Through this blog I found and embraced myself. I am a bilateral amputee after surviving meningitis in 1986. I have some scarring and have gone through numerous reconstructive surgeries. I am here to encourage independence, share my story, and grow into the best person I can be. I enjoy all things music, art, travel, cooking, humor, love and general creativity. Let's help each other through this journey of life!
Last week was supposed to be my week to pick up a few extra hours at work and enjoy a life while on spring break. However, what really happened was a roller coaster of emotions. I still don’t know what type of insurance I’ll have for this year (yes, I know its March already) and may have to wait until next year to get what I really need.
After discussing with my co-worker that $4,700 for a deductible is outrageous, I decided I would quickly & easily fix that. The universe had other ideas. Now considering I was a customer of an insurance company I figured I can just work with them to get me the right coverage. I was wrong. I had to call the Marketplace yet again - which is the worst call center I’ve ever dealt with. Since no one really knows whats going on but they kept giving me definite answers. I’ll break it down for you a bit…
1. I call to say I’d like to adjust my coverage as I have chosen the wrong policy to which the customer service person at the Marketplace replies NO.
2. I explain my situation that I have a physical disability that requires prostheses and I cannot afford a $4,700 deductible on top of my monthly premium. The person just says, Sorry I can’t help you. You’ll have to wait until open enrollment.
3. As I am getting increasingly frustrated & confused I clarify that it is open enrollment until March 31, 2014. The person replies, you can only do one application & only make changes if someone helped you fill out said application and gave you wrong information. I go on to say that the website is misleading & has been down numerous times when I have filled out numerous applications.
4. They didn’t care. The woman apologized a few more times & explained if I cancelled my coverage I can’t get any until 2015 and would have to pay the penalty fee at the end of year. I just started crying. Crying so hard I couldn’t function on the phone.
After hanging up I cried, and cried and cried and cried (mind you I’m not a crier). How am I falling through the cracks yet again? Before it was because I had a pre-existing condition. Now under this new health care reform we only get one chance whereas the Marketplace can continuously fuck things up and its all fine & dandy. The next day I called to speak directly with my insurance company to fix this little issue. I explained I would need the same policy but instead of a large deductible I would need a larger monthly premium. To which I was told to call the Marketplace call center; again. After another bout of crying I checked my mail and to my surprise I had some final paper work for BadgerCare Plus which is a state funded program. I needed to have my employers fill out paperwork regarding how much I make. I sent those forms off via fax on Friday morning and am waiting to hear back from them. Fingers crossed.
I’ve decided that since I am a relatively healthy individual who just needs insurance for prosthetics that I can make it another year without a good insurance policy. I would be bankrupt before June hit if I kept that insurance (I canceled it Friday afternoon and will be insured until March 31st). It sucks but I feel like it’s not quite the crisis situation I had envisioned. I’ll be able to use my savings account for anything that might come up if I don’t get accepted to the state program. I had been on a state funded program previously and it was nice to have but I know its possible they might not take me. Also, many of the places I do go offer payment plans. I’ll be fine and once I’m done with grad school & get a permanent job (next year) I’ll be able to put this struggle behind me. Hope everyone else has had better luck with open enrollment and here ends my rant.
I am waiting for my prosthetics company to give me the actual file because taking a photo of a photo hasn’t worked out. And they always claim it’ll be ready at my “next” appointment and that’s been going on since August. Quite frustrating.
I AM INSURED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Now if only I could fully understand what a deductible means…anyone?
I got my insurance card in the mail yesterday - I need to call to see if I can now start making some overdue appointments or if I indeed have to wait until April 1st. I’ve made it a full five months without any insurance so if I have to wait, I know I can make it through.
It is such a relief to have insurance. I really lucked out in not having any sort of major skin breakdown or infection since Sept 30th. But now I’m nervous on what I’ll have to pay out of pocket. Can someone please explain to me how deductibles work? I’m sure I’ll reach that amount in no time ($4700) since I’m having my right prosthetic re-casted to make a new upper corset that fits me properly. It would be a bummer to have to drain my savings to do that.
I’m afraid I might have chosen the wrong policy for me…
I have a $20 co-pay at the time I visit a primary doc and $65 for any specialists I see. I think this will be a lot of trial & error.
And its is definitely nice to know I am able to be insured now. We’ll see how this plan works out :)
For as long as I can remember I’ve been a nervous/anxious person. More specifically I’ve been anxious about my appearance and how everyone around me would take notice. Growing up my scars were red & numerous. I was constantly asked about what happened to me. Was it a fire, car accident or some other catastrophic accident I survived? Then they would noticed I was walking a bit differently from them and that would allow for entirely new set of questions and/or assumptions. Growing up these were questions I would “have" to answer on a daily basis throughout any given day.
Moving on into middle school, high school & college my anxiety would build as questions kept arising. Pushing me back into my shell. It was never the same person asking me and it was always the same response once I told them my story; pity. I never really dated until my mid-twenties. I had always been focused on a job/career and finishing my bachelors degree. I can definitely say I’ve always been too awkward to strike up a conversation with a stranger at a bar, library or cafe. Or any location really. If they would make a pass at me I wouldn’t even realize it until I was on my way out of the situation or talking about it later with a friend.
A few years ago I took up online dating - it’s as cringe-worthy are you’re imagining. But with working in a very small office & doing school online I was missing out on opportunities to meet people organically. I won’t pretend I haven’t met some great people but really most of the online dating e-mails were all the same. Overtly sexual, cheating bfs/husbands or the profile would just disappear (see previous option). Last year after getting my new set of prostheses I came to a point in my life where I decided I needed to just take time for myself. Get to know me and what I’m about. I deleted my online dating profile and started blogging & posting about things that scared the hell out of me. On April 24th of last year I shared my story as a survivor of meningitis and a bilateral amputee on National Meningitis Awareness Day. I shared it with family, friends and school classmates (who I have known since age 5, who never really knew anything about me). That was the day my life opened up.
I am no longer the anxious/nervous person I once was. Now I can bring up the fact I am an amputee and its not the crisis situation I thought it once was. I have a temporary moment of heart palpitations instead of a terrifying anxiety attack. I have also included a link to this blog on my dating profile. Granted I am sharing my entire soul through this site its making me accountable for my feelings & allows me to be genuine. I’m not going to hold myself back because someone might think my scars aren’t appealing or that being an amputee makes me different. I am different but that also makes me who I am. It took me nearly 25 full years to get to this point and I’m ready to put all of me out there. Keep me accountable, tumblr followers or anyone reading this.
Now that I will have insurance in the not too distant future I have set up an appointment to get my right corset replaced! We have been adding padding forever now to keep it fitting properly. I won’t have to get new liners (we all know the ordeal that has been) so that is definitely a plus. I plan on photographing the whole process as I don’t think I did two years ago when these prostheses were being made. Exactly one month from today I go in to be casted, which is the most enjoyable/relaxing thing I can think of. At least in regards to getting prostheses made. It won’t but until the beginning of summer when I’ll be able to have a properly fitting prosthetic but that is as good of time as any. I’m sure I’ll have an out of pocket expense but it’s nothing compared to paying for things without coverage. Or even with high risk coverage (which no longer exists). Here’s to progress!
You and me both! It has always been the people who didn’t really need coverage got it for a fraction of the cost than for those of us who really do. I’ve had coverage through my parents until about 3 years ago and ever since then have been paying way too much and it wasn’t covering any of my doctors visits. I am hoping with our new insurance plan/act in effect that things will start looking up for those of us with preexisting conditions. Up until a few months ago, anyone with a preexisting condition had to pay for “high risk” coverage as no other insurance company would cover us. If you’re lucky enough to work full time at a company that offers benefits you’re good as gold. I’ve been working part time (forever) while I’m in school. Once grad school is over I am hoping to be one of the lucky ones to have good coverage through a company I can be proud of. If you only work part time for a company they don’t have to provide you with insurance benefits and so you’re stuck paying for it out of pocket. Our system is definitely flawed.It would make sense for everyone to have coverage at a small percentage like Europe’s system.