Enough is Enough

Since I've changed all my eating habits and general lifestyle I've been waking up bright and early (sometimes because of me sometimes because of my old doggy) but I usually use that time to lay in bed and cruise social media. I'm not sure if at this point this is the best thing for my stress levels though, YOWZERS. With the current political environment LOTS of things have been INFURIATING me but I'm trying to be calm and proactive. Please NOTE I'm pretty much a raging liberal and this post is about to get REAL, or at least I'm about to get REAL with how I feel.

Enough is enough.

This entire election from beginning to end has been incredibly divisive, I had enough and finally opened my big fat mouth for a reason and started voicing my political opinion. People want to say it's not personal but for me it is. I truly believe I was misdiagnosed in August 2015, my lymphnodes under my armpits were clear after surgery so no further testing/scanning was done and I was diagnosed Stage II, then began my chemo cocktail (whichever is the standard of care for your particular breast cancer) they send you on your way after radiation and say we will do a scan in the next few months to make sure you're clear and then whole thing is wrapped up in a pretty little pink bow right? WRONG. Flash forward August 2016 after a July PET scan noticed nodules in my lungs and a lymphnode that lit up, I underwent VATS (OW this hurt) and discovered Stage IV cancer in my lungs. Now how could this be? It spread there already after just a few months? Impossible right?? Well I have news for you, it was already in my lungs even though my lymphnodes remained clear, oh shit did I just blow up your standard of care? OMG ALERT someone. Except they don't, they say it could be for any number of reasons, well that wasn't exactly the story I was told from the beginning. My oncologist actually said they were going to CURE me and I believed him. Looking back on paperwork from November 2015 (I was in the Emergency Room at St. John's for shortness of breathe and a swollen arm-blood clot in the infusion site-another fun side effect no one tells you about) and I remembered emailing my oncology nurse about the paperwork they had explained to me. I voiced my concern in person and through an email and nothing was done. It makes me sick to my stomach to think about, but you can't change the past. What I CAN do is use this blog to post about and EDUCATE people about what actually happens when you are sick.

I belong to several online forums for women with breast cancer, one in particular is for women who have Stage IV Metastatic BC (not a club I was excited about joining, it isn't exactly like receiving your membership card to the Soho House ya know?) and I decided to post asking if anyone believed they were misdiagnosed from the beginning. The response was overwhelming, doctors pushing them off, telling them their bone pain was from an old injury, their shortness of breathe was asthma, their headaches were because of stress, their boobs are just dense, that's just hormonal, ETC ETC ETC and each of these women was diagnosed Stage IV. HOW DOES THIS HAPPEN you ask? HOW DO WE CONTINUALLY let people die? Because you're choosing to.

I have had SO MANY arguments with my conservative friends and they always leave me stunned. I know people who HATE on ObamaCare but have had NO problem collecting unemployment for long periods of time after being fired from a job (deservedly) and were totally capable of working. That's called being a hypocrite. I also personally know one or two that owe money all around town and vote against things like social security "handouts."

I AM THE FACE OF GOVERNMENTAL HEALTH CARE.

I AM THE FACE OF SOCIAL SECURITY

You are OK with donating money and hugging me and telling me how horrible you feel for me and my condition. Well I know A WHOLE lot of girls that are WAY worse off than me and don't have the kind of support I do. They don't know a bunch of people with some money to spare to help their friend. Are they looking for handouts when THEY apply for social security?

Let me tell you about my application for Social Security in a nut shell starting in August up to my most recent letter received this week....
1) I fill out paperwork stating I have Stage IV Breast Cancer (Incurable disease and when googled you see it says the median time a woman lives with this disease is 2 years-NOT happening to me, because I said so)
2) My doctor fills out paper work confirming diagnosis
3) Social Security says they need more info.
4) I get on phone with Social Security
5) I gather pay stubs and evidence of my inability to work full time
6) I receive another phone call and more paperwork
7) I receive THE EXACT SAME paperwork saying they need MORE of the SAME information (cue me ripping little curly hairs from my head)

It is NOT easy ever to get Governmental help so let me just say that right now. If you have the balls to go toe to toe with me on this I dare you, you will lose.

Let me tell you about why these women under 40 all got diagnosed Stage IV.

Because what the government puts into law as regulations for our healthcare is bullshit. You know they want the age of a woman raised to 45 before she can get her first insurance covered mammogram. 45?!!?!?! ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?!?!?!?!? I would be LONG dead if they waited that long, I know too many women diagnosed in their 30s and their 20s! And I swear to God if one more person says I'm too young for this I will lose it. Cancer doesn't care and neither does our health care system or the people around me that vote apparently. Now you may say "Jenny it's not like there was a specific breast cancer Prop on the ballot or anything" You're right there wasn't. But this is talking about Women's Health Care, this is talking about JUST health care. This also just boils down to empathy and right and wrong for me.

I WAS DIAGNOSED IN A SLIDING SCALE WOMEN'S CLINIC
Basically a Planned Parenthood but not. But sure let's de-fund THAT cause women just get abortion after abortion right?!? You see you can't have it one way or the other. You can't have empathy for me and my struggle and not want the system changed. I am one person, there are LOTS of us metavivors out there and we ALL have similar stories, there are LOTS of people out there with other ailments and similar stories.

Time to open our eyes, look around us and notice what's happening right in front of our privileged faces.

XOXO,

Jenny

Comments

  1. BRAVO! You are right on. Your healthcare is directly tied to voter's choices. Thank you for sharing your story. Enough IS enough!

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  2. YES!!! This is just another one of your brilliant posts.

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  3. I think you found your fight there girl! So proud of all the work you're doing and remember, you've never been in a room that didn't have everybody stop to hear you. Maybe that pretty voice of yours was made for screaming, not singing :)

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  4. So on point! We need to defend and support women's healthcare programs and initiatives. Also, dealing with a government paperwork merry-go-round when you are trying to reduce stress in your life is beyond frustrating, and counterproductive to the goal of social "security". Thanks for getting real about these details.

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