Thursday, July 12, 2012


Maria's View- 

This morning, Chris took Big G to Drama camp and also took Griffin to his Cardiology appointment.  I stayed at home with Little G because she recently had a stomach virus and I want to keep her close for a few more days.  I'll let Chris share the details with you on how the Cardio. went!  It's great news, though!

An amazing thing happened today.  For lunch, I chopped up chicken breast, a cheese stick, and a nectarine for the little ones' lunches.  Griffin would eat everything off of the spoon, but when I got a phone call, I placed a piece of cheese on his high chair so that I could keep him happy, and he threw it across the room!  Do you understand how amazing this is?!  He chose to NOT eat something.  I couldn't even hear what the nurse was telling me on the phone, I was so shocked!  I put a piece on the spoon and gave it to him, and he opened his mouth for me to shovel it in.  I didn't, because I was still experimenting.  I backed the spoon off, he didn't protest, so I dropped the cheese onto the high chair tray, and he picked it up and threw it across the room.  AWESOME!  No cheese for my dude.  So proud of him!  So, if I'm spoon feeding him, he feels the need to eat every bite.  If he has a choice, he doesn't feel the need. 

About the nurse that called me, I bet you are wondering, right?  Well, she called to tell us that Griffin's endoscopy procedure is scheduled for July 26 to test for Celiac Disease.  I'm pretty anxious about this and looking forward to it, too.  I want him to feel great and if he has Celiac, I'm sure that the food we are giving him doesn't make him feel so great.  However, we can't change his diet now because it will throw the test off.  So we are in a holding pattern until we get some answers.

But anyway, that's about all I've got for today!  It's a rainy, chilly day here in Germany and I miss the warmth!  Chris is off through Saturday and I have a friend coming over to take a walk with me tonight if the weather holds out.  Looking forward to it!

Enjoy your Thursday!!

Chris's View-

Yeah, we thought the GI appointment was scheduled for the 26th, but more on that later.

This morning, I had to hit the ground running.  I got up and did my thing, while Maria got the two eldest G's ready.  I dropped Big G off at her drama camp, then me & Middle G took off to find the hospital in K-town where his appointment was.  The hospital was tucked back in a residential area and if I wouldn't have had a GPS, I'm sure I would've never found the place.  Parking was a hassle at first, till I found the tiny spaced parking garage... but then again, all European parking spots are small.  I finally got parked and found where I was supposed to go.

Everyone there was AMAZING!  I so wish our military health care providers were this good!  We got to see the head of the Pediatric Department, plus he's a Cardiologist, so that is awesome!  We got settled in the first room and they hooked him up for an EKG (or is it an EEG?) and the nurse explained that he needed to be still for 10 seconds... uh... yeah... that's not happening!  LOL!  He was all over the place.  Finally I had to basically straddle him to keep him still.  She finally told me that he was finished and to just put his shirt back on and wait in the hallway for a second.

Literally, within seconds, we were called into the doctor's room.  He had the over bed heater on for Griffin and it was nice & comfy in there... a little too toasty after awhile though.  Griffin sat contently on the bed, eating a box of raisins.  He really likes his raisins, let me tell you!  The doctor came in and examined him, moving joints, listening to his heart & breathing, squeezing on his head... wait a second... this isn't just a normal cardiology referral, this guy ACTUALLY CARES!  Wow!  He did a full up exam, asked in-depth questions, even questioning why he is taking the medicine he is on for his latent Tb when he has a clean x-ray.  He was great & Griffin seemed to really respond to him.

Next, he pulled out the ultrasound machine.  Griffin wasn't having any of that!  Well, until the doctor handed me this little electronic, light-up toy that simply drew Griffin in.  He was mesmerized by this toy.  He was able to do whatever check he wanted to, as long as I was running that toy.  He checked out his heart and said, "For his stature, his heart is pristinely perfect."  EXCELLENT!  There is no septum issues, no valve issues, no flow issues, no holes, no murmurs, no irregularities, nothing!  Awesome... so now, let's all breathe a collective sigh of relief!

So, I bring Griffin home & go back to get Gracie & brought her back home.  While I was home dropping Griffin off & eating lunch, Maria got the call that we have to take Griffin to the Pediatric clinic at the base to get an MRSA swab done.  This is a standard thing that is required for any overnight procedures at German hospitals.  This tests for a type of staph infection that is antibiotic resistant.  Oh yeah, this pertains to his GI referral that we thought was scheduled for the 26th.  Well, I took Griffin to the base, dropped off some papers, got the swab done, and was waiting to speak to the doctor about a separate issue when Griffin decided to melt down.  It was honestly the worst he has acted out that was not over food.

After the doctor saw us, I walked down to the TRICARE office to get a copy of the authorization to go to Homburg teaching hospital, where his GI appointment was scheduled, since we got told we had the appointment date.  I ask at the counter, nope... not there.  So, I ask to speak with the TRICARE representative who has been working the case.  She called me back and apologized that the appointment still wasn't scheduled.  We have been working on trying to get this appointment scheduled for well over a week now.  So, not being ready is not the answer I was looking to hear.  So, she called the hospital with me sitting there.  I guess they still didn't want to schedule it until they got the results from the MRSA swab, but they went ahead & scheduled it for the 19th... wait... didn't they tell Maria the 26th?!?!?  Something is going on.  Not to mention, Griffin has his developmental peds appointment that morning.  She said it was the only thing available until mid-August.  Unsat in my book!  We have been waiting on this forever now.  Next, she floored me!

This next piece of info literally kicked me in the junk, then spit in my eyes while I was down.  Wait for it... we could not stay with him in the hospital unless we pay out of pocket for it... an estimated $200 at the very least, that is not claimable or reimbursable by TRICARE!  Okay, you have got to be joking me!  This is a 3 year old child, who was just brought here from an orphanage.  He would instantly think we left him in another orphanage, thus resulting in the possible regression of every bit of progress we have made since we got him home and a complete loss of trust.  Not to mention, this will damage us too, as we are all still going through the bonding process.  I told her I need to know who to file a complaint with, since I cannot believe TRICARE will not cover this expense, being as I have no other option but to pay the fee out of pocket, since the base GI clinic will only see patients that are 18 or older. 
Then she tells me that he would check in on the 19th between 10 & 11 am.  He would be pre-opped that day, then the next, he would get his procedure, then they would observe him overnight, then he'd get to go home the next day... if there are no complications.  Wait a second, he's getting a scope shoved down his throat and biopsy taken to check why his celiac markers were elevated, not getting a heart bypass!  I get it, and I am glad they are trying to protect my child, and I could totally buy a one-night stay, but not 3 days and 2 nights.  That's overkill, and possible insurance fraud in my opinion.  Even the pediatrician at the base hospital thinks it's too long. 

A little upset, I asked if we were locked in to using the Homburg teaching hospital.  She said that she could try to check at the hospital I used for his cardiology appointment.  Sure enough we can, but they are going to require the same stay, and they will charge us to stay with him in that hospital too.  At least I know the caliber of the doctor who will be doing the procedure... the head of the pediatric department, who is also a cardiologist, who I guess can also do a scope & biopsy, who has experience with my son, who genuinely cares, who is a kind man, & one of the best physicians I have met in 35 years... we are going to have to suck it up on this one.

See ya'll later!


  1. Wait, if the parent wants to stay to help care for their child THE PARENTS have to pay??? I'm stunned. I'm bewildered. I'm furious. I must be misunderstanding this. Are they feeding you during this time? I hope it's prime rib or something.

  2. You know, it almost sounds as if we have to pay if we want to be in his room PERIOD, to even visit him! They want us to drop him off! Of course we will pay the $200 to be with him, but it just doesn't make sense to us either. They are charging people for visitation. To me, that sounds so wrong.

  3. i dont see how they expect folks to walk out on their children like that,,,what if it was a family who could not afford to pay,,that policy should be changed,,it is just mind blowin


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