Do you remember reading my post about Ordinary Things? Of course you do. You loved it so much you told everybody you know to read it, too.
In that post, I mentioned that I filled out the 22 page Washington State Health Questionnaire. Health insurance has been an ongoing battle in my adult life, ever since I left the safety of my parent's Cobra and went venturing into the dark waters of individual plans. Fear it! I've been rejected before, which, considering what a terrifically healthy gal I am, is quite terrifying. What would happen if I actually got sick? It. Happens.
Because of all the stress surrounding insurance, actually dealing with it is my very least favorite thing to do. I'd rather do something truly retched, like get a pap smear. Which is ironic, since I can't even do that until I get insurance.
So anyway, I felt like a million bucks the other day, the day I completed the 22 page Health Questionnaire and placed it smartly into the hands of the Postal Worker. The job application was in. The health insurance applied for. I'M A WIZARD AT LIFE AND I'M GOING TO WRITE A BOOK ABOUT HOW GOOD I AM AT DOING ALL THE THINGS!!
(I almost congratulated myself on my grown-up ways by trying a new cake-pop flavor at the Starbucks next door- thank GOD I knew better.)
This past Wednesday was our weekly yoga and dinner meet up at the Garden House.
When I got home, stretched and rejuvenated and superior, I found a thick envelope lying on my bed. From the insurance people! An envelope! And thick! Yay! I'm a writer, so I know what a rejection letter looks like. Rejection slips always arrive in sad, flimsy, onion-skin thin envelopes. They ought to just send a postcard that says NO on the back.
But this- this was weighty! It was a Steak of a letter! I sank onto my bed, feeling a little thrilled at how neatly my life was falling together. Next up, I'd score an interview for The Job. Then I could get a place to live, bring my little dog back to the city. Lose five pounds, complete a Triathlon, get a book deal, get married, pop out acouplakids. It all starts here!
I tore open the paper and pulled out the letter inside.
Dear applicant. Thank you for applying. We are unable to review your application....(eyes scrolling down)....the 22 page health questionnaire you filled out is invalid.....we realize you downloaded this 22 page questionnaire off our website....the place where it said 'download here to apply'.....but we are still not going to look at it....we've included a new 22 page questionnaire. Please go ahead and reapply.
The envelope also included my original 22 page Health Questionnaire with a big red X through all 300 of my neatly filled in scantron bubbles.
They really should have just sent a post card: Sucker! Fuck your time! Ha ha ha!
The pages dropped out of my hands and floated to the floor. I turned the light off. I curled up in bed in a little ball of frustration. I made up this song: Oh life, Oh life Oh! Why you gots to be so Hard....so HARRD....
At the very least, it's spring. It's still cold. It's still raining. But we know it's spring because there is evidence everywhere. Things are growing.
And food is coming out of the ground. At dinner on Wednesday, we were flipping through cook books wondering what to make for dessert. Someone suggested a rhubarb crisp, so Ammen wandered right out into the garden and pulled some out.
This is how we know winter is over: swamped, quenched, resilient vegetables emerging from the soil. Otherwise, we might be fooled into thinking it's late November- dreary, draining, wilting, dark.
I wait to get health insurance, and for the person who decides such things to call me and offer me an interview. I wait for some financial security, the ability to take a deep breath in, and for the sun to comes out. None of this is a metaphor. I want some money. I want some flippin' sunshine. I'm 26. I'm experienced. I'm sharp. I'm educated. I'm nice. It's May. It's spring. COME ON ALREADY.
But all of us are waiting for something.
And while we wait, we eat. We eat spring.
And if spring doesn't show up and we go right into summer, then we'll eat summer, too.
And if summer never shows up? Like last year? Well in that case, we're moving. All together. To a place where there are four true seasons. Where health insurance is guaranteed for everyone. Someplace like Vermont.