Tri-State Healthcare

Hi Guys!!! It has been a whirlwind!

Returned Monday night from the Memorial Day Hootenanny Extravaganza at Mrs. Schmenkmans house in Virginia, which was not held over Memorial Day Weekend. Just the first of many changes this year. Date, and circumstances.

You know what can get complicated? Navigating the waters of healthcare and insurance when you are in one place, the patient is in another and the doctors are in yet another place. We were tri-place-ed. Even though I was out of commission on the blob, I was attached at the ear to other technology, such as the cell phone and my new favorite, iMessage. You know what else can be difficult? Keeping a cell connection in the rolling hills of Virginia!

I mentioned last week that The Boy had sent me a picture of his arm, heavily decorated with petechiae, which is a symptom of low platelet counts. Not a good sign for someone who is remission from a particularly hard to treat case of chronic ITP.


Of course this was all detected on finals week, when time is short and the stress is plentiful. He had his blood drawn by the nurse at school in Chicago, simple enough, but when the results came back they set off a flurry of panic from Chicago to Michigan, that hunted me down in Virginia. Honey was even briefly involved in the phone chaos of the doctors attempting to make contact with their platelet deficient patient.

To make a long story blog friendly, there were many complications. Things like an expired blood work order, a lapse in patient care (pediatric) of three years, an extended respite of nine years from his hematologist at University of Michigan, and a health insurance that requires things like blood work orders and referrals and other things to make sure you have crossed all Ts and dotted all Is. Let’s just say there was some conversation burning up the lines between the three states.

On the advice of all doctors concerned, considering that he has been seen by exactly no one in at least three years, The Boy and The Dane travelled by train for two hours to the recommended University of Chicago. I guess universities are loyal like that. It was at this point The Boy mentioned that he had some bruising.


I have to give him props, that’s a mighty fine bruise. I also have to give him a talking to. Having a friend help you find out if your counts are low by punching you in the arm? Not his best move.

Many prayers were answered when they arrived safely at the emergency room and were seen in a timely fashion. This is a familiar pose. The Dane was doing a great job of keeping me informed, with words and pictures.


When they found out his platelet count was 8000 (normal is between 150,000 and 400,000), they decided to admit him. She said this was his “not a happy camper” face. I have seen that face before. I am very acquainted with that face.



I think he was a bit of a curiosity for them at the hospital, they said there were many herds of residents in and out of his room. He stayed for several days, had three infusions of his former medication of choice IVIG, developed a massive headache, had a cat scan, confirmed he has a brain (despite that little punching episode above), confirmed the brain was not hemorrhaging, was released from the University of Chicago, got a ride from a friend halfway home, and a taxi ever so thoughtfully provided by their church the rest of the way so he didn’t have to barf into plastic bags (that The Dane smartly brought with them) while taking public transportation. The trains of Chicago thank you too.

Almost home.


Finally home!!! They Boy said the cat had about lost his mind with lonesomeness! He had knocked his food and water bowls over, drug everything out of the closet to get a ziplock bag of food, that had been sent with him when he was hand delivered by Jip the Farm Dog and Daniel Tiger, and just generally made a mess in his trying to while away the days without his parents! The Boy said he was just moaning when he saw them!

Didn’t take long to fix all that and start filling his little heart back up with love!


They travelled back to University of Chicago on Wednesday for an appointment to meet his new doctor and have his blood drawn. His counts were not good. 28,000 is not brain hemorrhage territory, but not what you like to see after 3 doses of IVIG. They put him on steroids for a while.

He sent me this to soften the blow. The Boy needs that shirt. Or not.


So there is a lot we don’t know. Is he out of remission> Don’t know yet. If he is, where will he receive treatment? Not sure. Will his counts go up on their own? Only God knows.

There are three things we do know. He is very much loved. God has His hand on the top of that Boy’s head. And Seymour is one happy kitty to have his people home!


Thank you so much for your prayers and concern, they were greatly appreciated!



  1. Heifer Lynn said,

    May 23, 2014 at 12:13 PM

    I just love the way you write with humor even though it’s not very funny and probably near to broke your heart while you were gone. Thanks for keeping us all updated as we pray for you all!

  2. jodaley said,

    May 23, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    I’m glad things worked out so he could get the treatment he needed. I will continue to pray the count climbs up. That cat looks too comfortable in that last picture : ) Enjoy the Memorial Day weekend!

  3. Laurie said,

    May 23, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    Prayers for The Boy and hopes for a quick return to normal. I think the Dane has had a taste of “in sickness and in health” and it sounds like she came through with flying colors.

  4. Vickie said,

    May 25, 2014 at 10:51 PM

    Praying for Connor that boy.

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