Over the past two months, I have been going back and forth with health insurance companies and the New York State Health Exchange to sort out an issue with my daughter’s health insurance. At the end of last year there was a clerical oversight and paperwork glitch which ultimately resulted in my daughter’s coverage being terminated. Premiums were paid. Assumptions were made that everything was in the clear. That is until I received a call early February from her pediatrician informing us that a claim had been denied. It’s been a hassle ever since trying to get it resolved.
I’ve been patient and I’ve been understanding, giving the organizations involved time to process the paperwork necessary – I’m not unreasonable I know things don’t happen overnight.
The patience ran out today.
What triggered that? This morning I received notice from the state that our request had been processed. Not a call like had been promised. And what they processed was exactly what we had requested NOT happen.
So I called. Again. And, was triaged to the appropriate department. Again. And, When the representative from that department answered, I apologized in advance for getting frustrated explaining this has been a long and stressful process. He then made it more stressful.
After explaining the situation. Explaining what I received this morning and inquiring what we may be able to do about it, he coldly responded, “That is a ridiculous and odd request. Issues like yours would have been resolved months ago. Don’t you think it is odd that you are only now bringing it to our attention?”
Shocked. Thinking he must not have understood the issue, I frantically reiterated that I had been going back and forth with the health insurances for almost two months to get this resolved. He then retorted, “Not that I don’t believe you, but if that was the case it would seem more likely the insurance company would be calling on your behalf.” After stating that, he also countered, “Did you pay your premium?”
Responding that I had. He retorted, “Were they on time?”
I admitted that February was late, but it was because I didn’t realize upon enrolling I needed to pay two months premium. But also added that as soon as I received the notice I caught up immediately.
He cockily responded, “Well there is your problem. You need to talk to the insurance company to sort this out.”
I was infuriated and demanded he put me on with a supervisor. When he told me he didn’t think one would be available but he’d try. I told him not to try, but to do. At which point we stopped listening to one another, he informed me he was hanging up and did.
I was livid. I was in tears. I recognized that perhaps I didn’t handle myself as well as I could have, but this man was condescending and made me feel two inches tall.
That feeling didn’t leave me for hours.
After a couple hours, I became self-aware and knew I had to do something to get out my funk. I decided to reflect upon the situation. Why he responded the way he did. Why I felt the way I did. I was looking for insight.
Thinking about him, I came to the following conclusion. It is my belief that he assumed I am an individual who scams the system. My daughter has Child Health Plus, which is a low cost health care solution for children primarily utilized by the unemployed, underemployed and Medicaid population. But it IS available to all individuals. Because my husband and I are both self-employed and as a result purchase our insurance as individuals, Child Health Plus was the most reasonable and comprehensive insurance solution for her. His comments, especially about our delinquency with payment, I believe support this assumption.
This clarity has helped me understand his actions. Doesn’t mean I think he was right… but at least I see where he is coming from.
On to Me. I recognize that what got under my skin was he made me feel uneducated and a negligent mother. These are both sore spots for me, and he rubbed salt into the wounds. How?
Uneducated. Education was ALWAYS stressed in my family and for a long time I defined myself by my intellect. In fact, one of the hardest emotional obstacles I had to overcome after my car accident was the fact I didn’t complete my undergraduate degree (I since have). More recently, I sometimes struggle since leaving my corporate job to pursue mediumship full time with the thought that my intellect isn’t being challenged. So to be belittled and made to feel like I should have known better, hit a nerve.
A Bad Mother. I think every parent worries they are going to screw up and damage their child. Right now her well-being is a very real concern. Without health insurance, God forbid something happens to her today or tomorrow. As her parent, it is my job to ensure she is taken care of. Right now she’s not. Whose fault is that? Being her parent, I do place that weight on myself. And this thought is confirmed because I know that as a parent I am LEGALLY obligated to keep her insured. Which leads to the concern (however unrealistic), what if CPS were notified and she was taken from me?
The fears. The weaknesses. Things I see in myself. All brought to the surface by one man. One man I spoke to for less than 30 minutes. And, who quite honestly, might not have even given me his real name.
We all have circumstances like this where someone makes us feel less than. Why do we give them that power?
I believe it’s because, as I mentioned, it brings out our inner fears and our perceived weaknesses.
That might be why. It might not. But, what I deem to be more important is the question "What do we do about it?"
First and foremost, we have to recognize that someone has made us feel less than. Acknowledge those feelings and then do a little soul searching. Reflect on why they responded the way they did and then why it made you feel the way it did. It took me a few hours, but I did it.
After that, LET IT GO. The longer you hold on to it, the more pain it can cause, and the more you begin to believe those feelings. Letting it go is quite honestly the reason I’m writing this Blog. Rather than running the conversation with the health exchange and the subsequent conversation with the insurance company over again and again in my head, I’ve organized my thoughts and got them out of my head. Getting them out results in letting it go.
Once it’s let go, it’s time to MOVE ON! While I can’t quite do that yet, I am still dealing with the issue and waiting for the insurance company to call back (hopefully with good news – after hearing what happened with NYS they said they are going to try and pull some strings), what I do plan on doing is not thinking about that A** any more. And perhaps have a dance party with my Baby Girl. Always good to shake it off.