Two Things I Worry About

For the sake of this column, anyway: should I be hospitalized for more than a passing fancy, how will I be able to maintain my non-Western (50-plus pills, Braggs Apple Cider vinegar, wheat grass, Essential Oil, etc.) alternatives/daily regimen away from home? And secondly, should I be so hospitalized that it makes returning to work WHERE I CO-PAY MY HEALTH INSURANCE PREMIUMS impractical and quite unimaginable — under the presumptive-circumstances-possibly-to-be, said insurance is unlikely to continue/be co-paid for too long, even though I work for an incredibly kind and understanding company, how do I transition to nonwork/working-dependent health insurance?

I suppose “Obamacare” is likely the answer but could I afford (since I’d no longer be making my previous income) the premiums which would be higher than my present co-paid premium? If the answer is indeed “Obamacare,” is its “openness” seasonal? At certain times? Requiring special circumstances? What if I am accepted but have to change insurers after nearly eight extremely successful (which I define as yours truly still being alive) years and begin anew with who knows what, where and how about me, myself and I? If part of surviving cancer is managing stress, I don’t see how that management — so to speak, continues after such a drastic change in my health care/lifestyle?

As for my pills/ “Rebecca routine,” what will give (to re-work an old expression) when hospitalized? Based on my previous one-week stay in August 2013, nothing will be given — or asked about. I’m not sure if it wasn’t asked about or integrated into my treatment as a matter of hospital policy or simply a reflection of poor planning/non-advocacy on our part? Either way, I stopped taking my pills/doing my things, things that quite frankly have likely contributed to my amazing good fortune to still be alive so many more years longer than my original “13-month to two-year” prognosis suggested I’d be. And how do you think the added stress of not maintaining another routine that’s been an integral part of my life going on for nearly eight years post diagnosis would affect my stay/stress should I be forced to extend my time at the hospital?

Perhaps I sound naive in worrying about pills and policies, especially considering that at the moment (although I am currently waiting for CT Scan and brain MRI results from two days ago and have chemotherapy scheduled in two hours), neither scenario is imminent. But that’s exactly the concern. If I wait until it’s imminent, it might be “too late,” as Tommy Heinsohn, aka “Tommy Gun” during his playing days, used to exclaim after made baskets by the Boston Celtics, while doing television broadcasts for them back in the day, starting in the mid-1960s. And the other scenario: one is not exactly forewarned when ‘imminent’ is; it sort of happens, right? All one can do I think, is anticipate and possibly/dare I say inevitably, investigate and plan accordingly — without being too morbid or morose in the process. Because once I lose my sunny disposition and positive attitude/sense of humor, it’s likely that all bets: win, place or show — and presumptions, are off. “Not a sermon, just a thought,” to invoke/quote Lon Solomon from McLean Bible Church as heard on local radio here in Washington, D.C.

Because who knows what matters, really? I certainly don’t. I only know is what I don’t know. And what I don’t know is, will any of the likely future changes I’ve discussed — to quote Curly Howard from the Three Stooges’ episode “Some More of Samoa”): “kill or cure.”

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