People Who Hate Universal Healthcare Will Hate Universal Plague
Holly Wood, PhD 🌹

People who hate universal healthcare and call themselves Christians make me want to scream “stop lying to yourself and everyone else”. There is a special place in hell for Republicans just waiting for them, and with as ancient as half of them are I would be afraid if I were them. Very afraid. Satan is probably going to shove giant pineapples up their ass on a daily basis ala “Little Nicky”. Because they are nearly as bad as Hitler with the amount of innocent people they have no problems sentencing to death. It also amazes me that a party that is so against abortion wouldn’t make it EASIER for women to get healthcare while pregnant. Here is just a thought, morons. Maybe some women get abortions because that is cheaper than paying for labor and delivery. Maybe if you ensured all women access to affordable healthcare there would be less abortions? I know when I found out I was pregnant at 22, unexpectedly (and I really mean that since I was told I could not have children) and I considered abortion because at the time I had no job and no insurance. Thank the Gods for Medicaid because otherwise I probably would have gone through with it and my wonderful son would not be here.

If I had the money I would go to Washington and I would sit outside of Congress until they allowed me to speak and by the time I was done one of two things will happen. Either they will get their shit together and work things out between both parties to present a viable healthcare bill OR the Republicans will manage to confirm, by their actions afterwards, that they truly are not #TrueChristians and that they really do only care about themselves and keeping their jobs through lies and deception and the people will finally know the truth about them. Either way, it frustrates me to feel so impotent with my voice drown out as not important enough to be heard from.

This is NOT the country our forefathers envisioned. The way things are being handled in Congress is an insult to everyone who ever fought for or died for this country and our Constitution. Checks and balances were put into place for a reason at the founding of this country. There are reasons why the Senate has few things that can pass with a simple majority vote. Now they are just changing rules because it suits them and allows them to push through on party lines. This is NOT how it is supposed to work and it is an insult to the American people and our ancestors who fought for the freedom of this country and built it on the premise of every voice being heard, even the smallest. Now it is a mockery of those ideals and it started with the Dems and now the Repubs, instead of being the adults in the room and being bigger than the irresponsible side who started it, they act like 5 year olds and cry “they started it”. Grow up! You represent the people. ALL OF THE PEOPLE, not just those who voted for you. Stop the madness before you start another civil war. And make no mistake, that is exactly where we are headed. It is this country’s parties that are going to be at fault at the end of the day. They are completely uncivil to each other with thinly veiled insults thrown back and forth all over media. I was always told to lead by example and if this is the example that they are going to give to Americans it is no wonder why violence and hatred are on the rise. I hate to say it, but even my favorite politician, Bernie Sanders is guilty of doing this and it HAS TO STOP.

By the way, the shooting that occurred in Virginia that injured the majority whip, was caused by BOTH sides and the media so stop trying to point fingers at everywhere else including the other side. THE FAULT LIES WITH YOU ALL and the nastiness that American citizens see all of you exude towards one another. There is a poison in our government that is slowly eroding away the themes of civility and humanity. That poison is the parties and their members voting for their party and NOT the American people.

At some point we have to say enough is enough. Republicans need to ask themselves “who do I work for? Do I work for that corporation run by three rich assholes who only care about getting richer? Or do I work for the American people?

You see, the Republican party calls themselves the conservative party. That is what they USED to be. Conservative on fiscal issues and wanting less government. That is fine and understandable. But that isn’t what they really are anymore. What they are now is CORPORATE CONSERVATIVES. A corporate conservative is someone who is conservative on fiscal issues and want less government oversight of corporations so they can make money hand over fist at the expense of the populace. They don’t feel like they work for us any more, they work for the Koch’s, Goldman Sachs, and other corporations that are happy to screw the rest of us while getting richer all the while.

Dems aren’t much better either. They talk the big talk a lot of the times but when push comes to shove, a good majority of them would sell us all out in a second for one good opportunity. To be honest, these days I don’t feel like a single person in Washington gives two shits about me. All the while, I know I am not the only one being drown in medical bills.

I have MS (a pre-existing condition that is very expensive and life long). I spend every day of my life in agony and pain. I have been on 5 different therapies and NONE have worked to slow my MS. What they did manage to do is lower my quality of life while I was on them. If you know nothing about MS, let me explain a little. Look at a lamp chord. You see that plastic coating of the chord that protects all of the electrical wiring in the lamp? Your brain has the same thing around the nerves/syntaxes. It is called myelin. The immune system, for some stupid reason that has yet to be explained, attacks that protective myelin sheath around those nerves/syntaxes and destroys them. Well, if you think back to that lamp chord, what is likely to happen if that outside platic/rubber protective sheath were to become worn away? The likelihood of it causing a short becomes greater, right? Well,that is what happens to people with MS. Our brains, for lack of a better word, have a short in the connection of syntaxes because of that lack of a protective layer. This causes those nerves to make us feel pain that is not actually there (can you imagine having massively horrible pain that makes you want to die, only to be told there isn’t really anything causing the pain so there is nothing that can fix the pain? Gives a while new meaning to it’s all in your head, right?) It also causes HORRIBLE muscle cramping. By horrible I mean, take a Charlie horse in your calf muscle (I know everyone has experienced one of those before) and amplify it by 100. That is what MS patients get to experience on a regular basis. These cramps can happen anywhere too. Calf muscles, thigh muscles, biceps, and even back muscles (those feel like someone is trying to break your spine and are 1000 times worse for me than any of the others thanks to the nerve entrapment in my back from my back injury).

So, now that is explained, let me tell you what the therapies consist of. There are things they call “interferons” that they prescribe for MS patients. There are all different kinds, most are given in shot form given several times a week if not daily, although there is 1 IV form I know of (I only know of it because my doctor wanted me to try it after my 3rd different interferon didn’t work, but my insurance denied it) that you do once a month at an outpatient facility. There are also at least two pills that I know of at the moment (new therapies are being developed daily).

Interferons are the equivalent of giving a dog a toy to chew on rather than your favorite loafers. It distracts your immune system, supposedly, so that it attacks the interferon rather than raging through your brain and spinal chord, supposedly helping to slow the progress of the disease. Unfortunately they also make you feel like death warmed over. Imagine having the flu 24/7 365 days out of the year. Now tell me that people with MS have any quality of life on these medications, I dare you.

One therapy that has been PROVEN to slow, stop or sometimes even REVERSE damage in people with MS is stem cell therapy using the patient’s own stem cells. Unfortunately insurance companies would rather pay for MS patients to take interferons for the rest of their lives (which are nowhere near 100% effective. I should know after 5 different meds that they don’t work very well at all.) rather than pay for a therapy that could completely cure them.

My husband and I have actually discussed divorcing so that I could just get on Medicare and Medicaid to cover my medical bills. We moved 2 years ago from Missouri to Illinois (So my husband would have more opportunities in his employment because his company is based in Illinois and they were reorganizing and he was sure his department was going to be liquidated in Missouri. He was right, it was. If we had not moved he would have been unemployed right now) and while we had HMO insurance in Missouri, his company only offers PPO insurance in the area we live at in Illinois (yet had we bought a home 10 min from the city we could have gotten HMO insurance. The reason they don’t offer HMO in the area we live at is so the company can save money since most of their workers live in the city we live in they cut costs by only providing PPO insurance which is bankrupting us. Had we known this we would have looked outside of the city for a home. As it is, now we are stuck for at least 5 years unless we want to be out a lot of money. Then we would be unable to buy anywhere else. We would rent but we have 3 animals and here in Illinois they can charge you $25/mon. per pet plus the pet deposit equal to your monthly rent minus the extra $25/mon. per pet. Most rent here for a 2 bedroom is in the $700 range. We couldn’t afford to rent) We have a $2000 account that his work provides us with in order to help cover out of pocket costs, but that is $2000 between myself, my autistic son, and my husband (Thank the Gods my husband is as healthy as a horse, knock on wood). I have to have a yearly MRI to keep up on the progress of my MS. I have many other medical issues including Ehler’s Danlos syndrome (a tissue connectivity disorder that for me causes frequent dislocations), I have a severe back injury that, ironically enough is the reason I am disabled rather than my MS being the reason (this injury was also courtesy of a former employer who ignored safety issues brought to their attention and by doing so caused the injury in the first place. Frankly I think that THEY should be the ones forced to pay my disability rather than the feds because it was the greedy corporation that CAUSED my disability in the first place. I did sue them, unfortunately I had a shit lawyer who didn’t even seem to try to call the company out on their unsafe practices and I got a pretty shitty settlement. But it was enough to pay for all of the piling up medical bills. I stopped going to the company’s workman’s comp doctor after my own doctor said he was causing more harm than good. It is thanks to the workman’s comp doctor that I have nerve entrapment in my upper left trapezius muscle, because instead of doing a CT scan or MRI to look at the damage his first idea was for me to go to physical therapy. The physical therapy exacerbated the issue because the twin tears in the muscle had not had time to heal yet. Now the entire upper left side of my back & shoulder is covered in scar tissue and I have nerves that are trapped INSIDE of that hard scar tissue making it very painful for me to walk, stand, sit, or lay for long periods of time and limits the mobility of my entire left side. It has also caused mass neuropathy on the left side of my body. But what do we need worker safety oversight, amiright?) The back injury was so severe that I was determined to be 20% full body disabled. That basically means that my back injury effected my entire body and my ability to move it normally. It is the equivalent of losing an arm and a leg, only accompanied by much more pain. I cannot turn my head to either side anymore than a quarter of the distance the average person can. I also physically cannot lift any more than 10 lbs. On top of that I have more intestine than the average human being. According to the gastrointestinal doc who did the colonoscopy my intestines are twice as long and twisty/windey. I also have a genetic mutation called MTHFR. This is a good and bad mutation. On one hand I will never bleed to death. On the second hand it also causes blood clots to form IN my body that lead to minor and moderate strokes if not properly medicated.

Now, I just found out yesterday, that I have to have a hysterectomy. If I don’t, in two weeks I am going to be in so much pain again that I won’t be able to even move. All I will be doing is curling into a ball on my bed and bawling my eyes out while my autistic son looks on unsure how to help his mom. I don’t know if anyone else has ever had an experience like this, but I did once when I was a child. It is scary when the people who are supposed to be the strong stable ones in your life are crying and you don’t know how to help them. Mom’s don’t cry. Or if mom’s do cry they never cry where their child can see it because it is our job to fix our kid’s boo-boos, not for them to fix ours.

I am terrified. Not about the surgery, I know that I will be fine. What I am scared of is the struggling that my family will have to do in order to pay for this surgery, even WITH insurance. I am afraid my husband is going to stress so much about juggling bills that it is going to kill him. His family has a history of heart disease and his dad died young in his 40’s. My husband is 38 and he spends almost every waking moment trying to juggle bills and make sure we can eat. He makes over $47,000 a year, but on one income practically (with my disability checks not even reaching $600 a month I am honestly amazed at how he manages to pay our bills.) I am afraid that one day my medical costs are going to get to a point where we lose our home. We don’t live anywhere fancy. A VERY SMALL 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo we managed to find for around $57,000. It isn’t like we are living in a mansion here.

I have considered throwing on old clothes and dirtying my face a little and going downtown to panhandle simply to make things less stressful to him. Unfortunately my extreme intolerance to heat and cold prevents me from doing that. And by extreme intolerance I mean, I can get heat stroke in 90 degree weather with a breeze going and holding still. I can get hypothermia in less than 10 minutes out in 0 degree weather WITHOUT a breeze and wearing 3 coats, gloves, hats, and with hand warmers in my pockets. I can’t even go to an amusement park unless the weather is going to be in the low to mid 70’s without getting heat stroke.

And all the while these self absorbed, lying asshole politicians sit up there dictating whether or not I have a right to live. Who the hell made these jackasses God? Who said they have a right to tell me whether or not I am worth keeping alive? Or my son,for that matter. We can’t even pay for his therapies anymore. We just can’t afford it. Right now we are spending every penny we have to keep me alive and somewhat functional. I feel like I have failed as a parent because I cannot afford to get him the services he need, but I can’t afford to keep me alive and pay for his services as well. That should not be a choice any parent has to make.

And THAT is what frustrates me the most and why I feel that I am not represented at all in Congress. There is nobody like me in Congress. There is not a single one of them who have struggled, suffered, or had to choose between their own life and treatment for their child. None of them have, because 99.9% of them were born with golden spoons in their mouths and nannies to wipe their asses. Hardly a damned one of them has had to fight, struggle, bleed and cry to get where they are. They had it handed to them with bows wrapped around it. Don’t we all wish we had it that easy.

And, to top it all off, after almost 9 years of almost constant, agonizing, debilitating pain and taking loads of different meds to help mitigate my pain (aka non-existent pain that makes one consider suicide no matter how strongly they are against it) I finally found something that actually makes me pain free for a time. It is wonderful and miraculous and I would use it all the time just so I can stop thinking of the many different ways I can kill myself and make it look like an accident, except that it is unaffordable to do so. That miraculous substance that finally made my pain go away. The ancient medicinal cure for so many ailments, including pain that isn’t really there, just happens to not be covered under insurance. Shocking, right? That is because our government asshats who lord over us all like King George eating their cake while watching the rest of us starve, deemed it illegal back during the Korean war. That miracle cure is called cannabis.

Since I have been taking medical marijuana I have discovered many things. First and foremost, I am not 19 anymore and apparently I have forgotten much more from my youth than I thought I had because I don’t remember having this much trouble smoking it when I was 19. But I discovered so many other things too. I discovered that no lab manufactured pill can combat pain that isn’t really there better than MS. I also discovered that I am a better parent now that I am not in constant, non-stop agonizing pain. I have more patience and I am less likely to yell at my son for small things like I used to. I am more apt to engage people in a calm and cool manner than I used to be when I was in constant pain. Being able to sleep for 8 hours without waking up every 2 hours and having to get up and move to relieve the pain makes me a more pleasant person to be around and less likely to want to punch someone for irritating me. Basically…pot makes me less of a raging asshole because I am tired, irritable, and in pain. I am a better wife and partner because the pain doesn’t keep me from doing things around my house that need to be done.

Unfortunately, when a 1/8 ounce costs $60 that is not conducive to me getting my pain relief. I suppose these medical marijuana programs and compassionate Care is only offered to the rich just like everything else in this country? Hell, I could go down to the street corner and buy an 1/8 for $20, but because I am a law abiding citizen I don’t. But not doing so is seriously bankrupting me and again, no person should have to choose between being a good wife and mother and going bankrupt.

There is a fundamental breakdown in our government, our society and our humanity in this country and until we do something to change that fact, we are going to continue to slide down that death spiral until it is too late to save this country. Then, all hell will end up breaking loose and frankly that would be a shame. This country has the potential to be Great, Mr. President. But it isn’t going to get there by ignoring science and returning to the way things were. Nor will taking away insurance from those who so desperately need it. Nor will it become Great by building a wall. Instead of building barriers to keep people out, you should be building bridges across this great divide that YOU helped to create, to help bring people TOGETHER to understand one another. Tyrants build walls, leaders build bridges. Which one are you going to be?

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