Monday, January 29, 2007

Drum roll, please.

Blaine got the phone call at 3:30 this afternoon (good thing I hadn’t been holding my breath since 8am or anything) and the results of last week’s cat scan are:


Hmmm. Imagine that. Picture me, with a look of surprise and astonishment on my face.


Inconclusive? Wow, go figure.

So, now they want him to have an MRI done.

Let’s review, shall we?

Two weeks ago:

Doctor orders a cat scan.
We wait on the insurance authorization and referral.
Finally get appointment at imaging center.
They can’t start an IV, so the test is done without contrast.
We wait almost a week for the results, which are inconclusive.

NOW, the plan is:

Doctor has ordered an MRI.
We will wait on the insurance authorization and referral.
He will go to the appointment at the same imagine center.
When (not if, but WHEN) they can’t get an IV started, they will do the test without contrast.
We will wait for the results.

I’m glad to see we have a fresh game plan and are taking decisive action.

Who wants to guess whether or not the MRI will be inconclusive, and that ten days from now we’ll be no farther ahead than we are now.

I feel like a very big, very slow, very impotent, very frustrated hamster on the wheel of life.

I seriously need a drink.

And did you know that if you have stitches from your finger-quote-skin-cancer-surgery-end-finger-quote, that is considered an open wound and you are not allowed to donate blood? And sometimes you won’t find that out until after you’ve driven half an hour to the donor center and filled out the questionnaire and had all your vitals taken and had your finger poked not once but twice because that stupid blood always rises back up to the top of the solution don’t I eat enough red meat and you’ve answered every single question about whether or not you’ve ever had sex with a goat in Africa who ever had sex for money with a needle using heroin addict who ever had an organ transplant in the UK in the last five years???

And then, you’ll be asked to come back a week later, when the stitches are out.

Twenty bucks says I’m able to donate blood before we know anything about Blaine.

Any takers?

PS. Try to contain your own surprise that I wasn’t accepted at art school, as per my surprised-look face drawing. You *did* know that was a surprised face, right?


Donna said...

I, for one, LOVE your illustration! :0) Some times I do NOT love the medical establishment. Here's to somebody at the insurance company accidentally growing a brain cell and getting this done right and right now.

scanmom said...

Well, crap.....

kim said...

OH, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD! How FREAKIN' ridiculous is this going to get...Quasi and Mrs. Quasi, I'm resorting to heavy prayers.

By the way, Kristie, I recognized your surprise face right away; I swear it's the same one of my drawing of a tree--the one with two straight lines topped by a half-moon squiggly line. I know we'd ROCK the art world, but we must remain focused on Quasi...

kim said...

Gee, I also rock the typing world.

What I meant up there is,

I recognized your surprise face right away; I swear it's the same one that is LOOKING AT my drawing of a tree...


Cathy said...

I cannot believe this!!! Maybe Dr. McPersonality Disorder can write the four magic words on the order....STAT! (actually ASAP might be cheaper!)
I love your illustration! It actually looks like my face after getting a kidney squashing hug by a 1st grader this morning.
I'm praying to the mighty Insurance Gods that you will have an MRI (complete with a good IV stick) by the end of the week!!!
PPHHFFTT....just popped open another DDP in your honor....wonder how it would taste with a wee bit of amaretto??

Kristin Hicks said...

Love the picture.

Somehow, I'm not surprised in the least after reading your blog for the past 2+ years.

Tipping my drink to you tonight!

Cheryl said...

You will NOT be running off to any beaches, without picking me up first.
I swear, if you leave me here, I will HUNT YOU DOWN!!!

Gina said...

Kristie, I'm an oncology nurse. I have experience treating both children and adults. A CT without contrast is, in most cases, kinda useless. My opinion, but try not to worry yet. The inconclusive result is not a shock to me at all.

Insurance companies are so frustrating. Seriously, do you really think the RECEPTIONIST who decides whether your husband gets an MRI has ANY idea that it might be urgent? And all you receptionists out there, I'm not slamming you....its just that we should all be given jobs based on our training. For instance, it would be a bad idea to call me for your next typing emergency. Somehow the insurance companies got the idea that the people approving referrals don't really need any medical training. I'm just wondering when the insurance companies are gonna let YOUR DOCTOR decide when stuff should get done. Its just an idea, a novel one, I know. Guess we can all see why I got turned down for that job as VP of Tricare : )

Leeann said...

I am so sorry that you don't have any news yet.
That sucks to the moon and back!
I have been reading your stuff enough to hear the serious frustation underneath all the humor..hang in there. I know you will, you have no choice in the matter, really!

Great big hugs to you.

Jeri from hawaii said...

Oh for Pete's sake! While we were waiting for the results of Wes' CT and MRI tests everyone kept saying "no news is good news." Yeah, like I believe THAT or that it makes you feel any better...I believe that's just what people say when they don't know what to say.

Ok, I don't know what to say either, but I will be a little more realistic and try something like: "Hey, girlfriend, this SO sucks! You deserve a large, cold drink of your choice...and don't forget, no matter what, we are all praying for you and Blaine. Hang in there." I'm sure my words don't come close to making things right, but at least you know that I get it.

Anonymous said...

Kristie --

You don't know me, but I feel like I know you because I have been reading your blog for at least 2 years now. There is not a day that I don't come to your blog once or maybe even twice to see what you have to say. When I saw your drawing today, I laughed out loud! I can only imagine how frustrated you must be. I am sorry that you are having to go through all of this. It really does SUCK!
I am hoping that there will be an end to this madness soon! But, for some reason...I am doubting it. Hang in there. Thanks for making me laugh each and every day!

Kelley from Arlington, TX

Sarah said...

Good Lord, Escoes.
Can't you guy cut a freakin' break?
And AMEN AMEN AMEN to Gina about insurance.

You guys are in my prayers.
I hope this big suckfest ends soon for ya'll.

vanbinsbergen said...

You forgot the tattoo you got in the HepB infested ear pearcing parlor that also prohibits you donating blood. Praying for great and conclusive results. Can't wait to see the accompanying illustration. :)~

Anonymous said...

Couldn't they have left the IV in his arm once they found it? None of this is funny, but being a regular donor I had to laugh when I read......’ve answered every single question about whether or not you’ve ever had sex with a goat in Africa who ever had sex for money with a needle using heroin addict who ever had an organ transplant in the UK in the last five years???
Isn't that the truth???
I will definitely keep the whole Escoe family (especially mom and day) in my prayers.
BTW your art work looks like that "Scream" picture, or whatever it's called. You know the one that they made a halloween mask of?
Anyway, good job!
Hang in there.

Anonymous said...

oops typo here, I meant mom and dad and can someone please tell me why there is a handicap symbol next to the word verification cell?
Thanks, Janice

Darcie said...

Ok. This crap sandwich is too stinkin big. Even with a DDP to wash it down with.

I am so sorry you are in limbo hell. I can not imagine how frustrating and nerve-racking it has got to be.

Lots of prayers for sanity, speedy scheduling and most importantly that the mass is something BEGNIN. Even if it IS in an ESCOE.

Hugs to Quasi.

JoAnn said...

You know how you frame your kids art work and hang it in the house? Well, I think your drawing is frame worthy because truly, doesn't it just sum up the past couple of years of your life or so? I do think its an awesome picture by the way. I totally feel your frustration and what you wrote is so right on. Hang in there. ( Handing you a big bag of M&M's and a Diet Dr. Pepper.- Enjoy!)

cakeburnette said...

I love your picture, but I have to admit I thought one of your kids drew it...sorry!

Good grief, Tricare sucks so much. I hope you get authorization SOON and a decent scan or whatever that tells you something definitive!

Hang in there!

Anonymous said...

Hi there!

Chances are you will not remember me. I had emailed you many moons ago about my daughter having ALL and when she finished her treatment I was diagnosed with a salivary gland cancer. Yeah, I was no help to you or Blaine on the radiation because he got his before I did. I wanted so bad to help you but I thought I'd be useless. The only thing I could do is ask if Blaine had his taste back and is his skin as weird feeling like it's stretched and moist/dry at the same time. And when do the crappy mouth sores/bubbles go away!? Mine finally did in about October, I think?? And how weird it feels to have your earwax duct zapped and have a dry ear!
Anyway, the reason I am typing this is because...well first let me say I know everyone is different, but I finished my radiation at the end of July. In August I felt a little bump close to my shoulder, about the size of a pea. I wanted to ignore it because I just couldn't deal with the thought of "what if it's?" anymore. I am alternating between my ENT and radiologist every other month and finally in December, after the second little knot came up I told my ENT about it. The first one was now about the size of a grape. My ENT freaked that I hadn't told him and sent me immediately for scans. Besides all the nodules that showed up on my thyroid -[I know, weeee, they want that out in 6 months] they couldn't figure what the knots on my shoulder might be. So, I had surgery to remove them the week before last and four tumors were removed. Same thing happened with us about the W.A.I.T.I.N.G. Finally, it came back as lipomas...very thankfully it was benign. I am hoping and praying and hoping and praying some more that Blaine's is benign too. I suppose I'm just thinking there's so much similarities that hopefully he'll have the same outcome.
I hate that you have to deal with all of this madness! Especially when I am sure you just want to be normal and just live normal with out all of this bullsh*t. Even more especially, when you are trying to do something wonderful like giving your own blood and still you're damned.
You know, speaking of drinks, the one that gets me by is one called "Absolut Stress". Oh the irony. You may not like it but it's seen me through some times and I wanted to share it with you.
1 1/2 oz Absolut® vodka
1/2 oz peach schnapps
1/2 oz coconut liqueur
1 1/2 oz cranberry juice
1 1/2 oz pineapple juice

Gah. I'm lame. I can't believe I've just posted the mix for you. But I'm going to go fix me another one in two shakes. And when I raise my glass, it's gonna be to you and your family and hopes that you *all* stay cancer free for EVER & Blaine gets all his other medical (ear, teeth) taken care of. Maybe I am a little tipsy now because it definitely sounds like it. I am sorry for rambling on your comment section.

Please take care,
Tomika in Alabama

Pam Doughty said...

Well, I think the picture does really sum it up. I think you should print it up as a placard that you can hold up when the doctors give you all the "inconclusive" info. "Oh, no, Dr. Bill.. not again!!!". (You have to be old enough to have watched "Saturday Night Live" maaany years ago to get that one..). Seriously, I think all of us who read your blog, followed Kendrie's page, and feel like you're family, well.. we ache for you. We WANT to read that "all clear" message that means that you can finally declare victory over the beast. We know.. it ain't over til it's over... but still.. we all just want to hear the docs say "no evidence of disease", or "clear scans", or something like that, for Blaine. And I do believe we will.. once your doctors can actually get their act together and figure out how to deal with all of Blaine's challenges. Til then.. well, I'm praying... along with many others. Peace...

Anonymous said...

I guess that life is not fair. Someone told me that long ago, but I tried to ignore the comment. "This is not fair." I was trying to relax before I went to sleep tonight. You update does not relax me at all! I guess this calls for a new card to Blaine from "Postcard Cindy", he deserves one. It will go out tomorrow. In the meantime, eat some chocolate!

Postcard Cindy

PS.. the word verification looks like something I would say after readinig you latest entry!

Anna in IL said...

Well, my mind is always in the gutter, so I did not think it was a surprised face. But a surprised face does match the blog entry much more appropriately!

I have to admit, when you said that they did the test without contrast, I had a gut feeling that there wouldn't be any conclusive results.

I can't imagine how much this sucks for all of you. I hope that the MRI can be done quickly, show that there are no problems, and you can all get back on the road to recovery and reconstruction.

Kerry said...

Hi Kristie,

I'm new to posting, but have been reading Kendrie's site on and off for years and love your blog. I meant to respond to your beautiful tribute to Catie, but my computer time can be hit and miss due to my very active toddler.

Anyways, I'm an Army brat. My retired officer father is dependent on the VA in so many ways and my brother is an Air Force officer. I get the insurance/military process frustration big time.

My father has late stage Alzheimer's and is very difficult to take anywhere much less the VA for his doctor's visits. After years of literally wrestling my father in to and out of the car causing him, my mother and myself much stress and anguish, we found out from a casual off-hand comment from a staffer at the clinic that my father was eligible to have the nurse practitioner see him at his care home for regular check-ups and non-emergency illnesses. We found out that he had been eligible for this all along and everyone was "surprised" we weren't aware of this useful and convenient alternative to our HELLISH trips across town to the VA. They were so very lucky my 5'2", 110 lb mother was not armed!

I will have to leave my negative experiences in being excluded from giving blood for another post. I am glad you and Kendrie are well. Looking forward to Blaine joining you both in that category.

Take care.

P.S. I love Tomika in AL just diving right in to that Absolut recipe - I miss living in the South!

Lisa said...

How ************ difficult can this be? I'm speechless and spluttering into the morning bucket of coffee in front of me. I actually think - even though the system is in 'crisis' (according to our media) our National Health Service would actually have given you a dignosis by now - and that is amazing because we brits are apparently aiming to have a medical service as good as yours! Yikes. Oh have a prayer, take two, even God must be frustrated by now! Love to you all - your humour as always is beautiful.

Anonymous said...

speechless.. that's me. and that's unusual.

Rosemary in Albany NY

Elena from Mansfield, TX said...

On the other side of surprised, you can draw "pensive". Then you can decide which side is appropriate to hold up. You know that when they get the results the first reaction will still be surprised...because they even finally have the freakin things!!!

Cindy said...

Kristie - you crack me up. I don't know how you can take so much cr*p handed to you and your family and still laugh over all of it. I read on a caringbridge site "life may not always be the party we hope for, but while we're here we might as well dance." I think that truly applies to you!

I have to come to your site at least once a day for my daily dose of Kristie-isms. Someday you need to turn all of this into a book. In the meantime, we will all enjoy your wit without giving you the royalties!

And kudos for trying to give blood. There isn't much I can do to impact the world, but I can donate blood regularly - and that can impact someone's life.

Connie F-G said...

This entry sounds amazingly like another one or two you've done about Blaine. Did you just cut and paste?

Hope things go a little more quickly this time!


Pamela Earley said...

Hoping Blaine gets some resolution soon - for his sake as well as for the rest of y'all. Still so excited for Kendrie!! You go girl! And hey, if Kristie is now cancer free - that is 2 out of 3. Baby steps now to get that last 3rd taken care of.

praying for peace, patience, and quick work from the medical establishment.

Keep praying for Matthew Butterfield as he is starting his chemo.

briana said...

I just got caught up from the past few days. Sorry to hear that the results of Blaine's tests are inconclusive. Hopefully you'll know something after the next round of tests.

And I have to go back to the basketball entry and how serious these sports get. Dalton plays soccer - serious soccer - that's his sport and he plays in a competitive league. But, to help stay in shape between seasons, he and some of his teammates signed up to play flag football - for fun. Well, at Saturdays game, there were some questions about one of the rules. Instead of just agreeing to go by what the ref said the rule was, one of the moms on the other team went to the car, got her laptop with wireless connection, pulled up the rules and took them out on the field to the ref. That, my friend, is NOT playing for fun!

Sue said...


I can only imagine what you're going through right now! How incredibly frustrating! Somehow, the docs have to take the control back from the insurance companies.

My New Year's resolution is to donate blood at least 4 times this year. The questions get more convoluted every year, don't they? 20 years ago, when I first donated blood (when I was 9 years old, right?) it seemed like any willing body who could hold a pen to sign the form could donate.

That reminds me, before I donate again, I should probably ask my husband if he ever, in his wild college days, had sex with a goat in Africa who had sex for money with a needle using heroin addict...

I'm happy that you can keep a sense of humor through all this.

Sue (ALL-Kids)

Anonymous said...

Oh, for petes sake.

Lord, give the Escoe's a break


Ro - said...

Wow! How amazing! I have never been to your blog (and will be returning!!) I think about MY problems (which are minimal) and forget there are people with REAL problems out there, I wish you and your family nothing but the best... oh and p/s Blaine? Thats my nephews name. :)


Anonymous said...

Kristie - I'm saying a prayer that they get Blaine settled very quickly, and that everything is A-OK. Also, I know exactly what you mean about being deferred from donating blood. The last three times I've gone to Macon to donate platelets they've told me my iron is one (stinkin') point too low & sent me home! AARRGGGHHH!! LOL! I sure wish they'd open a donation center in WR, don't you? Take care. Y'all are in my prayers.

Warner Robins

clara zimmerman said...

I am hoping that the alarm will go off soon and you can all wake up from this nightmare! You have a rose colored glasses way of looking at things, which is impressive! Best wishes to you all.

Care said...

Where is the bang-head-against-wall smiley when you need it? How frustrating! Hope the MRI gives more conclusive answers than the CT scan did.

Anonymous said...

I don't think you need contrast for an MRI, at least you don't at our hospital...hope that helps a little!!

Meg from Americus

cancermom said...

Just want you to know that I am continually amazed at your ability to at least *look* like your holding it all together through all this crap-o-rama!

I pray that you have an answer soon.

Love and hugs,