Monday, June 1, 2015

End(o) in Sight.

This is a story that I've been meaning to share here for almost two months.
Since I'm stuck in bed today, I'm finally getting around to it!

I got accepted to have surgery at The Center For Endometriosis Care in Atlanta, Georgia!

Back on a particularly painful Sunday morning in April, I was in a deep, Percocet induced sleep after being awake for most of the night. Meanwhile, my mom was sitting in church when her phone lit up with a number from Atlanta so she quickly scooted out of her row and ran outside to answer the call. She spoke briefly with a doctor who was trying to get a hold of me and she explained to him that I had a really rough night and was probably sleeping through the phone ringing. He said he would try to call our house again later on so my mom rushed home to tell me the news (and wake me up).

This is a call that we had been anxiously awaiting for weeks! So for the rest of the day I was forbidden from being more than 2 feet away from the phone. My mom had the ringer up full volume and everyone at the house was in full alert. It was kind of hilarious, actually. Literally nothing got done that day.

Around 7:30 in the evening I started thinking he wasn't going to call. I was calculating the time difference, realizing it was almost 10 pm there, when our home phone started ringing. We all froze and looked at each other for a second before Weston ran over and answered it.

"Hello?" He started smiling so big. "Yes.. Yeah she's right here hang on!" He said, nodding at me with the biggest grin on his face.

I took the phone from him and my hands were shaking a little bit. "Hello?" I said.
"Hi, Kelle. This is Doctor Albee from The CEC. I hear you're having a pretty rough day."
I laughed a little, "Yeah, actually I am."
"By the looks of things, it seems like you've had a lot of pretty rough days these past few years."
My eyes brimmed with tears, hearing a doctor acknowledge something so simple. "Yes, I have. It's been pretty hard."
"I'm hoping we can do something about that for you, Kelle…"

I looked across the room at my parents and Weston who were all sitting on the couch, leaning in expectantly with tears in their eyes.

"I can't make you any promises," Doctor Albee continued, "But I feel very encouraged that if you come out to Atlanta, we will be able to help. It seems like your surgeon from last time may have missed a significant amount of endometriosis which is probably why you've never felt any relief. You've certainly been through a lot, but we are hopeful that we will be able to make you feel much better."

While he spoke, I couldn't stop crying. I nodded to my family and they all started hugging each other and came over to me and held my hand.

It was one of the happiest moments of my life.

I hung up the phone and we couldn't stop crying and embracing each other. Then we got to call all the wonderful people who have been praying with us to share the good news. From inside our house, I heard our next-door neighbor in the backyard screaming "woohoo!!" over our back fence. She was jumping up and down, so excited for us. (Remember the time I needed pain medication at 5am, my family was out of town and I couldn't get out of bed so I had to call a neighbor for help? Yep, that's her! She's seen this all firsthand, let me tell you!)

THEN, a few weeks later, it got even better!

The CEC and their surgeons are not in my insurance company's network, so we were fairly certain that just like most other procedures, medications, and specialists that I've needed these last few years, we wouldn't be able to get this surgery covered.

I've been told so many times by the insurance company that my medications aren't "medically necessary." Or endo is strictly a fertility issue and they don't cover fertility treatments. Blah blah blah..

Well after weeks of hard work and many calls made by my mama bear and the CEC, my insurance company sent me a letter saying that although The CEC and their surgeons are not in my network, "as a one-time exception to ensure you receive the care medically necessary" they will be covered by my insurance until the end of August! That is unbelievable. For how much we've fought them in the past to no avail, I'm SO glad that THIS huge expense was the thing they decided to finally help us out with. Thank the Lord! Yay!

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My surgery is scheduled for August 5th! I will be heading out to Atlanta a few days prior and staying for a little more than a week. My mom will be with me the whole time and Weston is going to be there for most of the trip too! We found an extended-stay hotel that is close to the hospital and offers out-of-state patients of the hospital a discount. There's even a shuttle that goes back and forth from the hospital to the hotel! I'm hoping we will be very comfortable while we're there.

This surgery will be the same as last time. It's another laparoscopy where they will go in and remove any endometriosis they can find, but this time the doctors are experts. All they do is endo. They've asked me so many questions that nobody has ever asked me about my pain and my body. I feel confident they will know exactly where to look to find all of it. And if all of it gets removed, there's a much better chance for pain relief for me, possibly an increased chance at having babies, and a decreased chance that the endo will grow back - at least as quickly as it always has.

The laparoscopy will help them find any endometriosis or other abnormalities outside of my uterus and they're also going to do a hysteroscopy, which I've never had, but it's a procedure to look inside the uterus as well to see if there may be any damage inside.

Aside from the actual surgery part and the flights (not a fan of airplanes) there is just so much to look forward to. I'm living such a sedentary life right now - unable to do much of anything without feeling pain for days and days afterwards. I'm always being so careful and I really hope that after this surgery, my thought process about making plans or being active can be much simpler.

We still have a few months to wait, but it sure feels good to have something so wonderful in sight. It feels like an end point to this terribly challenging and long battle. We can only hope!

As always, I will keep you posted. Thank you for your prayers and love!

Since I will be there a couple days before my surgery, I'm hoping to see a bit of the Atlanta area! If you have any travel suggestions or places we should see, please send them my way. I'm certain there are a couple of peach cobblers out there with my name on them… ;)


  1. I can't imagine how it feels to know that finally you will get some relief. Best of luck with the trip and your surgery!

  2. So excited and happy for you, Kelle! I've been following your blog for over a year now, and your posts on your endo illness sound so painful and unfair. I hope the doctors can get all the endo out of you this time. Best wishes!!

  3. Congratulations! I had surgery last May and have been doing pretty good since then. The first 6 months were like heaven and now it is touch and go (hoping it stays away until my wedding/honeymoon in August!). My Dr keeps suggesting Lupron but I am really not into that treatment plan... So happy for you! This has clearly been such a rough road. Now you can focus on all the fun that comes with planning a wedding!

  4. I'm crying tears of joy for you! You will continue to be in my prayers.

  5. Kelle, this is amazing news! I'm so overwhelmingly happy for you! ❤

  6. SO HAPPY for you! I'm tearing up, I hope this goes well!

  7. It’s good that things took a turn for the better with your insurance, or the expenses would’ve been difficult to deal with. Anyway, have you gone through with the surgery yet? Either way, I hope you are doing well these days. Thanks for sharing this with us. Take care!

    Joshua Duncan @ Focus Insurance Group