The last 2 weeks (I can't believe it has been so long) have taught me a great deal about how easy it is to get so comfortable in our lives. OTs make a great deal of money. I've never actually made what I should've because I've missed work with disability or not worked full time. But I've always had a very good income for a single person.
It is startling to face life 100% differently than I expected 2 weeks ago. At that point I was ready for an income decline and change to COBRA. But I knew that I could afford to make payments for counseling and paying off medical bills and just keeping things as they were. I never thought much about how much is spent without consideration. I have had a home phone line for years that I didn't need because I thought I had to to have DSL. I was very wrong. I had intended to put some bills from my surgery on a credit program through the hospital. Now I'm applying for forgiveness and praying that they'll accept special circumstances since I do still have insurance. With this the trick is proving I don't have income. My taxes look like I do. I did work more than half the year. It says bank statements are an option; mine show the short term disability I've been living on which expired and loan money from my mom.
I try to only do 1-2 of these daily because they are hard. I am learning that there are things that are easier to swallow than others. I am ok with food stamps and when I can get it SSI. I paid into those programs and happily will use them. What is dreadfully hard for me is asking for forgiveness of something I normally would pay, like medical bills. I simply can't afford the co-pays that I have left. I also am never going to have the money to pay my student loans again. There are programs for someone who becomes disabled. But asking for forgiveness is so hard; I feel I am cheating the system. I know that's not true and that I did not seek out disability but it is so hard anyway.
This is where I have to spend a lot of time reminding myself that I worked as hard as I could for many years and that I didn't ask for this. I wouldn't judge someone else for doing this; it's just hard to do it yourself. One thing I found out from Dr. Brain yesterday is that the 2 years I need to be disabled to finally get Medicare will start at a day of disability that hopefully will go clear back to August. My back-pay will only go to the last few weeks since I did have income through disability but hopefully I will be able to get Medicare in August of 2013 which would greatly help. (If not it will be February of 2014 which isn't that far off, except that COBRA is ridiculously expensive and leaves these huge co-pays I can't do anything about.)
And I must take meds and try to sleep since I have that SSDI interview in the morning.