When you’re aging or on disability, the last thing you need is more paperwork. It’s already confusing enough.
Following my adventure in disability coverage, however, I finally had an appointment with an elder-focused / disability-focused operation to have someone double-check my options and make sure that I wasn’t overlooking anything.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t. I’m not eligible for any better options. With a disability income of $2,416 per month, I exceed the County’s low-income threshold of $1,2xx.
Then, this afternoon, I opened up the endocrinologist’s bill to find that the appointment didn’t cost me $110 to $180 out of pocket as originally quoted, but actually will cost me $669 !
$669 that I just don’t have. At least, not now and not in the foreseeable future.
If there’s one thing I have, it’s “control issues”. Major control issues when it comes to finances.
So, I’ve been looking at the businesses around me and trying to figure out what I can do to make a buck so that I can cover my anticipated expenses.
Nobody sets out to be a deadbeat. But, especially someone with control issues. We like paying our bills and knowing that we can take care of ourselves. In fact, we insist on taking care of ourselves.
A chronic illness like COPD / Asthma, though, is the great equalizer. In order to protect your health, you stop working because you’re clearly qualified for benefits based on your years of work and paying into the program, as well as the failure of your body to keep up as you age.
It’s not easy to redefine your self-identity to accept the fact that you can’t work your highly paid job any longer. It’s not easy to live on 20% of what you used to earn, but you prepare for the worst when dealing with birth defects, and you hope that you’ll die before the worst-case day happens and you find you have to go on disability.
It’s especially problematical to be a control freak when you know that there is money out there with your name on it – $147,xxx so far – and it’s being withheld as a legal strategy.
LOA Non Paid = Leave of Absence, promised matching salary benefits put into a special holding account vs. being paid out to me.
I tell you all of that, though, to tell you why I believe in euthanasia. Financial stress is one of the deadliest diseases in the USA.
When I tell you I have breathing issues (Asthma / COPD), which often leads to high blood pressure challenges due to the breathing medicine, and which leads to diabetes issues as the medication meant to keep me enjoying a good quality of life comes with their own side effects, then you get the idea that it’s a vicious circle.
If I didn’t have to take the medicine I take to survive, then maybe I wouldn’t be suffering the complications I’m experiencing.
However, if I don’t take the medications that help me control my breathing exacerbations, then the risk to my heart and lungs increases as they work harder to keep up with their defects and the affects of stress on my body.
Not to be melodramatic (and, no, I’m NOT suicidal), if we won’t pay to enable folks to be able to purchase their medicines to survive, then we need to make the path to euthanasia much easier to surmount as we age.
I had “documenting my plan for euthanasia” on my list of things to do this year, and mentally budgeted $3,000 to $5,000 to get the paperwork done. (Because there is no escaping the paperwork).
Then, as I was juggling the budget to afford heat and food and medicines, I started adding up all my “to do” list budget items, and realized that if they won’t cover any portion of my medication until I reach the deductible of $1,300 for medications – $1,300 that I don’t have in my monthly budget – I won’t need to spend the money to document my wishes as the stress will kill me first.
Yes, I’m a control freak. But, part of recognizing you have a problem is to admit that you have a problem that you can’t control, and see what develops from there.
In my case: “Hi, I’m Joanne, and I’m a control freak. I’d rather die on schedule than live with the stress of not being able to control my life, living comfortably in a warm home, with plenty of food. Homelessness scares me. Running out of money to stay healthy scares me. Death? Not so much.”