Thursday, October 04, 2007

Living with state assistance

Twas Brillig and Butrfly are hosting a “Behind the Stirrups” post day where you can share your lovely OB/GYN stories. I don’t really have a horrid story, but it got me thinking, especially after my experience this morning, about how I was/am treated being a mom at various clinics. See we were both subbing and it was summer when I got pregnant with Cory. So we qualified for the state health insurance for me which was quite literally a God-send because they paid for everything. I think the only thing we had to pay for was a couple of prescriptions because they were for topical pain medicines/creams that apparently the insurance wouldn’t cover. But hey, after they also covered my gallbladder surgery I am NOT complaining!

However, I will complain about the way I was made to feel simply because I had a little coupon that said the state was covering all my medical bills. The first appointment I had was the preliminary get all my history and give me 10 million pounds of literature to read type. But I don’t know why they even bothered to give me all the pamphlets since by the way they treated me they obviously thought I couldn’t even read let alone have 2 college degrees! Seriously they acted like I knew nothing. The nurse was EXTREMELY pushy when I said I wanted certain things and didn’t want certain other things. I had my own ideas thank you very much and I didn’t want her telling me how it was going to be. This was my body and my child not hers!

Thankfully I opted not to have her come visit me when Cory was 3 days old. I would come to her well baby check (which wasn’t quite so bad because by then I think she had figured out that I wasn’t a complete moron when it came to babies) but I did not want her coming to my house just so she could look around and try to find all the bad things.

Then there were the other general nurses and receptionists. It just seemed like every time I turned around they were looking down their noses at me. Yes, this is a low income clinic, but if you’re going to work there that doesn’t give you the right to treat every patient like the scum of the earth. You don’t know what circumstances might have brought them there.

Which actually brings me to the second reason that happened today. I went to my WIC appointment to get my monthly checks for milk/cheese/juice etc since I’m still nursing Cory. This time I actually managed to make it on time. But the receptionist looked at me and said, “well, I’ll have to see if they can still take you since you were supposed to be here 5 – 10 minutes early to get recertified.” I said “what? No one told me that when I made the appointment?” and she was just totally rude and huffy like I should have known and it was a major inconvenience. Well, excuse me! They weren’t busy at all and in the time it took her to walk down the hall and find out if they would still see me she could have already had me sign the one paper and put in my new coupon number and just told them I was ready! It took less than a minute. Did she not see that I had a 6 month old baby on my hip? Did she think that I might have had to stop and feed him? It’s not like they don’t actually push breastfeeding all the time! And that requires not driving, or getting ready, or anything. Sometimes it makes you late for things! Have a little common sense please lady!

So I guess there’s a lesson for all of us in this: Don’t judge people by their looks or circumstances. Treat them like you would any other normal human being because guess what? You never know when the roles might be reversed and you might be the one needing help! It can be pretty humbling and it’s not any easier when you’re treated like trash on top of your circumstances!

And since it is also Thursday let me add that I am extremely thankful that there are programs out there to help people with low incomes. I honestly don’t know how we would have paid all our medical bills this past year without the state insurance. For all my complaining about how we’re right on the border so we’re not going to be covered as soon as Cory’s a year old we have already been very blessed. And even though I think we’ll then have to figure something out I know that God will take care of us. He’s probably laughing at my worrying right now going, if only you knew what was coming!

3 comments:

  1. Wonderful story, Krista! You're so right. I have a neighbor who complains to no end about how he has to pay taxes towards medicaid/chip/wic and other government sponsored programs. And yet, I clearly remember when his family was younger and his business was floundering and they were relying on federal programs. We just can't forget how important they are. I did what you're doing with my first too, and I remember the stares and the way they treated us like we were second-rate humans. Sigh. Good on ya, and I DO believe that the Lord will take care of you. You're on the verge of witnessing a miracle, and it's going to be very exciting.

    Thanks for playing along, by the way! (Oh, and I can't take all the credit--this fun gyno-bashing day is hosted by dear Butrfly too, so make sure you get your link into her site too!

    And for all your sweet comments lately!

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  2. Grrrr. Stories like this make me so mad. Don't they realize they'd be so much happier if they were just NICE?

    You asked about my BlogHer ads on my blog...No, I don't think they are going to pay for much. Can you hear me weeping?

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  3. I had very similar experiences during college when I was on Food Stamps. One lady actually made me cry, because they were considering lowering my amount to basically nothing...and I needed them to eat! She made me feel bad because I was in college, she made comments about how I was so lucky to be in college, and why did I need food stamps? And every person in that office was rude and unaccommodating. I'm not sure why...I guess they deal with all sorts of people.

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