I had a panic attack. Again. I’m sure you’re probably sick of hearing that. Just as much as I’m sick of having them. This time the trigger was another letter from my health insurance company. It was official. My premium was going up for the THIRD TIME SINCE JANUARY FIRST. Yes. You saw that correctly. In these few short months following the New Year, my insurance premium went up to over 2,000 dollars quarterly. That’s like, a mortgage payment. That’s greater than my property taxes. That’s like…more than the equivalent I pay per month for gas, groceries, and all my other bills…including insurance on my house.

It’s terrifying, and thus, the panic attack.

When his kind of thing happens I question lots of things both internally and externally. I question the reasons behind the increase, and wonder, if I just call, maybe I could get my premium down a bit? I wonder how much the recent election caused the increase, or if it was the Affordable Health Care that was causing the increases? It makes me wonder about issues like Death with Dignity , and if there will ever be more options for this in the future?

I sound like a broken record, and I know it. It’s no less my reality. It’s no less hard. It’s no less terrifying. The amount of uncertainty a person faces financially and physically. I have to be concerned about my health, my paycheck, I have to have control of my environments because those kinds of things affect my health considerably. Any healthy person will never even begin to understand the difficulty of living with chronic illnesses. You’re more aware of how finite and limited you are. You realize how insensitive the world is to people like you’re self…including the very health professionals who claim to be trying to help you. The financial toll. The emotional toll.

It makes me more sensitive to political decisions as well. It never occurred to me until a couple years ago that there are people who genuinely think that healthcare is a priveledge and not a right. Never occurred to me. I lived in a bubble thinking that we all just wanted to help each other out. That people didn’t think that healthcare shouldn’t be accessible to everyone. Of course, now that I live on my own and I look back, I realize that I was part of a group of health professionals, family members, and friends who all wanted to look after my wellbeing. They saw my struggle first hand. Having seen it and how my family struggled financially, they knew it would be better for me and others like me if healthcare was much easier to access. Yet, now that I’m older and live on my own, the reality got harsh. Of course there were people who thought that it was a priveledge. They could live their whole lives, or most of their lives, having never needing a doctor, or a surgery, or never needing medication, at least until they were much older and had natural age caused deterioration. Many people live without illness and their ignorance makes them unaware of the need for help in this matter. They don’t touch the issue because the issue doesn’t touch them.

I suppose all I can do is feel my feelings on the matter. Do what I can to pay my bills. Do what I can to stay healthy. My mother always told me that you cannot change other people. You can only change yourself. Damn I’m trying.


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