How public assistance saved my family

With House and Senate Republicans are trying to push through a repeal and replace bill to cut the Affordable Care Act, and with so much shaming going on around people who need any help from the government, I feel compelled to share my own story. You see, before Obamacare went into effect, I was denied insurance at a new job because I had a preexisting condition—I was pregnant. Public assistance saved my family.

Government assistance was the reason why we are not still saddled with thousands of dollars of medical bills. It helped me feed myself and my infant. A series of safety nets caught me and my family. Even with the help of the government, we relied on family members and strangers to stay fed, healthy and warm.

By sharing my story, I knowingly open up my own personal experience to judgment. But I do so because it’s easy to shame a stranger, but a lot harder to assume the worst about someone you know.

How public assistance and health insurance helped us before Obamacare went into effect. Ten Thousand Hour Mama Read more

Drawing blood and drawing strength

I always look forward to Peeper’s pediatrician check-ups, especially when—like at her 9-month appointment—they don’t involve shots. So a few weeks ago when we headed to the doctor, I was excited.

The check-up went great: Peeper even waved to her doctor. As we were about to leave, the pediatrician looked at one of the routine forms we’d filled out. She paused.

“You have antique furniture?”

Antique might be overstating it, but we do have a few old-ish pieces among the IKEA tables, bookshelves and such.

After asking us a few more questions, the doctor recommended we test Peeper’s blood for lead.

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