Today was a long day for us. Most of it was very good and positive. After a very rough start there, Mary is now settling in well at the Residential Treatment Facility (RTF). She is starting to trust the staff and make friends with the other patients. She has been there almost a week. At times it seems like it has only been a day or two and at other times, it feels like an eternity. We have had a lot of opportunity to watch the staff at work with the kids and are impressed with their ability to handle the toughest cases with grace and kindness. My heart is still heavy for her and the long road she has ahead of her, but I feel like I can breathe without the excruciating pain that was present last week.
One of the main things on our agenda today was the master planning meeting. The best thing I can compare it to was an IEP meeting but with all the medical and behavioral terminology thrown into it. It was great to set some measurable goals for Mary to achieve which will be an outward sign of the inward healing that is taking place. It is good to know what medications we will be taking away and what medications we will be trying next. It is good to meet all the team players and know that we are all on the same page. One of the things that was mentioned to us today and kind of took my by surprise was the idea that Mary could possibly be high functioning asperger's in addition to all the other diagnoses that she has. I know that asperger's and autism are commonly part of the mix with bipolar kids, I just had never thought that Mary fit into that category. It is something we will have to explore further but would explain part of why she has been so difficult to medicate.
The next step of the day was our first family therapy session. It went really well and I think that we will all like working with the counselor who has been assigned to our case.
Everything was going along so well... until we got a call from the admissions department regarding our insurance coverage. UGH!!! We knew going into this that our insurance would most likely not pay for everything. We were not prepared for just how little they were going to pay. Don't get me wrong... I am extremely thankful that we have insurance and for every penny that they will pay. Everyone has been very helpful in trying to cover as much as possible so that our out-of-pocket expenses would be manageable. However, the cost at this point looks insurmountable. And yet, what choice do we have??? This is the ONLY viable option for her health and recovery right now. Can we put a value on her life???? Can we say, as her parents, that our pocketbook will only cover this much, so you have to go without the care that you need??? The thing that frustrates me the most is this... if Mary had cancer or diabetes and had to be hospitalized for months at a time to receive medical treatment and recover, it would be covered by insurance. But because this is a mental health issue (which is still just as biologically real as cancer or diabetes) the insurance puts limits on what they will pay for. They can put a value on her life just because her health issues are not as visible as other health issues, even though they are just as deadly.
As we were driving home, God whispered to my heart and reminded me that He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. This comes as no surprise to Him. He's got a plan. He is a God who makes the impossible, possible. I need to trust Him in this. In my human nature, I have asked Him to start selling off some of those cows because one of His children desperately needs the cash. I'm sure He got a chuckle out of that...