Sick and Single, Who’ll Care for Me?
A wave of relief swept over me when, at my first appointment to a new rheumatologist, she said she had a name for the elusive condition that threatened my life and sickened me for more than a decade and a half. I now knew, for certain, that I was right; all of my symptoms were tied to just one disease. However, my joy was short-lived. Seconds later, I was told that the autoimmune disease battering my body, igG4 related systemic disease, had no cure. As a single woman, I wondered, who would care for me if I could not?
At that time, I lived alone in a townhouse, in a city where I knew no one other than my next door neighbor. My home had stairs, slot of them, which often, pain would not allow me to climb. I worked full-time to maintain health insurance and prescription coverage. My job also allowed me to try meeting the debilitating obligations of my never-ending medical bills because there was no one else providing me with financial support.
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