Category Archives: ultrasound

Is Everything Okay? Insurance Coverage Included?


Is Everything Okay?  Insurance Coverage Included?

I asked the first question but forgot to check insurance along the way.

Usually, my six month appointment goes well, but this time when I asked her if everything was okay she said, “I don’t know.”  The next 24 hours became a blur. She ordered an ultrasound but the Women’s Center made me get a mammogram, too.  Mammograms are so painful for me.

The time leading up to the ultrasound seemed like weeks even though it was only 24 hours.

My initial reaction to everything sent me right back to where I was 6 years ago.  I was so upset.  I had a few minutes where the doubt began to creep in my mind.  When I came home I told my husband about the ultrasound. Also, I told him that if I needed a biopsy that I was going to cancel….STOP RIGHT THERE…

Then I said, “NO…I’m not going to cancel anything.  If I need to fight this battle again, I will not change my schedule.”  He encouraged me that it was going to be okay.

While waiting for the appointment, I prayed, spent some time with my grandchildren, and listened to praise and worship music.

Is everything okay?  I am thankful to report…YES, Yes it is.  I was reminded this week of just how precious life is…just how undeserving I am to have this second chance…just how blessed I am by a supportive husband and daughters…just how blessed I am by my three grandchildren…and the promise in Joel 2:25…”God can restore what is broken…”

Is everything okay?  YES!

Everything is fine with my health.  However, I just found out a couple of weeks ago that I’m being penalized for being a survivor. I went to the business office to make sure they had filed the claim with the correct Health Insurance and found out that the insurance is not covering my ultrasound and mammogram.  The person who helped me find this out is also a breast cancer survivor and she said that basically, we are being penalized for being a survivor because the insurance company would not pay for the mammogram, calling it a diagnostic screening.

Diagnostic screenings are used to prevent further progression of possible disease.  According to that policy, my insurance would rather pay for chemotherapy than a diagnostic screening to prevent needing the chemo.  I am still communicating with both the insurance and the medical center.

It is imperative that you know your coverage and question the medical team to avoid these types of charges.  I know this happens daily to unsuspecting people.  YOU are the most important advocate for yourself. Ask questions and  know your insurance policy.

Have you had this happen to you?  Leave me a comment and tell me about it.

Be Blessed.


SURPRISE! RBW Celebration!

As I drove to work, I was mentally preparing myself for the emotions of the day.  I received the great news from the ultrasound but only Doug and I knew about that report because we wanted to wait until after the surgery.  In less than 24 hours, I would endure six hours of surgery that would require three specialist.  Today, I channeled my positivity to reflect on just how grateful I was for the staff at RBW.  I wrote the staff a letter so that I would not need to say any goodbyes.  I was not pleased to miss that last three days of school but you do not argue with doctors and I learned that my health was more important than my job.

Since the staff found out about my diagnosis when they returned to school in January of 2009, they continued to support me.  The first time I wore a wig I was so self conscious and they acted like it was no big deal.  When I had to wear my favorite fuzzy hat to work, they made me feel accepted.  They provided meals every Thursday for at least five months and my family looked forward to Thursdays.  My mom and I were just talking about that last night.  It was a much needed night off for the care givers not to worry about food. Every now and then, grade levels and individuals would give me care packets, gift cards and cards of encouragement.  They loved me through those difficult months and always treated me kindly.

Real men do wear pink!
Real men do wear pink!
RBW fabulous 'lunch bunch' looking good in pink!
RBW fabulous ‘lunch bunch’ looking good in pink!

When I got to school, I noticed one pink shirt, three pink shirts, grade levels of pink shirts and eventually realized that they all wore pink shirts on my last day.  It brings me to tears 5 1/2 years later as I write this blog.  I was surrounded by support and kindness every day.

After dismissal, Mrs. Ward, Principal, told me that she needed me to go with her to the Computer Lab.  She was quite convincing so off we went.  We did go to the Computer Lab and walked straight through to the back door of the Media Center where the entire staff had gathered and made a tunnel of pink to welcome me as I entered the room. (That was a tradition I brought to the school when I came years before.  On the last day of school, the staff gathered to make a tunnel for the last bus students to walk through as they boarded the bus.  The students always loved it.)  Needless to say, I was so overwhelmed.  As I looked around the room, there was a sea of pink.  The staff was wearing pink shirts, holding pink balloons and wearing surgical masks. It was an amazing show of support.

'tunnel of support'
‘tunnel of support’
Walking through the 'tunnel of support'
Walking through the ‘tunnel of support’
RBW staff...all in pink with their surgical masks
RBW staff…all in pink with their surgical masks

My birthday is in July so we gathered to celebrate an early birthday featuring my favorite colors: pink and yellow. They arranged for me to have a month of birthdays so that I would have a card to open every day during my recovery from surgery.  They also made a money ribbon because they knew I hadn’t been able to go to the beach during chemo and that was and still is one of my favorite places to relax.

My favorite wig and all three special cakes
My favorite wig and all three special cakes
Happy Early Birthday
Happy Early Birthday
Favorite and yellow
Favorite colors…pink and yellow
It's all about the 'PINK'
It’s all about the ‘PINK’

Kindness, gratitude, compassion and joy surrounded me that day.  A journey through breast cancer or any other illness changes you.  You can allow it to change you for the good or you can become bitter.  It’s not easy!  Healing takes time.  Believe me…CANCER SUCKS, but life goes on and happiness is a choice.  I choose to be happy every day and I choose to SMILE!

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Be Blessed.

An Unbelievable Report

It was unbelievable news!
It was unbelievable news!

A few days before my surgery, the breast surgeon ordered an ultrasound of my right breast and right axilla, under arm, so she could know the progress I had made with chemotherapy. I went to the Women’s Center and sat down until it was my turn.  When I was called, I changed into the robe and sat in the next waiting room. All of the ladies sat there awkwardly and tried not to stare at each other.  Then my name was called and I walked down the hall to the another waiting room.  One thing I have learned through all of these medical appointments is that you hurry up to get there and wait.

Finally, I was called to the room where the ultrasound would take place.  I recognized the technician.  She was the one who was guiding the ultrasound machine during my biopsy.  I laid down on the table and she began the ultrasound of the right breast, snapping pictures rapidly and then on to the right axilla (under arm) where she took even more pictures rapidly.

The Ultrasound

Our conversation went like this:

Tech – You must have had some good chemo.

Me – Chemo and prayer

Tech – Yeah, that positive thinking, meditation and prayer stuff works to help people remain positive through this.

….and she walked out of the room to talk to the doctor

Doctor – Do you remember us?  We did your biopsy.

Me – Yes, I remember you.

Doctor – You have made good progress.  Your tumors were very large and they have significantly changed.

Me – I believe in prayer and miracles.

The doctor just looked at me and finished writing her notes.  They both left the room and I got dressed.

My Response

When I got to my car, I just sat there and cried tears of joy.  Just a few weeks ago I was fussing at God for having to go through this and now I was overwhelmed with thankfulness.  I was not deserving of His grace.  I called Doug and told him the good news and explained that I was crying tears of joy.  I sat there at least 10 minutes to regain my composure.

I knew that I would have good results from the surgery and this was just the confirmation that I needed.  God is so good!

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Be Blessed.