What’s Your Pre-Existing Condition?

At my office, we have a kitchen on our floor with a chalk board. It regularly has questions to answer like What your worst vacation destination? And people would make funny responses like, the address of our office building, or, for example, Hell!

Around Easter the question was What will the Easter Bunny be bringing you? I was really tempted to put “Passover!” but, I didn’t want to be a jerk.

This week the question was What’s Your Favorite Pre-Existing Condition? The answers were funny, like “Grouchiness!” and “Resting Bitch Face” (a condition from which I also suffer). Someone had written “My womb” and another wrote “depression as a result of our current administration”.

It was all in good fun. As someone with a legitimate pre-existing (aside from the womb which half of us have) it did give me pause. I wasn’t offended. I wasn’t annoyed. I didn’t even think to myself you should all be grateful that you can joke about this, because many of them may very well be joking about it in addition to having a real pre-existing condition.

So, I figured, well, mine’s real. So in the space there, I put in all capital letters TYPE 1 DIABETES!

This morning I went to the kitchen to clean a dish and found the board had been wiped clean. Maybe it was coincidence. Maybe it’s time for a new questions? Whatever the reason. I’m OK with that. Again, I wasn’t offended by it, it was all in good fun, and the answers on the board were amusing. But in real life? Off the chalk board, that shit ain’t funny.

I’m not worried about losing coverage completely but I am acutely aware that should my insurance change in some way, the coverage I do have will not be as thorough. I hope it’s unlikely, but if I were to lose Rx coverage, my insulin alone will cost me $4800 a year out of pocket. My Invokana would cost be $4200 a year (talking money it tacky, I know that, but whatever. I don’t really care in this instance).

I can’t begin to guess how much the parts that help my insulin pump operate will cost me without a copay, not to mention the additional meds I take.

I wonder if it’s a wise thing to have hardscaping done in my yard when maybe I should be squirreling away my tax refund. Am I playing the It Won’t Happen To Me game by moving forward with an investment in my yard instead of saving in case of the insurance apocalypse?

I am nervous for myself, but I really feel for people who don’t have at least some kind of income on top of chronic illness. It’s already real for some.

It’s like I told Shannon, we live in The United States of Twilight Zone these days.

2 Replies to “What’s Your Pre-Existing Condition?”

  1. Scary stuff! But life is too short to change all the fun stuff too drastically for fear of the bad stuff happening. Maybe there’s a happy middle of putting a couple bucks extra aside each payday for the possibility of needing a bit more down the road. I’m in the same Head In The Sand mode regarding my health insurance–I assume it’ll be fine because I’m confident in my employer but who knows!


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