Theo's CT scan (February 2008)
Last week I made appointments for everyone to take advantage of our wonderfully free medical system. One of the issues with moving to a foreign country with children, especially a child like Theo who needs more than just basic medical attention, is the need to find doctors fairly quickly after you arrive. Thankfully, Dustin and I are very healthy individuals who rarely do risky things that might land us in the hospital or doctor's office. Unfortunately, our children will more than make up for the rarity of our visits. In Canada, Theo sees a nephrologist, urologist, and neurosurgeon on a yearly basis to check up on various conditions he was born with.

Waiting for Theo to rouse from anaesthetic (May 2008)

He has never been actively sick (other than the occasional cold), but he still needs a yearly kidney ultrasound and blood tests to make sure that everything is working at full capacity. We are hoping to extend our Canadian medical coverage for a year so the kids and I have the option of coming back next summer for a week or so to visit family and see all of his doctors. I will at least have 10 months after we arrive in Japan to explore the medical system and determine exactly how much it would cost for Theo's various appointments and tests. I am almost sure that it will be cheaper than the cost of plane tickets back to Canada, but we will see how desperate I am to visit family by June of next year. Though William is lower maintenance than Theo medically, he will only be 5 months old when we arrive and will have quite a few check ups ahead of him for vaccinations and such (more on vaccinations next time).

Sleeping after Theo's last and hopefully final
surgery (December 2010)

I am hovering in a strange balance between being daunted at having to dive into a new medical system and deal with Japanese doctors when I will speak practically no Japanese and being excited by the challenge.


Ring of Fire said...

I am impressed with your courage and excitement! I'm also going to Japan with JET this year. And I'm certainly excited & daunted by the prospect of buying milk and navigating the trains and talking with doctors all in a language I'm not fluent in, but taking children to the doctor with an ear infection or finding a school sounds like another level of adventure! I'm sure you both will find so much adventure and grow a lot from these challenges.


Laura said...

Thanks for the encouragement! I think it helps that I won't be working when we get to Japan. I should be able to dedicate a bit more time to figuring out all these little details. It might just be downright impossible otherwise!