I got a call early in this week from the insurance company with some very good news. First of all, they received everything they need to proceed with Patrick’s transplant listing at UNMC. It’s a matter of insurance contracts to make the switch at this point.
Secondly, they have decided that a charter flight to Omaha at the time of transplant is medically necessary.
I should be over the moon excited about this news. There’s some fine print, though, that has been keeping me awake at night. The only way that they feel that they can cover a flight is in a hospital to hospital transfer.
This means that Patrick will have to be admitted to Primary Children’s when a donor is found, take an ambulance to the airport, and then LifeFlight (an air ambulance) to Nebraska, and then an ambulance from that airport and direct admission to the hospital.
This will save us the $15,000 we expected to pay for a flight. The Life Flight alone will cost them over $50,000.
Shouldn’t I be happy?
But I can’t help but worry about this change in logistics. Omaha is still 4 hours away, and the fastest Life Flight plane can’t make it there in under 3. We have 6 hours total to get there. So add in 45 minutes to the hospital, plus admission, plus travel in ambulances.. And, well, when we get the call, we pretty much have to grab a suitcase (there will only be room for one carry on) and run to the hospital.
There won’t be time to gather family and say goodbye. There won’t be time for me to pack another bag. There won’t be room for Brian on the plane. Just a phone call, and we all drop our lives and go.
Brian will have to follow behind, probably booking whatever the earliest flight with a seat to Omaha is, after he’s packed all our bags for us and paid to check all the extra luggage.
I just keep thinking of things about this plan that scare me. Like, what if I haven’t had time to finish the laundry and we’re out of clothes. What if Patrick is at school and Brian is in a meeting? What if it’s RSV season or there’s a school bus accident or it’s new residents week or Patrick’s GI is in South America and the hospital is too busy to admit us on time? What if LifeFlight doesn’t have planes available? (I had 6 charter companies lined up, but there is only 1 Life Flight) What if I went to bed without doing the dishes and the leftovers in the fridge are old and on the brink of molding when I leave? Who will have to come in and clean up my mess and what will they think of me?
I mean, ok, these worries pale in comparison to the reality of a transplant that removes and/or replaces between 3 and 5 major organs of my son’s body. But still…
Thankfully, I came across this amazing sermon this week. (Warning the link will take you to a video broadcast of the sermon.) It was given by Elder Bednar, an apostle, and it talks about having faith to submit to God’s will.
So I’ve been trying to internalize the concepts of “Faith not to be healed” and “It is better not to shrink than to survive.” But I think this quote says it best:
“Strong faith the in Savior is submissively accepting His will and timing in our lives, even if the outcome is not what we hoped for or wanted.”
I know that we were led to take Patrick to UNMC for a new transplant evaluation. And even if there is a LOT about this new plan that worries me, ok, I’ll be honest, that terrifies me.. I am trying to learn to be more humble and submissive and to trust in a loving Heavenly Father.