You know that moment. It happens in the blink of an eye. A fire rises in your chest and your soul rumbles. You are moments away from unleashing your Mom Roar. Your baby is hurting and you will do anything it takes to fight for your child and take away his or her pain.
Sadly, no matter how loud we roar or how tough we seem, sometimes we can’t take away their pain. And our roars turn into sobbing moans and screams of, “Why, God? Why my baby?”
At least that is what I moaned when our small town doctor came in to tell us we were being transferred to the bigger hospital because he saw a mass on our 7-month old daughter’s liver.
The roar came later after the pain was processed or rather numbed. It was time to put on my mom panties and march on.
I have met countless of fellow cancer moms who share my heartache, but I also know thousands of other moms who can also share in my heartache. When one child hurts, we all hurt.
The most extraordinary group of moms (and dads) I have ever met are the eating disorder moms. Eating disorders, the deadliest mental illness, are all too often overlooked by medical providers and denied by insurance companies.
These moms (and dads) not only have to be there for their child in treatment, learning how to manage the disease, they also have to go to war with insurance companies.
These parents are forced to take out second mortgages and loan after loan just to keep their sick child in treatment. And sadly, all too often, parents must take their child out of the treatment they need and deserve because they simply can no longer afford it.
What if this were the case for children with cancer? Insurance companies denying chemo after chemo. Not allowing the child to stay overnight in the hospital simply because the insurance consultant says they aren’t ‘that’ sick and really don’t need it. They can heal at home.
There would be outrage.
Of course, I am not naïve to the notion that cancer parents also deal with denials by insurance companies. I own that shirt too.
But can you imagine taking your sick child to the doctor only to have the doctor say, “Oh, she just needs to eat. She is just naturally thin.” When your Mom Intuition is screaming something different. You roar, you erupt and you are repeatedly ignored, overlooked and denied.
Well, they have made enough moms angry enough and we are coming after them. We come in numbers, with passion and fire. Uniting our roars to a collective and ear shattering boom that will echo through the chambers of Senate and Congress.
Anna Westin, a young woman with the world ahead of her, diagnosed with anorexia and denied repeatedly by insurance companies. The Anna Westin Act honors Anna and all those who have lost their battle with an eating disorder.
The bi-partisan bill demands insurance companies are held accountable to uphold fair and equal coverage for mental illness just as they do for physical illnesses like cancer.
It is time for a change. You can be the change. You don’t have to be in DC today or tomorrow. You can pick up the phone or email your representative. Tell them about the Anna Westin Act.
Help us roar. Help fellow mothers and fathers who have to watch their children helplessly suffer. Unite your roar with ours and let’s put an end to unfair access to treatment.
You might not know what it is like to have a child with cancer and I don’t know what it is like to have a child with an eating disorder, but I do know that we can all empathize as parents and loved ones. No parent deserves to watch their child suffer helplessly. When one child hurts, we all hurt. Let us end the hurt.
No parent should have to bury their child because an insurance company kept them from getting the treatment they needed and deserved.
We are MOMs…hear us ROAR.
For more information on the #MarchAgainstED go to http://www.marchagainsted.com