I am so grateful for caring people who follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost. A person we work with at Children’s Hospital called from her home outside of working hours to check up on Mason. She also wanted to talk with me about things that she’s not allowed to discuss while at work. This sweet person shared what we already knew we were facing – a stagnant hospital bureaucracy that drags their heels when scheduling important procedures like the MRI under general anesthesia Mason needs. Expected Wait Time = Months. Months of waiting around for them to take pictures of my son’s spine before we can move forward in any area.
This wait time causes problems. The changes to Mason’s foot and hip mean he cannot wear any of his braces – those for standing and those keeping his clubfeet from relapsing. The possible surgery to correct foot and hip tightening so he can fit into braces again can’t be done until we see if his spinal cord or shunt are causing the problems. In the mean time things will continue to get worse in his leg and neurologically because doctors are not DOING anything.
Back to the phone call. She reminded me that the only way to get the bureaucracy moving at a faster pace is to move up the chain of command directly to hospital administration. As she spoke the word ‘advocate’ came into my mind, which means….
Advocate (noun): a person who argues for the cause of another
As Mason’s mother it is my role to be his advocate. I present his cause to the doctors, hospitals, medical establishment. I plead his case, press for relief, push for help, and diligently work for his needs to be met. As that thought rolled through my mind tears began to fall because I am not Mason’s only advocate. I’m not even his best one. Jesus Christ pleads and argues Mason’s cause before Heavenly Father. Our Savior is pressing for relief, pushing for help, and diligently working for Mason’s needs to be met by a merciful Father. (See 1 John 2:1, Moroni 7:28, Hebrews 7:25, Doctrine and Covenants 45:3-5.) The phone call from this woman was just one evidence of this work He is doing, prompting others to share knowledge when we need it.
Today I called hospital administration, unsure of how it would help but praying fervently. After speaking to three people and explaining what we need done and why I was given the promise that I would hear back from the third person today or tomorrow. I really didn’t know if anything was going to happen.
Then my phone started ringing. Could we have Mason at the hospital tomorrow morning before 6:00am? Yes. Of course. Thank you so much. Multiple calls from people who needed information or needed to give us information. I had to rearrange our schedule. My husband had to get time off work to care for our other seven children but we have learned when God moves and opens a door we need to dive through it wholeheartedly.
I’m still figuring a few things out. Mason and I will have to go back next Tuesday to get the results of the MRI and talk directly with the neurosurgeon. That involves finding a babysitter for seven children if possible, a ride for one of those children while I’m gone so she can go to the temple, and lots of rush hour traffic. Then we go back again three days later for Myelo Clinic because Mason’s wound needs debrided again. And of course we will be working on a plan to handle what we learn from the MRI of Mason’s brain and spine.
I feel so inadequate some days! Being Mason’s advocate is hard. I am grateful to know that I am not doing it alone. Jesus Christ is pleading with the Father. Heavenly Father loves Mason even more than I do. He wants to bless him and help him even more than I do.
“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” – Romans 8:31