Medicaid Mystery: Earlier today after dropping our daughter off at the DSO (her social group program) I swerved west to DSS (Department of Social Services) to inquire in person what was up with the Medicaid issue, after receiving an email from the DDS case manager (Department of Developmental Services) who suggested I contact the DSS case manager. Can you follow this? I can’t but I figured in person is best. An hour and a half later the mystery into why our daughter’s Medicaid coverage was dropped August 31 was partially unveiled. Partially. Though we have provided complete “transparency” that our daughter has no money sources outside of her entitlements, a couple of little blips on the screen confused the decision-making bodies. O.K. But then what else happened? Something about the waiver, different types of Medicaid coverage programs and that our daughter is not in a licensed group home but a CRS, which is considered in the “community.” Excuse me. Can anyone follow this? I sure can’t.
Kids and Screens: While I waited the hour to meet with our daughter’s DSS CM (insider’s acronym for, you guessed it, Case Manager) I turned to my iPad2 to work on today’s post. I thought it was hilarious how magnetically drawn the youngsters in the waiting area were to the screen. And I mean youngsters, maybe 5 and 6 years old, had to dip towards me to sneak a glance at the pad, probably looking for some Dora the Explorer game or whatever else is fashionable amongst first graders. Besides these few moments of humor, mostly what passed the time was scribbling on the pad (I ditched most of it as my writings there turned out to be dribble) and when I finally met with not just one CM but two, I realized that the four relevant bodies, ABD (Ability Beyond Disability, a non -governmental, non-profit service agency), DDS, DSS, and Medicaid are like The Sun and The Moon, The Earth and The Stars, all separate planets with some interdependence but not much in the way of communication. HA! Jokes on who?
Minds Have Met Before: Last evening in preparation for forthcoming meetings on our daughter’s challenges, I reread ABD’s “Behavior Guidelines” dated 10/27/11. All the issues cited are old and chronic though improved by degrees: focus, attention, moods, follow-through, difficulty waking up, going to bed, cleaning up, waiting her turn, not interrupting, anxiety. Many minds have met over two decades pondering these challenges and producing reams of paper to facilitate solutions; IEP’s at PPT’s and testing evaluations and doctors’ recommendations. I wonder, if someone tracked me over the ample decades of my life, would my issues be as consistent, my challenges thematically the same, with mild to moderate degrees of improvement, aka maturity here and there, as my daughter’s seem to be? Still interrupts, distracted often, hard to wake up, difficulty going to sleep, anxious. Wait, is that the mother or the daughter? Both.
Many minds have met, and more will meet. But the themes remain the same, no silver bullet has ever been located and hours of talk, talk, talk, have floated up to the heavens, lost in space like ever so many wisps of dandelion weeds, never to be seen or heard of again. Yet, I know, no matter how much material I provide to each new body of educators and caregivers, they all have to process the data and the girl, using their tools and protocols. It is all process, life. Who knows that better than a therapist?
©Jill Edelman, M.S.W., L.C.S.W. 2011