Bye Bye Health Insurance - Hello Misery
Well. It's happened. I suspected it would. But it is now official.
Beginning in November I will no longer have health insurance. I will not be able to easily or affordably replace it.
I live in Texas.
Texas opted out of the Affordable Care Act insurance discount, aka Obamacare. And health insurance in this country is horribly expensive!
Just like everything else.
My doctor here will work with me. There's a health fair at the college every year where I can get my blood work done and then she will see me 6 months after that so I'll only have to pay for blood work once. I'll have to pay for the office visit and all of my medication prescriptions.
I can get my psych meds free through the county as well as the ability to see my psychiatrist. My therapist charges $125 an hour which is considered dirt cheap (I sure wish is stick with getting my degree in psychology!!). But it's more than I can afford.
And all the medications I take. I keep thinking about those! Oof. That's going to get expensive quickly.
I won't die if I don't take the allergy meds, but I will be very uncomfortable! To the point of being unable to get out of bed due to migraines.
Most of my other conditions, diabetes, high cholesterol, and fatty liver are reversible or controllable with diet and exercise, but I'm back in the same boat with healthy food.
It's so expensive. And we live in a food desert. We're an hour away from any decent grocery store and even there we wouldn't necessarily be able to afford fancy food. Fancy is anything healthy, basically. I could gladly live on top ramen, but I wouldn't live very long!
We can and do grow food in the spring, summer, and autumn, but winter is out. My husband and I really want a green house, but building materials are so expensive. Especially now with supply chains broken all over the world.
I would like to go back to work despite the fact it is so hard on my health and it will be harder without the medications that give me a good quality of life. Though I'm trained and experienced in office work (legal assistant, office manager, receptionist etc) all of those jobs are taken here in town.
The jobs that are available here are fast food, convenience stores, gas stations, janitorial, motel maid, and caregiving.
I've been creative in the past and earned a few dollars dog walking. I'm an excellent caregiver and would love to have some private clients. The problem is, everybody in town is in the same boat financially, or already has help.
Monday I'll go around town and see if any of the food places are hiring. It's blue collar work and not even a little bit intellectually stimulating. Butt it's work.
I don't know if I'm too old, at 53, to get hired as a new worker. Even sleepy little teeny tiny towns are ageist.
The other hiccup is I need to work part time outside the home. I have all these animals to care for in the mornings. And I really want my book to get written.
I would much prefer to do some freelance writing/editing/proofreading jobs, that's where my passion is, but I'm a neophyte in the freelance arena as well.
We don't have internet here, relying on our phones' hotspots for internet service, so many work from home online jobs are out.
I need to go get my eyes checked before the end of the month to take advantage of the last of the health insurance and get new glasses.
I'm not sure what the end result will be as far as my presence here on-line in the writersphere. My brain shuts down when I'm stressed. I call it stress stupid.
I may end up writing more or I may end up shutting down altogether.
Send me your good vibes. Send me your well wishes. Heck, send me your prayers.
Send me your money while you're at it! (That's a joke.)(Mostly.)(Feel free to take it literally.)
Meanwhile, I'm going to be going through all of my photos and creating stickers and weirdly meaningful gifts which can be purchased from my RedBubble store. (Link)
I'm also going to figure out this whole damn NFT creation which everyone (everyone much younger than I am) says is super easy but I've had such a hard time grasping, and try to sell some of my art and photography.
I have a Ko-Fi page and a Patreon page I've let sit fallow for a couple of years. I'll be accepting donations and taking commissions when I get those revamped.
I'll also need to figure out a Substack newsletter subscription. I'm horrible at keeping up with newsletters and I never know what to offer as "value". I have a friend who does micro fiction. Maybe I'll do that.
At this point I'm even willing to do OnlyFans and OnlyCoins content. Probably not OnlyFans, though, because they jerked my good friend around (no pun intended).
I've been off of Facebook for the better part of 2 years, but I suppose I need to get back on there and start selling my cheese again. I make PLENTY of cheese. (If you are in the Continental U.S. and want some homemade goat cheese that is simply to die for, let me know in the comments - I'll get you hooked up!)
I have an Etsy store I need to remodel and revamp. I used to sell custom tie dye T-shirts. I guess I can get that going again. And the cheese and art works can be listed there as well.
All of these hustles are super intimidating to me. They involve a lot of self-promotion and selling at which I'm terrible! They take thought and creativity during times of desperation and stress and my brain just won't cooperate more than half the time. Stress stupid.
These "side hustles" all add up to a full-time job. I'm not sure how I'll manage all of it AND work. I'll have to find a way!
I do have a real ask: of you need anything proofread or copyedited, anything at all, a paper, article, blog post, short story, or manuscript please hire me at very affordable rates so I can include the work on my resumé and include your feedback in a review.
Also, if you have any concrete advice I'm all ears.
I admit, I'm feeling a bit desperate at the moment. Desperate and overwhelmed. And exhausted just thinking about all of this.
Thanks, United States health care system! Thanks, Texas. Thanks, teeny tiny town. Thanks allergies and diabetes and fatty liver and high cholesterol and hypothyroidism! Thanks, DNA.
Thanks, but no thanks.
Lead and first image license free from Unsplash