I will never stop fighting to show those around me, just how important it is.
It’s winter over in the states, and while I do live in Atlanta, it still gets cold. It still snows here. Laugh all you want, but it is currently 24 degrees Fahrenheit, and I have come close to Googling “When will it be warm again?” In America, we celebrate and nearly worship a very odd holiday that we call Groundhog’s Day. And this year, the Groundhog predicted an early spring. (So where in the Sam Hill is this early spring??)
So, along with winter comes a glamourous assortment of flus, colds, upper respiratory infections, and sinus infections. All around just a really fun time. But oh, don’t worry. American citizens make it a serious point to get their annual flu shots, flu mist, physicals, designer brands of this season’s new drugstore cold meds, and vaporizers. We beg and plead the doctor for antibiotics, even after being told that “Ma’am, what you have is a virus. For the 5th time, antibiotics do nothing for a virus. Now please put your Taser down and I am going to have to have you escorted out of the pharmacy.” As you can see, we make a pretty big deal of steering clear of the cold and flu. (And rightfully so.)
Another branch of healthcare that is also a necessity is dentistry. My fear of the dentist will always prevail, but I still drag myself there two times a year to maintain good oral hygiene. No, the reason why my gums are bleeding is not because I don’t floss every day. It is because you just stabbed me with a damn machete/scalpel/whatever-you-wanna-call-it.
I could go on and on about the routine healthcare checkups that we do. We go to the dermatologist once a year to be told “No that mole is not precancerous,” and then go straight over to the tanning bed. We go to podiatrists for the oh-so-trendy ingrown toenail, the OBGYN for an awkward “So, how’s work going?” We go to allergists, nutritionists, plastic surgeons and endocrinologist. And most certainly all of them will take some sort of insurance.
This is great. Do not get me wrong, I love being able to live in a country where I can make a same-day appointment to get a flu-test and then pay just $21.00 out of pocket. (This may or may not have been a thing that I did just yesterday.)
Yes, my name is Hillary, but please do not compare me or associate me with any of our loony politicians when I say this—but there is certainly a flaw to our healthcare system. (Okay, more than just one flaw but let’s be honest, if I were to list all flaws of American Healthcare, then I would likely be done typing this post by the time I hit the age of 72.)
The healthcare flaw I am discussing today is the mental healthcare one.
Yes, that. You know, the one where it costs me $95 out of pocket if I want to refill my meds. Or that one time that I was caught off guard with “Sorry ma’am, but we don’t take insurance anymore.” Or, my favorite one, the one that costs me $75 to go to a group therapy session an hour from my apartment because “This location is what is most convenient for our therapist interns.” Or, how I go to find a therapist that specializes in OCD in my state, and none. of. them. take. Insurance. How about the fact that I am trying to organize a free OCD support group in my area, and the one venue that is “partnered with OCDGA” is trying to charge $75 an hour? Making a profit off of mental illness, cool! Do you also push kittens down flights of stairs for fun?
Now I do realize that there are a lot of legalities that are simply over my head with this whole insurance thing. Trust me, I know it’s a web of profit, scams, terminology, and headaches. I don’t fully blame the psychologists/psychiatrists for this never-ending paradox.
But, this just seems so upside down. A flu shot is completely free. In fact, some companies pay their employees to get a flu shot each year. But you want to talk with someone for 35 minutes on the war that is going on inside your head? THAT WILL BE AN ARM, A LEG, FOUR OF YOUR TEETH, AND YOUR FIRSTBORN CHILD.
And then you have those people.
The ones that say the worst five words that anyone could possibly say.
It’s all in your head.
(We are out of breadsticks comes in close 2nd though.)
Ah, it’s all in my head you say? OMG WOW THANK GOD! YOU ARE A TRUE GENIOUS. IT’S IN MY HEAD? THIS WHOLE TIME I THOUGHT THAT IT WAS IN MY FOOT, GUESS I’LL CANCEL MY APPOINTMENT WITH MY PODIATRIST THEN.
Gold medals, Nobel Prizes, and trophies to all who discover that mental illness is all in one’s head.
As you can see, it’s a paradox. It is a puzzling issue that I will never understand. Throw the powerhouse of the human body to the wayside. However, I will never stop fighting to show those around me, just how important it is.