One Week to Go

One week from today I’ll be laying my head down on a pillow in hotel Simon Cancer Center.  The only unknown at this point is what will be screwed up with my room.

2B and I Get Along Just Fine
This last treatment has been pretty good to me.  I would say I’ve felt better this time around than any other.  Granted, that could be  because 2A was the worst I’ve felt after chemo so this time just seems better.  We’ll have to see if 2A was an anomaly, or if the A cycle just likes to beat me up.
With Apologies to IU Health
Apparently I upset someone with my last post about IUH owing me a dollar.  I say this because shortly after I wrote that, we received a collections notice for an IUH bill.  Now I may at times not pay an IUH bill the same month I receive it, but that is simply because I’m usually waiting for some charges to work themselves out.  I usually always pay by the 2nd time I receive a bill and I would most certainly pay attention to a final notice.  Try as I might, I just couldn’t track down the charge we were being taken to collections for.  I keep all my IUH bills and this particular charge wasn’t showing up on any of them.
Stymied by the lack of documentation on where I went wrong, I gave my good friends in billing services a call.  They are good friends because it seems I have to call them often to get things fixed.  Anywho after some typing and searching a very nice lady was able to track down the charge.  Here’s the rub though…IUH only ever sent me one bill (or so they say, I still can’t find this bill in my records).  They never sent a 2nd bill or even a final notice.  Just one bill and then off to collections the charge went.  The lady apologized, as this charge never should have gone to collections.  She ended up writing the charge off for me.  Unfortunately it was only a $150 physician visit and not the $90,000 hospital visit.
Man vs.  Machine
I get my labs drawn Mondays and Thursdays.  I’ve always gotten my labs drawn Mondays and Thursdays.  Ever since my original discharge, I’ve been told to get my labs drawn Mondays and Thursdays.  So I was a bit surprised when I had the following conversation with the lab last Thursday.
Me: I’m here to get my labs drawn
Tech: Hi Mr. Culross, let me get you set up
Me: Ok
Tech: Mr. Culross, you’re actually not supposed to have labs until Friday.
Me: Really?  I always get my labs done on Mondays and Thursdays
Tech:  Well the computer has you scheduled for Friday.
Me:  That’s weird, when did the schedule change?
Tech:  It’s always been scheduled for Friday, but we’ve drawn your blood on Thursdays because that’s when you show up.  We can’t do that anymore.
Me:  Oh, but my doctor told me to get blood drawn on Thursdays.
Tech:  Yes, but the computer says you should get it done on Fridays.
Me: Yes, but my doctor told me to do it on Thursdays.
Tech:  I know, but the computer automatically schedules your labs and it scheduled them for Friday.
Me:  But my doctor told me to get it done on Thursdays
Tech:  I know, but the computer has always had it scheduled for Friday.
Me: But my doctor is a person, and he wants it done on Thursdays
You can see the trend developing here.  Now I do want to say that the tech did a wonderful job helping me out.  She called her supervisor and tried to get a hold of my doctor so I could get my labs drawn on time.  The funny thing to me though is that Dr. Cripe can go to 4 years of undergrad, 3 years of med school, do a residency, and complete a fellowship, yet a patient is just about sent home because a computer says to draw labs on a different day.  It’s a good thing the computer didn’t tell them I was there for breast implants, or I might have walked out with some new C cups.
A Duck Dynasty Prayer
Thank you God for each day.  I do not know the time or the place when I will be called home, so I am thankful for the time that I have.  While surviving leukemia consumes me, I could just as easily be harmed while driving in to work or cheering on people in a race.   I do not know when.  I do not know where.  I do not know what will cause me to leave this earth, so I am thankful for the time that I have with my friends and family.  Help me to use it wisely and help me to live each day in a way that honors you.  Thank you for another day.  Amen.

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