Just Keep Swimming.....
It’s almost midnight. 1 hour and 32 minutes and our health insurance expires.
I’m not irresponsible. Really. If anything I’m too responsible.
I have faith that my husband will be approved for an individual plan and that my son will be approved for the care he needs, but it is taking some time.
The next time I will be covered for medical care will be July of this year.
I feel the countdown in my veins the way I felt the anticipation of the feeling of falling –that gut in your throat verge of crapping your shorts feeling of falling- when I jumped almost three stories into the azure Caribbean bay almost 10 years ago. 10 years ago. My body was healthy and strong. Complex in it’s nuances, but nowhere near as damaged as it is now.
1 hour 28 minutes.
I am without medical insurance because I did the right thing. I called customer service two years ago and again eighteen months ago and asked questions to make sure I understood the material, so nothing could possibly go wrong. Unfortunately, customer service has, as it turns out, less of a grasp on the materials than I do. The agency has concocted it’s own definition of one small word that is worlds apart from any other definition. And it is that discrepancy that leaves me wondering what will happen to this broken body in the next six and a half months.
I paid $2000 per month for COBRA + copays for the three of us. Because of this, I have to wait. F&$% being responsible. I could have just said screw it and lapsed and the boys may have qualified for medical care (better medical care than under our COBRA plan- at least for kiddo’s autism related OT and language therapy). But putting kiddo at risk of not having coverage, and risking spouse being unable to find a plan because of a pre-existing condition, was not an option. And we couldn’t risk me going over to the medicare plan I had turned down due to group/employer coverage under spouse’s job because medicare was out of our financial means-more so than $2000 for COBRA and copays (or $750-$1000/month which is my share of that expense). (Yes, you read that right-medicare more expensive out of pocket than COBRA/private coverage. I’ll share my comparison chart here once I update it.) So for my forty five minutes on hold, I got an incorrect answer. And now the costs could be a burden until I die. Perhaps even longer.
I don’t even get my 45 minutes back to spend with my kid.
I am furious. I am sad. I feel, like my broken body has been pulling me away from my little boy since I got sick and now somebody who was completely incompetent in their work is pulling me away from that sweet child even more. And I’m furious at the economy and the spouse playing Spore while I sweat and struggle to make sure everyone else is taken care of. I want someone to share the energy and the drive for something better, for providing for our child, to share the load and the burden so I don’t have to be buried faster.
I want someone to say “Hey, I’m here. Slow down. We can do this together. We are in this together. I won’t stop to rest while you carry on with your broken back and your unbalanced and heavy load. We’ll carry it together and then we can sit back and enjoy the world together.”
1 hour 14 minutes.
I warned my family last night, “If you are going to get sick do it tomorrow”.
I feel like there should be fireworks.
Or some sort of fanfare.
Or maybe we should have juggled knives or eaten fire or something before the 24 hour countdown to this particular midnight.
But regular activities, the danger of everyday things looms over me for the next 6.5 months. On top of my already dysfunctional body. My personal time bomb.
My quest for answers about my newer inflammation – in my chestwall, my ribs, my joints, the inside of my eyes, the growth in my sinuses- is paused. But the discomfort persists. It’s not white hot pain and pressure like my busted and deformed spine. It is a deep ache when I move, like I feel asleep (in my pasty whiteness) on the beach for hours… My fingers, my knees, my ankles, my feet, my elbows, and my ribs feel like that sunburn pulling raw skin taut. But there is no aloe. And the pain meds don’t relieve it and I’m allergic to NSAIDS. And it feels like pneumonia too, but it isn’t, it’s just the inflammation in the cartilage of the ribs.
This on top of osteoarthritis, and Type 1/Juvenile Diabetes, and a laundry list of other things. And I’m just so exhausted and I haven’t had a day off in almost 7 years.
So I’ll wait. And I’ll sleep. And I’ll hope. And I’ll sleep when kid is at school. And I am realizing how many things I do in a given day, even when mostly bedridden, that under these circumstance, could be risky. And I can’t afford that.
I will have to make what art I can without flame, without grinding equipment.
For six and a half months.
58 minutes left.
I only hope that I make it through. When I come out at the other end, I hope I will have moved on, but I can never forgive the time lost, that belonged to my sweet little boy.
54 minutes. If I’m going to get sick, I had better do it soon.
My dark humor is coming in handy during this challenging (read: totally miserable and f’d up) time.
Things that occurred to me:
If I’m going to off myself, I had better succeed. Oh well, 50 minutes left, surely any attempts to resuscitate me would fall after midnight, and no coverage and I know 911 and the hospital do not have a money back guarantee.
To paraphrase Dorothy Parker:
I might as well live.
The other thought I have:
That this is an opportunity to test some alternative (at home, dietary and physical therapy) ideas regarding my bone and joint pain. Nothing risky, but perhaps I’ll track my personal routine changes here, as well as the results and the costs….
And to top it all off, school wants to put kiddo in 1st grade NOW. More on that tomorrow.
I think I am rapidly becoming exempt from managing all of this with any grace.
My smother calling to complain how I don’t bother to bring Alex to visit her or have coffee will seriously put me way over the edge. How far over the edge? Like point of no return over the edge.
Please, nobody test this.
I have 44 minutes left. Perhaps I should shower now, so I won’t risk falling in the morning, when my coverage is nil.
I am a bit grateful that I accidentally ordered a refrigerator size box of bubble wrap from Amazon.com. I’m thinking that a suit of bubble wrap and a helmet would be a good start for me.
Anyway, hugs all around.
41 minutes to midnight…..