needed an IV.

It took the doctor, a resident, and four nurses to take blood samples and get the IV started. It was awful. In the meantime, my Mom went home and got together some stuff for us and my best friend, Chandra (she told me I should write about her because she wants her 15 minutes of fame and somehow she's crazy enough to think my blog is going to get that for her - hah! Such a supportive friend.....), stopped by and picked up everything to bring it to the hospital.

They finally took us up to the LG's room at almost 9pm.
There have been plenty of updates to the hospital recently, but evidently, none in the pediatric ward in the last 25 years. Pepto-bismal-pink walls with really old-school Sesame Street Baby wallpaper border, the oldest bed in the ward (I checked; the nurse the first night could barely get the siderail up!), and an all-metal crib that looked like something you'd find in a Cold War bunker. The nightshift nurses were great for the most part but the day shift nurses? Wow. Cranky to the nth degree...until I told them we were paying for every dollar of our stay and then things did a 180. Hmmm....

The pediatrician was great! I was completely impressed with his bedside manner and interaction with the LG. I also felt like he *gasp* valued my opinion! It turned out though, that while we were on the same page as far as what we were hoping for, he wasn't quite as in a hurry as I was to get the LG discharged. I was really hoping we wouldn't have to stay in a second night ($$) but eventually caved and to bed we went.

All this time, we were concerned but not overly about the hospital bill we knew was coming. (And here's where this post turns from simply a woeful tale into a cautionary tale.) We bought travel insurance which included medical coverage before we left Maine, but alas, I screwed it up. You know how when you're filling out forms online and you miss something on the first page so you go back, fix it, and then continue but for some reason not all the information took? Yeah, well I did that. For whatever reason, I checked and re-checked the information I had entered but never noticed that the trip dates were entered wrong. Nobody from the insurance company caught it either, so I didn't know until I called in to start a medical claim that according to the policy we purchased, we traveled from Maine to Manitoba AND BACK on the same day. (Physically impossible, I know.) So, we are now on the hook for the entire $3500 hospital bill. Oh yay us.

So there you have it. The 10 days after the hospital visit were good. We got to see all my cousins and Erin K. & Co., I got to spend lots of time with Chandra, and lots of evenings playing cards with my Mom, lots of time watching curling with my Dad, Anja brought a lot of joy to Grama & Grampa's house when joy was needed most....and now we are in more debt than we ever thought we could possibly need at the worst possible time we can imagine.

The moral of the story? Uh, I don't really know how to encapsulate it in one sentence, but for the love of all things good - quadruple-check the dates when you enter information online!


{Jodie} said...

Oh Bren, that's just awful! I feel really bad for y'all. In the end though, everything seems to work out... God works all things together for the good of those who are called by his name.

I am glad to hear your trip was satisfying otherwise. :)

Anonymous said...

Oh, sad! I'm just bummed that your trip had so many setbacks. How is YOUR mom doing?