Stereotype would have you believe that as soon as Cody graduates we’ll be driving new SUV’s and living in the nice part of town with all the other doctors and lawyers. We will be going on family vacations to the Bahamas and have matching Ralph Lauren luggage and linen pants. Carefree! Rich! Raking in the dough!
The closer his graduation gets the more I realize that not only are we going to have to be grownups and buy a house with a water bill, a garbage bill, a sewage bill, a gas bill, no landlord to take care of the leaky faucets, we are going to have loans to repay. Loans that will amount to even more than what a mortgage and two new SUVs would amount to; not that we’re getting SUVs but whatever.
I look forward to having a house after eight years of marriage, while at the same time I want to curl up in a corner and cry because I don’t feel old enough to be dealing with IRAs, stock portfolios, life insurance and mortgages.
Today I had an experience that angered/frustrated/humbled/outraged and opened my eyes all at once. I had to go see a doctor at a new clinic about some issues I’ve been experiencing. It was a low income clinic because we don’t have insurance, and medical tests and procedures are expensive. Because we go to low income clinics, the wait times are longer and getting appointments can be like trying to get a lunch date with the President. But hey, I’ll take what I can get.
After my appointment today I was made to sit down with a “financial counselor.”
I had been “flagged.” Apparently they thought I was trying to “mooch off the system.” They wanted me to prove to them that I was eligible for financial assistance for my medical care. Even though I had a card that said I was eligible for a discount on my medical care through their facility, they thought there had been an oversight and that I was to pay full price for a visit to their clinic. Their clinic was for people with “no insurance” and “strained financial situations.”
When did living off $1500 a month become a “wonderful financial situation”?
This is where I get nervous about writing what I want to write. Trolls? Stay back. I don’t mean this to sound the way you’re going to want to twist it and make it sound.
I’ve never really been put in a situation like this before, but as I sat there trying to explain to this man that my husband was in school and we were living off small amounts of borrowed money that isn’t even ours, I started to feel like I was being accused. Because someday my husband will (hopefully) have a decent income we should find some magical way to have health coverage? Or we should pay full price for our health care now? No, we’re not going to be in this situation forever, it’s only temporary. But I still needed to see a doctor whether my husband was a hobo or an attorney. And I’m still on a tight budget whether my husband is going to school to become a nose picker or a lawyer. Nothing is going to change that. And if there’s an option where I can get medical care for cheaper I’m going to take it. If you’re on a budget and there was a way you could save hundreds, if not thousands on your medical care, even though it meant longer waits and appointments made far in advance, wouldn’t you do it? Assuming you were eligible (on paper) to receive such care?
I’m frustrated. No, we currently don’t pay taxes, but in another year we will enter a tax bracket so ridiculous we’ll be sure to make up for lost time. And honestly after our experiences over the last few years I am grateful for taxes and taxpayers in a way I never was before. A lot of people honestly need a little help sometimes. Yes, there are those who abuse the system, but then there are those who just need a little something to get them on the right track. We are in the latter.
This is one of the reasons this election is so hard for me, and I’ve never really known how to get it into words. By the time the new president gets his policies into effect we will be in a different scenario than we are now; we will be taxpayers with a mortgage and we’ll be hanging out in a high tax bracket. But for now, for this election we are a low income family trying to gain an education without any easily attained health care.
So do I vote for the candidate who will best suit who we are now, or who we’ll be in anther year? I don’t want to forget about all the wonderful people I’ve met while in this situation, the doctors, nurses, social workers and government employees who do all this hard work without enough gratitude or glory for the people who honestly need help to get back on their feet. But at the same time I don’t want to be paying more in taxes than we are able to save or put towards our own loans or mortgage.
I’m afraid I come off as a whiny baby. Hopefully there’s some of you who have been through the graduate school thing or a rough patch and can understand. I’m not a whiny baby, I’m grateful for the great life I enjoy and the comforts and opportunities I have in this country. I guess the stereotype that comes along with being an attorney’s wife is starting to rub me wrong.
Be nice. I will delete on this one.