Mixed Feelings


Spoke with my mom this morning.  “I’ve got great news” she announced.

Hoping it was that my recently unemployed dad was no longer among the unemployed, she did share some great news.  The bank wants to help them stay in their house.

An internal bank error followed by my mom’s illness that had her travelling the hospital’s revolving door, put them at risk to lose their house.  Their attorney tried intervening on their behalf.  My dad tried. My mom tried.  Everyone tried.  In the end, they were pretty much told they were going to lose their house.  They owed too much. My mom, at this point, could not work due to the Crohn’s and the cancer.  And they chose her health over worrying about the house.

Fast forward over a year later, the bank is rewriting their loan.  They want them to stay.

“Why did you stop making payments?” the woman asked my mom.

“I was sick, on a leave of absence from my job, in and out of the hospital, and no one cared.”

“Well, we care now.  We’re fixing the loan.”

Awesome news.

Punctuated by…..

…..”oh yeah, my Crohn’s treatments aren’t working anymore.  The doctors want to go to something much stronger, but I’m saying no.  Anyway, about the house….”

Excuse me??

Her Crohn’s is getting worse??

I steered the conversation back to her health.  And she explained that her specialist doesn’t want to treat it anymore with the drug that was working.  It’s having zero effect on her now.  The 5 weeks of reprieve has changed to a couple days at most.  They want to put her on the strong stuff……

…..but the insurance says ‘no’ she says.

I can tell when someone is hiding behind something.  And in this case, it’s her standing behind the insurance.  Why isn’t she arguing with them then?  If this is the next course of action, why is she risking getting worse?

“It’s expensive,” she explains, “the initial treatment for a generic is over $7000 for the insurance company. The one they want to use is a lot more.  And we won’t talk about side effects.”

I knew I was onto something when I heard those last words.  I asked what they are.  She said death is one of them.  She isn’t going to risk it.  She said that it can screw up the rest of her body creating more  problems – problems that could ultimately kill her.  She is fine – she is good – the old drug will work.  It has to work because she isn’t willing to try the new one.  Even if the insurance says yes.

A year ago, she was closer to remission from the disease.

Now she is sliding back to where she was.


And she’s worried about the house.

Fuck the house.  I’ll rent them a house – I’ll pay for the house.  I will take care of the house.

But damn it, who is going to take care of her.  She clearly isn’t.  My dad is clearly scared again.  My brothers know nothing, and likely won’t push.

I started pushing her to try dietary adjustments.  I tried pushing her to seek other things – other treatments from other doctors that may help.  While I appreciate the fact she is falling to her knees and praying for a solution….

…..hard to enjoy the house when you are back in the hospital.

And none of us – she, my dad nor I – can go through that again.

But let’s celebrate the house….


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