It's the end of the year. My insurance has an out of pocket maximum, after which point you no longer have copays for visits of any sort or medications. I received a $13,000 powerchair at the end of April, and unlike last year when we met the cap in Dec, this year all of a sudden in the beginning of July my whole family got practically free healthcare. We still had to pay the monthly premium, but we all began thinking up ways to capitalize on this. I continued to go to physical therapy past the point where it was useful, because it was free and a trainer costs $. After 6 or 7 years of talking myself out of getting new AFOs, because most years I've worn them less then half a dozen times, so what's the point, I got casted for a new pair last week, just under the wire. I also decided to try out a new primary care physician, since it'd been 14mos since my last physical, even though the plan had been to wait until April. I also managed by fate to get my annual follow up with my physiatrist moved from January to December.
It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Fun*Run Time
It's ALREADY that time of year again: The ADAPT Fun*Run for Disability Rights is April 22nd 2012. Maryland's fundraising goal is $8,000 this year. Yes, that's right, $8,000
Donate $1! Donate $10! Donate $100! Donate $1,000! JUST DONATE so we can FREE OUR PEOPLE! http://adaptfunrun.org/runner.php?id=7 I thank you very much for your support!
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Oddly both of those appointments, although not originally scheduled this way, ended up being yesterday. I really like my new primary care physician (PC), and even though I never plan on seeing her because I am the healthiest person I know, it's nice to know that I found someone I am comfortable with. Although I noticed slight judgement in her voice. If both of those appointments hadn't ended up on the same day I wouldn't have noticed the same judgement from my physiatrist, whom I have seen just over half my life.
PC doc who saw me walking down the hall, came in and almost immediately said "the baclofen & valium are for muscle spasms from cerebral palsy?" which wasn't noted on my paperwork because there wasn't a line next to "other."
"What's the lamictal for?" I was a little surprised she didn't ask me if I had seizures, as 1 in 3 people with CP do. Maybe that was on the list and I didn't check it
"bipolar." That wasn't listed on the form either, so I had checked both depression and anxiety instead.
The next question she asked me was who my psychiatrist is, and then she asked me how I was doing in respect to that. My physiatrist asked me the same question although the conversation went like this. "J. M---. I have a new one again and I don't like her all that much either." And I got a look, which was fine then, but not the next one, when she asked me how I was doing. Actually, it was really the tone in her voice when she asked me. She has every right to give me all the looks she wants. I didn't name this blog "Uppity Crip" for nothing. She knows half the time she tells me not to do something I do it anyway. Flashback to my Aug appt: "You really should have consulted me before you did that." "I did. I didn't like your answer." :-)
Anyway, the tone in her voice was the same tone I'd gotten that morning. It was as if to say that I'm not capable of doing what I should be doing, that I don't know. It was as if to say that people with this diagnosis don't have the capacity to make responsible, smart decisions. That we're all a mess 100% of the time. PC doc doesn't have a right to make that judgement. The other one knows just how much of a mess I've been over the years, but I'd still like some credit.
I mentioned this to my shrink this afternoon in less words, and she gave me a look. It was a different look. It maybe had a hint of exasperation. So I replied with "I know what I should be doing..." Infer from that what you will, but I do try.
This isn't enough to send me looking for another PC doc, because it was a tone of concern from both of them, not a tone of fear. Not a tone of "all people with this diagnosis are violent," but to me it was still a tone of well meaning prejudice.
Well meaning prejudice, you ask? How can there be such a thing as a well meaning prejudice? Well meaning prejudices are "permissible prejudices," statements or thoughts that are so ingrained in society that they are taken for granted as truth. Mary Johnson does a fantastic job of discussing permissible prejudices as they relate to disability in her book Disability Awareness -- Do it Right! The inferiority of black people used to be a permissible prejudice. Now even racists know that society frowns upon them even if they don't give a damn about it. See this page for the definition of a permissible prejudice as it relates to homophobia. In my google search I noticed people referring to homophobia as the last permissible prejudice. What about prejudices against fat people? What about ableism, which encompasses every disability, including this one? I beg to differ with that blanket statement.
It rubbed me the wrong way, being judged by smart people who I'd hope would know better. But if they really don't know better, if they had no clue they were giving off a vibe, is it really right for me to judge them for judging me? It's what I'm trying to figure out, but I so far have no conclusion. Because if you really know me and you judge me on the basis of me being me, you might be right, even if it doesn't feel good.