Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Mailbox Phobia

We got home late last night after enjoying a staff Christmas party. Austin and I put the kids to bed, quickly re-packed their backpacks for the next morning, and ran around turning off all the house lights. We were exhausted after a long day, and the promise of a warm bed, deliciously adorned with new chocolate brown billion thread count sheets made me want to cry with anticipation and happiness. I love my pillow. It is my good friend, and brings me comfort. I was waiting to hold my beloved fluffy buddy. Just as I had settled down for my long winter's nap (sans kerchief), Austin appeared in the doorway. Something was wrong.

Alarmed, I quickly sat up and demanded to know what had happened. It has been a long year full of unexpected news. Although we have had a good year, we have had a fair share of bad news, of loss. I feared the worst.

Austin: "We got another medical bill."
Me: "Oh, okay. I thought something was really wrong. You scared me! We always have medical bills. No big deal, right?"
Austin: "One thousand dollars. For blood work in August"
Me: "What the r*ciw)@oahg? Are you F95h* kidding me?" They only tested one vial!"
Austin: "I'll call tomorrow. Let's just go to bed."

Right. I put my head back onto the large lumpy rock covered in brown sandpaper. Anger, hot and tasting slightly of salsa, rose inside my belly. My head felt dizzy, my skin too tight.

Have you ever seen the show "Scrubs"? In this sitcom, the main character frequently has little daydreams. He looks off into the corner of the room and then the viewer is able to see his mind's eye and all that is therein.

I often feel like J.D. I don't always have the wherewithal or the courage or the rapid fire wit to say or do what I want to in a given situation. After an uncomfortable encounter, I mentally verbally bash someone. Or better yet, I mentally physically bash someone.

So as I lay there in the dark, listening to Sabra snore, I mentally yelled at the incompetent insurance fools. I composed speeches for Obama and Hillary and sang their praises. I plucked families out of the bowels of insurance-induced poverty. J.D. would have been proud of me when I lifted the severed dripping head of the billing lady at my doctor's office.

Today I am still wondering if I should move back to Canada.

I am painfully aware that no single person or party can bring us fewer taxes, better education, no war, affordable health care, and advise us on sensitive and yet moral medical decisions.

However, I am beginning to feel that because we cannot hit the perfect mark, we fail to even try. People will always need help, veterans will always be homeless, poorer neighborhoods will always have more crime. Why should we even bother to make changes?

What am I saying? I'm not really sure. I'm still feeling as if my skin is too small. I am uncomfortable and full of anxiety and trying to make sense of my thoughts. I am lucky to have a nice home, a bed, all those 'luxuries' that often do not feel as though they are. But....I also know from experience that selling your nice home is sometimes just a medical bill away. You get a little bit under, and then a little bit more, and try as you might by only eating macaroni and using candles, you cannot get out.

I guess I am still young enough to be incredulous that I pay so much for a service that does not serve me. I simply do not know what to do with this information. Like my four year old, I can only beat my fists and say that life is not fair.

And this is true. Life is not fair. Life brings pain and fear and sickness and sadness. But fear should not rest in my mailbox. Pain should not come from a letter. At least not a letter from my insurance company.

I realize that these thoughts are muddy and elementary at best. But I am so tired of spending so much mental and physical energy on things that really and truly should not matter.

Our great big ab-fab candy sprinkle designer country makes me mad. I cannot take my kids to the doctor unless I have a couple thousand dollars just lying around. I cannot put my kids into the schools that I am zoned for because although they are perfectly safe, they will not be able to teach my children anything of value.

So I am forced to sit by and mentally run over the 'suits' of America. I think sometimes of throwing them into a barrel full of eels.

And that will do for now. Until Election Day.

1 comment:

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