Monday, October 3, 2011

Dear Insurance, I've used you wisely. Love, Natalie

Remember that one time I thought I was having a kidney stone but then I thought it was just the pain from the UTI? Well, it wasn't a UTI and it was in fact a kidney stone. The realization that it was a kidney stone was about 2 months in the making. Because about every 2 weeks, that blinding pain would hit my kidney area and I wouldn't be able to pee.

It's shocking how many times I visited my doctor in a month. And every time she would ask me, "when is the last time you had sex?" Whenever I would tell her never, she never seemed to believe me. It was like she wanted to catch me in a lie. I mean, I think she understood my religious beliefs when she saw my garments and starting talking about different kinds I should try. But whatever, maybe she was just being thorough.

After my 2nd time meeting with her, she told me I needed to see a specialist. Now, normally I wouldn't be concerned about seeing a specialist, but this time it was different. I had just had a meeting at work and learned that our insurance was switching over to an HSA (Health Savings Plan). For those of you that don't know what that means, I'll put it in lamen terms: I pay a lot more to go to the doctor. In fact, I pay EVERYTHING up until my $1,500 deductible is reached. Yikes. So, you can imagine when I heard the word specialist the dollars signs starting flashing in my head.

My insurance was going to be switching over on October 1. It was September 22nd. She put in a referral and said they would try and get me in before Oct 1. Well, September 25th came and back came the blinding pain and the inability to pee. I called my doctor first thing the next morning to get the phone number to the urologist they referred me to. I immediately called and was able to get in on Wednesday, Sept 27th.

Wednesday came and I was feeling fine. I kind of felt stupid going to the doctor when I had no symptoms. When I explained to him the problem, he said he thought it had a kidney stone lodged somewhere - but the only way to find out is to get a ct scan. Dollar sign. Dollar sign. LOTS OF DOLLAR SIGNS!!!

I asked how quickly I could get one. I might as well take this insurance plan for all it's worth. And so, Friday, September 30th at 7 am, I had a ct scan. Friday at 1:30 pm my doctor calls me to tell me I have a 5mm kidney stone stuck in my ureter and that I would need to get it surgically removed.

I googled what a 5mm kidney stone looked like. And also, what a ureter was. I'm not very smart.

Knowing the insurance timeline I was under, my doctor said he could get me in for surgery that night.

And so, at 6pm Friday, September 30th, I checked myself into the hospital. I was completely unprepared for what I was about to do. Because when they showed me to my room and told me they would be back to give me an IV, I about passed out.

This was me before I got my IV:

This was me after

And well, I didn't take a picture of myself AFTER the surgery, because I was crying and wanted to die. When I signed up for this, I thought I would get a Valium and they would do the ultra sonic sound waves thing to break up the stone. Then all I would have to do is drink gallons of water to flush it out.

My upcoming procedure was not so kind. Pretty much they went UP my urethra (TMI?), through my bladder and into my ureter. Then they used a laser to blast the stone into tiny, passable pieces. THEN, they inserted a stint into my ureter to keep it open so that stones would come out. AND THEY LEFT THE STINT IN.

So as I woke up, I felt like my crotch was on fire and that someone was pinching it. This is when I started crying and asking for my mom. Seriously, it's like I was 5.

I eventually made it back to my room where my mom was patiently waiting for me. She told me I did great and even had a present for me. My kidney stone!! Ok, not the whole thing, just two itty bitty pieces of it.

Finally, around midnight I was ready to leave. I spent the weekend at my parents being pampered by my lovely mother. What would have I done with out her? Even though I am 29, I still need my mom like I was 5 years old. A girls gotta have her mama.

So there you have it. Nothing like soaking my insurance plan for all it's worth until the very end.

1 comment:

Let the Good Times Roll said...

I hate insurance companies, so YES Natalie, way to take them for all their worth! Love that you got in on the 30th, lol! And so sorry you had to go through that. I hear the pain is horrendous. How is it you can look so beautiful in a hospital bed?