Note: I’ve been struggling with how to word this blog post. I don’t want to come across as seeking charity – because I’m not at all. I also don’t want to diminish other people’s struggles with things they have going on in their lives. Seeing as this is my blog about my health and awareness of my health, I’m going to try and portray it as accurately as possible to how I am feeling towards my personal situation and what I’ve learned from it.
August has been really busy for me – lots of commitments on a very small budget (due to medical bills amongst other things). Nobody enjoys that split second when they realize they have all but $50 to their name, but it’s how you handle it from that moment forward that really counts.
I’ve been fortunate enough for most of my life thus far to have a decent savings and not having to scrape by paycheck-to-paycheck. Then, sometimes, you get stuck in a Perfect Storm of troubles that leave you wondering what the heck happened to your financial cushion. Suddenly you realize you’re not in as great of a position financially as you thought and you’ve really got to buckle down and figure out how you’re going to get through it.
My first trouble was stress. Although I’ve understood that I have adrenal fatigue for some time now, it really wasn’t until my Autoimmune Hepatitis diagnosis that I started to falter in my ability to control my stress. I was finding myself very upset, anxious, and overall stressed out by my job. So, I decided to take my concern to my boss and figure out what to do. We came to the conclusion that I would work two days from home. That saves me a total of 5 hours of driving time a week, plus I get to work in the quiet of my own living room and decompress as much as possible. It was really something I was thankful for and something that both my therapist and I saw as beneficial to my health right away. (It was soon after that my liver enzymes returned to normal – coincidence?)
Second was my liver biopsy. I ended up with thousands of dollars in medical bills that I wasn’t expecting at all. When my insurance approved the procedure, they conveniently left out all of the information regarding the amount of money I would be responsible for when everything was said and done.
The final straw presented itself in the form of a certain gas tax bill that wasn’t passed by our great state of New Jersey. I won’t get into that, but ultimately, the company I work for is directly affected by the result of that bill not passing and therefore my hours have been cut. At first I thought it would be okay, but I very quickly learned that my cushy savings was diminishing before my very eyes. I asked my boss if he had any timeline for when I could have my hours back, but he countered with a change to my work schedule that I just can’t meet at this time due to my health.
At first, the initial shock of all these things happening at almost the same time took me completely off guard. I had no idea what I was going to do to pay these bills, but after a few days of letting things settle, I was able to revisit the situation and reconfigure my finances. It never ceases to amaze me what time can do to help a situation. I’ve since started selling some of my belongings that I don’t feel I need anymore, so at least I have some extra funds coming in that way. I’ll see how things go, even if that means selling some of my more prized possessions sometime down the road.
The best way to keep your head above water when you’re feeling down is to keep busy. Luckily, Erik’s parents invited us down to Delaware last weekend and treated us to a day in Baltimore to check out the National Aquarium. I hadn’t been there in years so I was excited to check it out and take some photos!
I can’t remember what year it was when I was last in Baltimore, but I had absolutely no recollection of the inner harbor or any of what the city looked like, really. I’d like to go back and check it out some more one day, though. I mean, check out this Barnes & Noble:
The aquarium was really, really crowded that day, so it was tough to get close to a lot of the marine life, but I was able to take some photos turtles and fish and my favorite: the jellies!
Taking photos of the tanks and capturing the animals in focus proved to be difficult, especially with the varying light in each room of the aquarium. I think I was able to figure it out eventually.
At one point we ended up in this room that was surrounded by a fish tank. It was so cool.
Then it was off to see the jellyfish! I took a lot of photos in this part of the aquarium, so please bare with me, haha.
They were so pretty! I’m pretty sure everyone else in our group left me behind in there because I was taking too long.
Erik’s nieces wanted to ride the dragon boats on the harbor, so we headed that way to close out our Baltimore adventure.
Being able to take this little road trip definitely helped take my mind off of the Perfect Storm for a little bit. It’s still something I’m trying to work out in my head, but I’m feeling much less anxious about it now. I am forever grateful to Erik’s family for inviting us down to join in on the trip. I’ve been trying really hard to just take life one day at a time, sometimes I just need a reminder to recenter myself so I can get myself in that mindset.
Thanks for reading,