Out of Gas…And Patience

My tank has been empty lately. I’ve had little energy or enthusiasm for writing, cleaning, dog walking, or even getting out to a movie. I’m not sure if this is post-op fatigue that is normal for a month after neuroablation, or if it’s related to the stomach bug I had (that may still be lingering), or if I’m just worn out from all this cancer bullshit.

Photo on 4-25-17 at 9.41 AM #2Whatever it is, I’d like to get myself out of this funk. So I brought the Macbook along to oncology today to force myself to write and I’m currently sitting in the chemo chair, getting my Herceptin and Perjeta infusions. My oncologist, Dr. K., is on vacation so we met with the oncology nurse today. She’s concerned about my white blood cell counts being a little low, so I’ll be back next week for more bloodwork to check on things and to get my Xgeva shot (a medication I receive every few months that keeps my bones strong).

I also had a CT scan of chest, abdomen, and pelvis last week, and a bone scan. All showed no progression of existing metastases and no new involvement, which is great. Three cheers for Herceptin and Perjeta getting me to another four month scan milestone with minimal side effects (mostly fatigue…but that’s what naps are for). From the neck down I seem to be doing really well.

But how am I doing from the neck up, you ask? Well, I was supposed to have another post-op brain MRI at Yale this Thursday to check my progress, but my health insurer (Cigna) has denied coverage. Cigna says I have to wait three months until they will cover another MRI of my brain, even though my neurosurgeon Dr. Chiang appealed the decision with her clinical rationale. So I did what people do these days to get their customerservicecustomer service needs met – I bitched about it on Twitter. Cigna’s social media manager emailed me within 5 minutes of the tweet and asked me to send them further details so they could “look into it.” We’ll see what becomes of it. It would be nice if the insurance companies would honor my own doctor’s recommendation over some random benefits management M.D. who has only a surface level understanding of my individual case or needs.

In completely unrelated and much happier news, Jasper came home from school yesterday and told us he’s been asked to go to junior prom with a classmate. Unfortunately, prom is this Friday and he doesn’t own a suit or sport jacket, much less a tux. But that’s a dilemma that’s fun to fix (although you should ask me how much fun I’m having when it’s Thursday night and we’re still running all over Connecticut looking for formalwear).

15 thoughts on “Out of Gas…And Patience

  1. You are amazing! Thank you for bringing the MacBook and forcing yourself to write. I’m so sorry for all you’re going through and pray for you and that awesome strength of yours daily. Way to go using social media to get to the insurance company – I love it! Fingers crossed they reverse their decision. Good luck finding a tux for Jasper – can’t wait to see pictures. Love you friend. Xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tweeting my displeasure is my favorite form of dissension. And it has never failed to get attention from the people at whom I was aiming. Here’s hoping those idiots get it together! I feel that particular pain too because my insurance recently did the same thing – which is a first for me. I’m dumbfounded that a specialist I have never seen before ordering a test she think necessary isn’t all they need to say yes. They’d rather waste time, money and potentially my health going through an appeal. But I’m letting the doc do that battle and focusing on the good stuff. And thanks for reminding me to make sure there is no sudden junior prom in my future! You are the 2nd mom in one week who I know has had to save the day with formal wear for her prom-going son!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. If Cigna does not approve In in for a full force social media blast. I hope your energy comes back soon. So happy Jasper is having fun at school. I want pics of him in his tux. Love and miss you! Marlo xxoo

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You are so cool, Paula. Your strength, determination and humor in the midst of everything is truly a gift to US. How lucky are we to know someone like YOU? Keep on kicking ass, and let me know when you can tolerate a lasagna.🤔 xoxo ~ Donna

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Bella, please know that I think of you often, your courage, your ability to find strength even when the tank is empty. If you haven’t already seen the film (on Netflix), A Street Cat Named Bob, it is a feel good movie that involves, well, a cat. Based on a true story. Lots of love and strength for you. And if you need me to call the mafia about Cigna, I got my cousins in Palermo at the ready. Theresa

    Liked by 1 person

  6. A limerick comment…. cause that’s what I do !

    Insurance in this country sucks.
    All they want is to save a few bucks.
    You blast them on twitter
    And things hit the shitter!
    Now go find Jasper a tux!

    Liked by 1 person

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