We’ve had some very smooth sailing the last couple weeks. We’re on a bit of a high with the prospect of an end date in Ohio, and have been getting rid of things on Freecycle, digitizing paper files and music, and generally moving forward. Then, this past Monday happened.
I am a very list-y person. So, for our day off together, I had a major plan in place. I had a list of where we were going, what we needed at each place, and a game plan on how to make it all work out. (Note the foreshadowing.)
Step one: pharmacy. In and out! Next: dentist. FUUUUUUUUUUL stop. What was supposed to be a quick cleaning turned into much more for Nat, and we ended up being there for almost 4 hours. On the upside I read a whole book (Mud Season by Ellen Stimson–quite good) but on the downside, I felt the whole plan toppling. See, we had an appointment to go to at 3, and I arranged everything around it. First, I thought we might just do a few things before 3, and finish up the rest later. Then, it got later, and I thought we might just get lunch before 3 and do everything later. And then, I started worrying that we wouldn’t even make the 3 o clock appointment, and HOLY CRAP I’M GOING TO MISS LUNCH (the most important detail.)
Finally Nat was released and we drove across town to a meeting with an insurance guy, one some friends had used and liked. At this point I was thinking “well, an hour or so here and then we get some food!” (Note more foreshadowing.)
We sit down with the guy and lay out our needs with health insurance: has to be nationwide coverage, can’t require physical residency in Ohio, and by the way, we’re going to be essentially poor, so affordable would be handy.
We then spend 2 hours with this fellow. And I liked him, really I did. He seemed to get what we were saying, and had good ideas about plans with cool features that we would love, like doctors available by Skype for issues like a sinus infection. He prepares his insurance idea for us and flips around his iPad to show us. I see 3 columns of numbers: completely unacceptable, completely unacceptable minus $10, and completely unacceptable minus $20. I’m waiting for the punchline, like he’s then going to say “And now, the decently priced plan you will want!” And then I realized that he was absolutely not going to be saying that, because completely unacceptable minus $20 was his very best offer.
I really wanted to say ” are you out of your everlovin’?!” But I composed myself and said “Um, I was really expecting a number quite a bit lower than that.” (Part of me also wanted to ask exasperatedly if he would be game to pay 40% of his overall income towards health insurance. That would be just dandy if we didn’t have to eat, huh?) And, in that moment, insurance man and I seemed to share a common insight: this was not going to work. We all politely ended the meeting, and Nat and I headed out for (finally!) some food. All I had to say was “I CANNOT believe I missed lunch for that!
Postnote: I cried that night, thinking about the number he had showed us, because it made me scared that it meant we won’t be able to afford this plan. Nat snuggled me and asked me to stop thinking about it for the night and to plan to call my Dad in the morning. I did, and, as he always does when I’m all spun up over nothing, he laughed. And we talked about the million other options that don’t require me to win the lottery to enact. Next step: ACA fact-gathering!