First bad, then good

Let me get this rant out of the way, then I’ll say happy things
I lost my insurance last month. Today I went to go pick up my prescriptions for the first time sans insurance. Awesome. $670 for one month. ONE MONTH!! $670!!! Fuck me.
I had to fucking order my prescriptions from Canada. Approximately 3 months of prescriptions costs me $450.
It is a disgrace, an utter shameful disgrace for this nation that all it takes is one small stumble in one’s life and they’re done for. I’m goddammed lucky, David and I have a lot of money in savings and we don’t have kids. There’s be no way we could afford this otherwise. I have to go to a different fucking country to get the medication I need? I live in one of the wealthiest nations on the planet! I live in a nation with such a GLUT of resources that more gets thrown out than consumed in any one day and yet for me to survive I have to buy medicine from a different country?
It’s immoral and it is sick and it is an outrage that this happens.
I come from a looooong line of social liberal Norwegians who FIRMLY believed that a society is only as strong as its weakest members. So long as people were poorly educated and had little to no access to healthcare then so would your society be stupid and sick.
As per usual it is so much easier to judge than to listen, so much easier to dismiss rather than learn. I fear that we as a society will never shake that Puritanical ethos that your lot in life is a direct reflection of your righteousness. It allows us to skip any responsibility towards our fellow man. “Why should we help the disadvantaged? It’s their fault. Shouldn’t I get to enjoy the benefits of my righteousness?” And no longer are we a society, we are just a dogpile of opportunists climbing over one another. hey, if I’d wanted to get to the top i wouldn’t have stumbled, would I?
It’s so frustrating to think of how easy it is for one event to completely ruin your life and there is NO SAFETY NET. There is nothing to stop a freefall. I’ve said it for years and I repeat it more often than a broken record, but as a nation we should be ashamed of ourselves. People TALK about wanting to help but when it comes to taxes, to funding that safety net that can make all of society stronger, they balk and start talking about personal responsibility and pulling yourself up by the proverbial bootstraps. Well, you know what? Some people can’t even afford the fucking boots, how are they going to pull themselves up from that?
okay, rant over. I’m angry for my situation but it is ameliorated because I know that we will get by one way or another. I know how lucky I am. I am angrier for those people who do not have access to the resources I have. Those people who were already fighting to make their paychecks last until the next, those people unable to save any extra money because there was no extra money to save. People with kids who cannot afford to work because daycare costs more than their gross pay. People who go without the medication they need because they cannot even afford Canadian prices. I’m already low-dosing myself, hoping to make the pills I have last until the ones from Canada arrive, but I don’t think I can stretch my next 5 doses into 7-10 days. The irony of course is that these meds are keeping out of the hospital, except if I stop taking them it won’t matter, I can’t afford the hospital.
Thursday I leave for Chicago for the Stitches Midwest yarnstravaganza!!! There will be an awesome meeting of the Pants! We even have a hotel room and everything. Hooray for drunken pantsters!!!
Also, I will be meeting people who know me through my advice column on Ravelry. I’m very excited (and nervous and scared) to meet so many new people.
Also a great big Happy Happy HAPPY Birthday to my sister April!! YAY YAY YAY welcome to 35! I’ve been keeping a seat warm for you! April has been such a strong link in my support system these last 6 weeks. I repaid her thoughtfulness and kindness by forgetting her birthday. I admit it, I suck. BUT! I am making it up to her and I want all of you to wish her a happy birthday as well!
ALSO ALSO ALSO! My pantsters (seriously, I’m sorry is you don’t know who the pantsters are, they are the awesomest people ever) worked together and they sent me care packages and love packages and reminders that though I am in a dark place now, they are still there to help me. I have been left in tears, speechless over the kindness of their words and thoughts.
It’s hard for me, I am never good at accepting true kindness. I often feel I am not worthy of the sentiments or energy since there are people who need it more than I do. But I’ve learned to just believe it is there and it is true and it is real. I am lucky to know such people.

12 thoughts on “First bad, then good

  1. OMG APRIL! I forgot your birthday too! I suck too! I always forget birthdays though. It’s one of my worst traits. I am sorry hon.
    Also, I agree with you about the safety net thing. I have had to struggle for years with all of that. My daycare bill alone costs about $600 a month. There is assistance for this, but it comes at a price, and my price is that I have to work for no wages. I could get a real job, but then I have no assistance, the same income, and no daycare – agggggh! There, that is my rant. Sorry. Things will get better soon, they do ya know.

  2. I never cease to be shocked and horrified by America’s health ‘care’ system. Pardon my French but what the f*ck do people without family do? In Australia it is estimated that more than half the homeless people are dealing with serious mental health issues – and this is a country which, although it is flawed, in comparison to the US has a half-way compassionate health and welfare system. Pensioners (including those on disability payments) pay only about $5/prescription (the rest of us pay about $33 per script) and once you’ve spent more than a certain amount (which equates to more than 4 scripts a month) you revert to either the discounted or totally free rate. Sure it is not perfect and not every drug is covered – but most are – and we don’t have nearly enough hospital beds or psychologists or psychiatrists – but compared to the US – sheesh!!!

  3. I just want to say that I’m so proud to know you in the pants. You are going to have the most amazing time this weekend. We all love you very much.
    And April, I don’t know you but your sister speaks so highly of you. Happy birthday!!

  4. Hey Auntie,
    You are the Goddess of advice, but I went through a not so different situation just last week….. I have health insurance, but it’s a lame high-deductible policy. Anyway, my doc recently switched me to a new med (halleluiah…. I feel like a new woman), and when I filled it at the pharmacy down the street last month, $49. That’s pretty good… now I’m going to be a good little girl and fill the 90-day supply through the insurance-managed mail-away pharmacy… same med, $343 for 90 days! Holy crap! What’s going on???!!! I stopped the order…. there’s gotta be something wrong. And there is…. the freakin’ system.
    After a BUNCH of research, turns out there’s a tremendous variance in costs among pharmacies. And happily, I can actually go to the HOSPITAL pharmacy and get the very same medication filled for $21 per month! That’s whether you have insurance or not!!!! I might have to wait for an hour or so, but I’ll bring my i-pod and my knitting and I’ll be happy as a clam.
    It’s all bullsh*t, but I’m going to beat them all at your game. Ask around, make a bunch of calls, you might be surprised at what you find out…..

  5. I feel your pain on the Rx stuff. When I was in your situation, I went to this site and filled out a bunch of forms (it’s a pain in the ass, but you’ve got the time)and the Rx companies will send you free/reduced price meds. You may have to gather some info to send them, but if it saves $700/month, it’s worth it, right? Here you go.

  6. Not sure if it will help or not, but two things here: First, if you can still do it, opt for COBRA. It is expensive as fuck, but it sounds like it would be less expensive than your meds have been. It also keeps your next insurance company from being a dick (but in a bad way) about “preexisting conditions” which they will try to apply to every thing that happens for the first five years or so you go in for.
    Additionally, I would note that most doctors get shitloads of sample meds from the drug companies. If you let your doctor know what is going on, they might be able to set you up with enough to keep you covered in the gap.
    Good luck, hon…

  7. I wish I would have read this before you went out-of-town. Most doctors will give you sample medicines to get you through. I know. I’m there too.
    One day my husband had a good job at the mill two weeks later he was sick and never recovered. A year later he had to quit working and a year later was approved for Social Security. We have lived on Social Security for eighteen/nineteen years now. The mill went bankrupt and we lost our insurance.
    Every year, I say, next year has got to be better. So far, it isn’t working out. But, then again, I had emergency heart surgery and am alive. So, yep, life is good.
    I recently found out that I am from good Norwegian stock too so now I know why I fight the puritanical beliefs I grew up with.
    Don’t forget some of the pharmacies also help people with medicines. They did for years, with my husband.

  8. medical rant totally warranted. we have problems here.
    april, i know thee not, but happy happy day anyway. 35 rocks.
    you h, you do not make me hit you upside the head. you are worth it. you are awesome. we all love you and you deserve every ounce of it because of that awesomeness you so liberally share. and your fairy hair makes my kids smile and i love that too.

  9. I hadn’t been to visit your blog in a little while. Your most recent rant made me think of my sister and her husband. About a year ago my brother-in-law lost his job of 40 years because they moved the business to South Carolina where they could get cheaper labor. He only had one more year to go before he could retire. But now, both he and my sister have been looking for FT jobs. They need them for healthcare insurance. So far they have been able to make it because of some government program for dislocated workers. But what about all the people out there that don’t fit the bill? We need to change our healthcare system. OK, that is MY rant for the day.
    Glad that you are able to manage. But, I’m hoping for even better for you.

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