Tuesday, March 23, 2010

don't be hatin'

My heart is kind of beating fast in my chest as I begin to write this post. I don't know why. Well, yes I do. I'm taking my all about Jonah, all about our little life, cute pictures, sweet videos blog somewhere I've never taken it before... into the realm of politics (but not really). I know why I'm nervous. I don't want people to assume things about me or judge me for writing this. I don't want it to change your opinion of me or to make you think badly of me. I don't want those of you who come here just for the cuteness that is Jonah to have to read something you'd rather not. (So stop reading now if you are rolling your eyes.)

And I feel like an idiot for feeling that way, because I know what I am saying is fundamentally right and I feel like God is calling me to write it, so really, nothing else matters. Maybe I'm overreacting anyway. I don't know.

Here it goes.

I support healthcare reform.

(Holds arms up to block fire lit arrows that are careening down upon me.)

This is not a post in support of the new healthcare bill. It is not a post against. It's not about that.

It's not about the bill. It's about some of the extreme attitudes, broad statements, and hate surrounding the bill. I can't stand it. Really, it makes me feel all tight in my chest. I hate the hate. I can't stand it.

I hate the absolute statements that are being thrown around like "government takeover" and "my tax money paying for lazy people who don't want to work" and "conspiracy."

I know that people have concerns about many things - more government control, the manner the votes were obtained, tax increases on the wealthy, the effect on insurance premium rates, the possibility of waiting lists etc. I don't want to argue those points. That is not the point of this post.

The point is I hate the hatemongering. I hate the lies (or twisting and stretching of truths) to make people hate. Did I mention I hate it?

The truth (in our situation) is this:

Not all people who need government assistance are lazy people who don't want to work. I had to give up my job (and my health insurance) to stay home with Jonah. Not because I'm lazy and don't want to work but because I have to take care of him. My circumstances require me to stay at home. Jonah is on Matt's insurance. We decided not to put me on his plan because it was going to be way too expensive. So I now I pay for a sub-standard plan out of pocket and have a $5,000 deductible before it kicks in. Jonah FINALLY qualified for Medicaid after eight months of us jumping through hoops and struggling to pay our bills. And that is WITH insurance. If it hadn't been for donations from people who, for whatever reason, love us and care for us and for the help of generous family members, we could have very easily gotten in trouble (or had to sell our house) while we waited.

What if Jonah hadn't qualified? What if Matt were to lose his job? What if we couldn't pay the COBRA payments (which are RIDICULOUSLY high) and Jonah had a lapse in coverage? What if the next insurance company wouldn't accept him because he has a preexisting condition? What would we do?

I am very thankful for government involvement.

If it weren't for government assistance, Jonah wouldn't have a nutritionist, an occupational therapist, or a physical therapist. (Well, he probably would but we would be in very bad shape financially.) Jonah qualifies for those programs. We receive them for free. I am thankful for them. Jonah has Medicaid that covers our copays and prescriptions. I am thankful.

I am thankful that he won't be denied because of his preexisting condition.

Many of the families who need help are like us - forced out of work because of circumstances beyond their control - just trying to take care of their kids, their families, just trying to survive the hand they've been dealt. Many of them are not as fortunate as Matt and I are to have the resources and knowledge to apply for help in the first place. Many of them do not have family or friends making donations to help them get by. We are so blessed. We are the fortunate ones.

So please, before you make blanket statements about the people who are receiving the benefits of your tax dollars, think about situations like ours. It is so hard. And you just don't know until you've been there. (I definitely know that people DO take advantage and there are things about the system that are VERY messed up, so you don't need to argue that point. Believe me, I know.)

For me, it boils down to this. I want to be compassionate. I want the hatemongering to STOP. I want the fear tactics to cease. I want people to stop being so prideful long enough to listen to each other. I think Jesus calls us to take care of the sick, the hurting, and the poor. I think he calls for us to pray for our government and our leaders, whether we fully agree with them or not.

Whatever comes from all of this, whatever it entails, God knew it before it happened. He will carry us through it. It is not, unless he has planned it to be so, the end the world. And if it is, then I'm one step closer to seeing Jesus and my baby Gabe.

We need to discuss, listen, share, have open minds, but most of all LOVE. Nothing else really matters.

Try to see some good in things, even if you don't agree with all of it. And please, for the love of God (really), stop with the hate already.

It's making me sick.

On a much lighter note, Matt's mom kept Jonah this morning so I could get my hair cut today, I went to my first therapy session, and my mom kept Jonah tonight so Matt and I could go out to eat.

I got spoiled!

Here's my new do.

(Sorry for the dramatic sassy face look. It wasn't my intention... I just felt like a doofus smiling at my own cell phone.)


I'm cutting the comments off now before things get uglier. I was so encouraged by the positive sharing of views and LOVING tone of everything at the beginning, but OF COURSE it had to get nasty toward the end. That is so frustrating, guys. Really. I'm disappointed. If you can't say things in a loving way, just keep your mouth shut. This was a post on NOT hating. I guess I should have known though. Oh well. Thank you to the 98% of you who were loving and kind. I know you are in the majority.


Anne K. Leete said...

First, you look great!

Second, THANK YOU for this rational, well-reasoned post. People like Jonah are EXACTLY the reason that some form of bill was necessary. I really admire you for sharing about your financial struggle and for addressing this issue in a thoughtful and compassionate way. Having access to basic healthcare should not be so controversial!

Mothering in Minnesota said...

I rarely comment on blogs. I get nervous that I will say something silly or that someone will wonder why I have so much time on my hands, but I have to comment on this post. Thank you so much for providing your perspective. Your family and so many others like it are the reason that I think this health care reform legislation is so important. Thank you for writing this post.

In the Mix said...

I totally lurk on your blog and have for over a year now, praying for you guys along the way. This is my first comment and I have to say, "Amen, sister!"
Too much hate, not enough love, especially from the people who claim to serve Jesus.
Thanks for the post.

Joe, Christina, & Rocky said...

I will admit that I've got very little opinion on the healthcare issue, and should definitely pay more attention. The only views I really get are the people yelling on Facebook and Twitter. But reading your post really softened my heart towards all the people claiming "my tax money, my tax money" - really, I probably won't notice the few extra dollars taken out over the course of the year, and to remember that it helps families like yours makes it way more than worth it.
It makes me want to become more informed too - since I can't make my side of the argument be "But it's helping the families I blog-stalk!"

Prayers and hugs for your sweet family :)

Amanda said...

I don't comment often but I feel very similarly. I want to scream whenever I hear someone using extremist statements about the bill. I used the word "fear-mongering", but "hate-mongering" is perfect, as well.

Totally agree. :)

The Melda Family said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE your new do! :) You look amazing and I am so happy for you to enjoy your sexy new look! Very well written post too!

Rachel said...

Thank you for saying all the things I have been thinking about this bill and those who hate it. Our son's hospital bill after 340 days in the hospital after birth was over 1 million dollars. There is no way we could afford that, not even with the best insurance. There are people who need these reforms and our son, like Jonah, is one of them.

Judy Neagle Conley said...

Thank you, Patrice, for putting it just the way it is. My son has worked for the same company for about 15 years but they offer no health insurance. Many more people that I know are hard-working but employers offer no coverage and individual coverage is prohibitively expensive or in the case of preexisting conditions, impossible. Preach on, sister.

km said...

You had the guts to do what I'm too chicken (but desperately wanting) to do. Mad props for getting a new haircut. Maybe I'll get brave enough someday. :P

Risa said...

Don't think I've commented before but have followed since Jonah was born. I just wanted to say I totally understand. My hubby and I are self employed and getting insurance is difficult. We have a 4month old who has GERD and we are stuck on the so so insurance we currently have because insurance companies refuse to take people with pre existing conditions. I have always had cholesterol issues despite eating well and not being overweight... again try getting health insurance. We are the only employees of our business and do not have any buying power to get into the group insurance market place. We pay a lot of money every month for so-so insurance. I think most people agree that reform is needed... but are afraid that this particular bill is going to put a financial strain on the country that could really cause a lot of long term problems. That said... there are things that do need to change -- give small businesses buying power into the group insurance market place... stop letting individual insurance companies cherry pick who they want to cover.. eliminating people who might actually need to use their insurance! Help make insurance affordable etc. So as much as I think this bill had way too much in it, I hope that buried in it somewhere is some relief that will come our way without killing us in the process.

Angie said...

Love your post and I, too, am a blog lurker who rarely posts comments but I feel compelled to thank you for speaking what has been on my heart too. Unlike you though, I was not courageous enough to speak it. I've often felt ashamed to admit that I am completely IN FAVOR of health care reform because of the hate and the extreme, irrational views of many on the issue. It's a moral issue and simply the right thing to do and you spoke the words that have been on my heart for a long time. Thanks for having the courage to do it. I think you're awesome and an inspiration that God is using in a mighty way.

Proud Wifey And Mommii of 3 said...

I could have written this word for word. I wanna say Thank You for posting this.

Brittany said...

While I respectfully disagree, I appreciate you sharing. It is so refreshing to hear other peoples view when they are respectful about it. Your hair cut is super duper cute! And sweet baby Jonah is just as cute as always :)

Robin said...

Love your new Hair Cut it's really cute.
What you say on your blog is your business. I do feel everyone should have insurance. If us tax payers have to help out that is OK we have to take care of each other. Glad you enjoyed your day!
In Iowa

Libby said...

I definitely agree with you on health care. I am of the perspective that I wish there was even more government involvement (such as universal healthcare), but I most especially like your points about not spreading untruths and hate about people who disagree!

I also love your new haircut and am glad you've had some chances to get out today!

Precious 3 said...

Love your hair cut!

I think you did a wonderful job handling this subject. I am torn on the reform. I see the good and the bad. Whenever I feel myself getting upset, I just remind myself there are people who desperately need this reform.

My kids are on medicaid. We went 2 years with no insurance because we did not want the medicaid, but it became clear our kids needed it. The problem now? My daughter needs a surgery to save her vision in one eye, and medicaid is giving us serious problems with it. We've been fighting since Oct, and now they are saying MAYBE this summer. Maybe the reform will make it easier for medicaid to work properly, but I just don't have the faith in it. I DO have faith in my God. So, that's where I'll stand. I'll let Him work out the details, and trust the it will work out for the best. I'm a bit tired of hearing people gripe about it, from both sides. Thank you for handling so well.

Heather Allen said...

Oh my gosh you look gorgeous!!

Me, the boys and a Farm... said...

WOW you look AWESOME! LOVE, LOVE the new hair!

Thanks for the post tonight. Very well said. I was just "discussing" the same thing with a friend of mine yesterday via facebook...she is in total support of the bill...I on the other hand am not sure I am in support of the bill as much as just general "reform". The system is broken and broken badly...but the bill has its fair share of flaws? But, that is also a bit of a guess...from what I understand no-one really knows what the bill states, even the people that just voted on it. Anyway, my point was the was our "debate" ended was me saying I "hated" the "blanket statements about specific groups in particular...I feel like it shows close mindedness, and ignorance. Not that I haven't been guilty of making them myself...but I have come to realize that we the people needed some type of reform in the health care system, insurance companies, drug companies and in some cases the Drs are out of control. I just wish there was a way to make the changes together, with great knowledge, fairness, honesty, and integrity. It isn't about what party you are with...I am learning I can't put myself in a box...I have a little of every party line in me? But, I appreciate you putting your story out there. Glad you had a great day. Soryy I was long winded....

tumbleweedgirl said...

thank you for saying that.

i agree. we are in the same boat. i had to quit my job suddenly to care for lia. without medicaid we WOULD have lost everything. she is a 10million dollar plus baby! and worth it, but i am so thankful for medicaid, disability, and the fact that someday she could have real insurance.

thank you for saying that.

Lauren said...

Bravo on your post! I think you spoke very well.

Also, LOVE your hair!

Tiny's Tribe said...

When Sami was 2 and I was pregnant with Garrett, my employer changed their benefits package. I could still get insurance but they no longer covered dependents. Which mean Sami was losing her health insurance. Putting her on my husband's was not an option. We were screwed. We made too much for her to quantify for medicaid; yet with all her medical conditions we were turned down by more insurance companies that I care to think about. We had no choice but to put her on COBRA and pay for it out of pocket. She was on that for 18 months till the coverage ran out. thankfully my husband got another job and they agreed to start the insurance right away because of our situation. Thankfully she never had a lapse in coverage but I always worry about the day she (we) lose our health insurance. Now that is something I (or other EB families) don't need to worry about anymore.

Amy Dalon said...

You should check out this article:

One of our pastors at church posted it today and I thought it was perfect. I don't know how I feel about the whole healthcare thing- some of it make sense, and some of it seems flat out wrong. But regardless of how I feel, as a Christian, there is a proper way to handle it.

And, your haircut is super cute:).

Janet said...

I actually agree with you. We need something. My future son-in-law is diabetic and does not have health insurance. He and my daughter are holding their breath, hoping nothing will happen to him before her insurance kicks in (30 days waiting period because of a new job) and their getting married (15 days after that). Something is needed to protect people like him, who lost his job because of the economy and is unable to find another one, thus not having healthcare. Some sort of healthcare reform IS necessary and it has to start somewhere!

Paige said...

I respect you even more for what you wrote but I wish you didn't feel like you would be criticized for having an opinion.

I share the same views as you. I have always been able to get insurance through my employer but my needs changed a few months ago.

I was admitted to the ICU with a life-threatening condition and, upon discharge, put on nine weeks of disability by my physician when complications set in. THE DAY I went back to work, I was laid-off.

Oh, and did I mention that I worked for the 2nd largest insurance company in the world?

I am a single mom with a disabled child, and still need follow-up care for my own condition. As you noted, Cobra is not a possibility at a cost of $800/month. So, right now, we are without medical coverage of any kind.

I feel like the poster child of health care reform. Your case and mine, and so many others, are the reasons we need this health care bill. Insurance companies do not always do what is right and have proven time and time again that they stand for profit over people.

Thank you for stating your opinion, Patrice.

Molly said...

High five woman! The hair looks great.

and I'm with you on the health care. My guy friend has sickle cell. He's had multiple hospitalizations, multiple surgeries and he's on meds. My other friend had cancer. My sister has arthritis. We needed this bill to pass so that we can be insured when we hti the work force. We're all college students now, so we could all get denied for coverage when we get jobs. Yikes.

The kerfluffle surrounding the bill makes me sad. People get so mean!

Unknown said...

Hey I love reading your blog and I especially love Jonah, I live in Canada so our healthcare is much different but it is amazing and my son was in the hospital for 4 months and many appointments and medication and it is amazing to not pay a penny! I feel very blessed for our healthcare and hope the states will soon follow in a similar direction :) god bless you all though and constant prayers for baby Jonah

Andrea McCollum

Stina said...

Hear Hear! I LOVE that you posted this and I hope it opens a lot of people's eyes to the reality of the health care situation in America. Also, YAY for 1) haircuts, 2) therapy and 3) eating out. This is one of the happiest posts I've ever read.

Shosh said...

thanks for this post! im not sure whether i like or dislike the bill but i totally hear your point and i think you are completely right! also your new haircut is hot :)

Gretchen said...

WOW! Bravo and too-chez (sp?) and all that good stuff. I know you are tired lots and so you taking the time to so eloquently put this whole thing was really appreciated by me (and many others as I see here).

Me, as a single mom with a child with many medical needs, I give up 2/3rds of my paycheck from being a teacher, to cover all of his treatments, therapies, equipment, specialists, and that is with insurance. I'll admit, I have not gotten into the details but I agree that something had to be done and that many of us work and take care of kids with many special needs.

BTW, Your hair looks awesome!

Thanks for being you!

Bridgesfam said...

Well said. I'm hearing so many negative statements being made about the reform that are not necessarily based in truth, only speculation. And I'm getting tired of it. You're right about the fact that some people honestly need government assistant who are not lazy at all. I usually stay away from politics because one side generally refuses to see the other. Which is so frustrating. That's why my views stay somewhere in the middle. Thanks for sharing your side of this issue.

Kelsey said...

Love the hair!
Love the post!

Laura A said...

First - LOVE the new do! I got my hair done today, too. It sounds so superficial, but I tell people "If my hair ain't happy, I ain't happy!"

Anyway - I totally agree with you on all the hatefulness. It isn't going to change the issues, nor will it repeal the bill. I think that some sort of reform is necessary - for families like yours, and for some other families I know that are in similar situations. The process is broken - and no amount of capitalism or shouting about lazy people is going to fix that. I do have to say I'm a little iffy about so much government involvement, though. Not hatin' - just sayin'!

Honestly, I'm not sure how the economics of this bill really works out, or if it's a big a mess as all the haters say. I actually tried to read the bill today (all 2,409 pages of it!) and would you believe it's hard to follow? :)

My main concern with this bill is that it is sneaking in some very anti-life provisions (both for the unborn and the elderly.) All I know to do about this is pray that God will change the hearts of those in our government who don't value the sanctity of life.

This was a great post, Patrice - and hopefully you won't get any negative emails from it!

Hope sweet Jonah had a good day!

Love from TX!

Lauren said...

Cute cute haircut. Love it!

And thank you posting this--you are brave, but you are speaking words that people need to hear. The extremist views and the words I have heard people say (and type) that are filled with such venom and hate--it's just scary. You know I agree with the need for a better insurance system, and I think your and Jonah's story is easier for some people to hear and comprehend, rather than lumping everyone who would benefit from it in the "lazy people mooching off the government" category. I've met many hard-working parents who are caught in the middle, just trying to do the best for their kids, but can't get the necessary care for themselves or their families because of red-tape and hoops they have to jump through. For those of us who know the names, the faces of the people who need this reform--it's different.

jenlar3 said...

I agree some kind of health reform is needed, but not This bill, pushed in This way. Over 70% of Americans do not want this bill/this way, but Congress members used all kinds of inappropriate tactics. What happened to representing the people? And how in the world do Student Loans figure into a health reform bill? I was finally able to get a copy of the bill and plan to read it. Wondering how many members of Congress have actually done that?

And insurance is no guarantee of anything. Like my dad said, "I lost two wives and they both had health insurance."

Patrice, your hair cut is adorable! Glad you were able to have a great day!

m said...

I've been following your blog since Jonah was born. You have a beautiful son! I love all the pictures of him - keep 'em coming. :)

I try to steer clear of a lot of politics because of all the hate that goes on. I totally agree with your statement, " I think Jesus calls us to take care of the sick, the hurting, and the poor. I think he calls for us to pray for our government and our leaders, whether we fully agree with them or not." That's exactly how I feel - thanks for putting it into words! I'm glad you could provide a first-hand perspective on why doing something about this problem was necessary. Maybe the bill will create other issues, too, but I hope it solves many more. No matter what happens, I pray that God will continue to provide for you and your family, along with everyone else that needs it.

KAL071203 said...

I couldn't agree with you more. I am so tired of the extremes from both sides, if everyone would just shut-up and listen to what others had to say we could have universal health care that was positive and helpful to most people, as there will always be haters and those who need a reason to complain. Also your hair looks great:)

Megan said...

The fact is that government is not able to perform as well as a private company. Take it from someone who works in the government arena. I know firsthand.

Basically, for me, it boils down to the fact that I would happily (and I DO pay some taxes happily, others not so much) give money and pay taxes to help people like Jonah, like my best friends sister who has rheumatoid arthritis and can sometimes barely move. But, have you heard of a few bad apples spoil it for the bunch?

Government is wasting tons and tons of money on our welfare program that produces NO results. Welfare was instated to help families get back on their feet. Not for people to live on for an extended period of time.

And healthcare is going to be the same way. Its going to be a money pit. And while maybe one day, when we are less in debt and our country is on more solid ground, we could have a nationalized healthcare system...maybe... but unfortunately, we are not there.

Before this extreme reaction was taken, government should have worked with insurance companies to give them tax incentives to lower costs and create programs for families like yours, and for the old, sick and poor.

Another way to help struggling families is to have a charity that will help pay bills. Personally, I am way more willing to give my money to a charity that directly works with the families, then give it to the government. Period. And I know many people that feel the same way.

To make this extreme step in our government was not the way to go. And I believe that people in support of this healthcare reform might just regret it.

I fear for us as a nation. I also fear for you. Right now, you are so blessed because Jonah has access to programs that he might not have had if you didn't have Medicaid. But remember that the taxes that we are going to pay for this "free healthcare" is going to come out of Matt's paycheck - as well as mine, or any other taxpayer - the main source of income in your home. I wonder if families like yours will be able to survive if another 30% is taken out of Matt's paycheck. I wonder how many homes will be lost then...

It is a very scary thing.

KristiBP said...

Your opinions are EXACTLY what I've been so upset about over the last few days. It's the hate, the lies, the fear tactics, preying on the ignorance of people (most of us, admittedly) who don't know the facts but unfortunately there are so many who believe WHATEVER is said regardless of whether it is true. I agree completely that we are called to love others and it really DOES NOT MATTER that "lazy" people might take advantage of the system. Even with that, it is on me to do what is right regardless. I WILL NOT HAVE TO ANSWER FOR THEIR FAULTS, only my own. I want everyone to have the opportunity to have affordable health care. It's that simple. Just because I have it by the good fortune of having a job in a state-supported public school system does not mean I DESERVE it more than someone who does not. Bottom line - I admire you for making this statement, because your situation is real instead of the doomsday talk we're hearing!

Nancy said...

GREAT post! I totally agree! I'm so tired of hearing people talk about (both sides) in person, on Facebook, etc. BTW, cute hair!

Deciduous Heather said...

You showed me two new things about you today...
1. You are 10x braver than I knew you already were, lol, does that make sense? This is SUCH a POLAR issue...especially being in Pharmacy school and being directly involved in healthcare...most of my class is adamently AGAINST it and very vocally so...I tend to keep to myself because I am in the minority and it seems so argumentative, and I am just NOT a confrontational kinda gal, it makes me chest hurt too! It has made me want to slam my head against a wall and today I actually said "If I hear one more negative thing about that bill..." . Thank you for so candidly putting words to my feelings as to why I support health care reform. Do I think the bill is perfect? No. Do I think it is right that 30 million people in the US are un-insured? NO. My mother has several chronic conditions and needs several expensive meds that she is GOING WITHOUT and will likely die in her 50s because she is sick and does not have health insurance. It is a broken system, and I am so glad some kind of reform is coming. Thank you for sharing your perspective and for writing this.

And before I forget...the other thing you showed me today...
2. Not only are you brave to the 100th degree, you are also one sexy momma! Oooh la la at your new hair style. I AM hatin'. LOL
(HUGS) Heather

Sewconsult said...

Agree on so many points. I HATE when news media & political radicals (left & right) just inflame, agitate & take things out of context.

Cute haircut.
Beckie in Brentwood, TN

amanda said...


i liked your post, i'm in agreement with you. i live in canada and i love our healthcare system, it's not perfect but i do feel it's the way it should be.

has anyone ever told you that you look just like the woman who was second (i think) in the last season of america's next top model (the petite girls one)? the whole time i watched it i knew she reminded me of someone and then i finally figured it out :)


Mindy said...

I love your new do! I totally agree. People don't realize how scary the whole health insurance thing is until you've been on the side of the fence you're on. I've been there. All the "against" people make the "for" people afraid to speak. We do have health insurance and still get medicaid for the 4 kids. I don't know what we'd do if we didn't. All I can think is about all the people who have NO insurance AT All. I think in the end this will be a good thing but change is hard for people. Good post!

Jess and Krissy said...

Right on, sweetie. Thanks for putting yourself out there!

Kat and Crew said...

Couldn't agree with you more!! So many are scared they are letting their fear make them crazy. I think they should READ the bill and they may feel better. Praying that this change helps your family and many others.
LOVE your hair do and sassy look!

Unknown said...

Darling new "do" on the hair!!

And . . . it's your blog and you are quite eloquent in your writings. Please keep "publishing" what's on your heart, in your way! You do it so well!

Lovingly, The Fullhousemama

Barbara said...

I get it! AJ's insurance decided this past week that he can do fine on 40 rolls of bandages per month (that would last no more than three days) We will appeal but where is the logic and compassion. He has RDEB and needs the bandages to live. This isn't a cosmetic decision. Bring on the insurance reform!

Sarah said...

I LOVE this post. I have been beyond frustrated with people's hateful comments about health care reform- especially from those who follow Christ. There are too many people choosing between feeding their family and receiving medical care. And since my husband is self-employed and I have a pre-existing condition it hits close to home. We had to create a business just so I would not lose coverage. Our country needed a more humane way of treating people who need medical care.

Also, I've been following your blog for awhile now (but I'm never any good at commenting on blogs) and LOVE Jonah. He is precious. I grew up in Winston and my dad has been working at Wake Forest since I was 3 years old. Needless to say, my blood runs black and gold (even though I am always left heartbroken as a fan). We feel that one of the most important values that we can pass onto our kids is a love for the Demon Deacons. :)

*Mirage* said...

That's precisely why I'm against this bill- I'm totally in favor of FIXING the healthcare system! The bill however is alot of other things under the guise of a healthcare fix. It's got more holes than swiss cheese and I really feel it's going to screw everything up worse in the long run. I want a REAL fix, a fix that doesn't violate our constitutional rights, and especially a fix that will make sure people like sweet Jonah are helped. I want a fix that won't wind up eventually running the entire country into the ground. Asking for miracles? Maybe I am asking for miracles. But I believe in a God who is in the business of both miracles and freedom. :) So I'm holding out hope for a real, longterm fix for little Jonah and the rest of us.

Nene said...

Love the smokin' hot new look! Thanks for your take on healthcare, I always love coming to your blog for your candid comments and cute, cute boy!

ashley said...

hooray! thank you so much for speaking out about such an important issue. people need to get over the politics behind all of this and just focus on the good that needs to happen for everyone, and specificially families like yours! personal stories help everyone relate and reform is DEFINITELY needed.
thanks again!

*Mirage* said...

P.S. Just so you don't think that I'm some rich person in my ivory tower not knowing what it's like... I just wanted to tell you that my mom is dying of breast cancer. She was denied all help and finally got on Medicaid but they cut her off pretty fast when they found out she didn't do chemo and radiation immediately and was looking into different treatments. We grew up dirt poor and never had insurance. My mom was sick in bed with colon cancer and colitis (Chrone's Disease) for most of my childhood. My sister had Leukemia. I had brain cancer. Now my mom has been fighting the breast cancer for going on 9 years. With no insurance or help of any kind.
The way this bill is written, my mom will not get real help. She will supposedly get a limited dollar amount per year that will go toward pain medication to make her more comfortable as she dies. She will not get treatments. She will be on her own again when her yearly amount is used up. So I just want you to know that I really do understand. And that's why I am really against this bill. The language of it allows for the rationing of medical help from the elderly and terminally ill, like my mom. I want healthcare reform! But I want it done right.
I just wanted to let you know about my mom so you didn't think I don't know what it's like, because I do.

KG06 said...

I have to be completely honest, I was feeling against healthcare reform and felt that the government was taking over more control of our lives. However, after reading your post it made me realize how selfish my thinking was. I have great healthcare coverage, but never really stopped to think about what it's like for those that don't (and don't abuse the system) or those that are faced with circumstances they can't control. Thank you for sharing, Patrice! Your words have opened my eyes and heart to a new reality.

Unknown said...

Patrice, Thank you so much for articulating what I haven't been able to. We too are a family with health care needs. My husband, Phil, has cancer. Thankfully we have excellent healthcare through his work, but if he were to lose his job we would never get insurance again because of pre-existing conditions.

I am so thankful this passed. Why should it be so hard to admit this? You cannotbelievethe attack I've come under for voicing my own families situation and the need for healthcare reform. People think I am crazy. I am too, so tired, of the hatemongers chewing everyone out and spitting them out.

What bothers me most of all is that so many of these people shouting at about how horrible this all is call themselves Christian.

Thank you again.

Unknown said...

I forgot to tell you that you're new hair looks fabulous! You are a fashionista :)

Janelle said...

That was awesome! Thank you! I wish that everyone could learn the kind of compassion you speak of.

Melissa said...

Patrice, you make me want a haircut and cute earrings! You look so sassy and beautiful!

I admire your courage in writing this post. I, too, have had to go down the Medicaid road a time or two (and have been in the workforce either full time or part time continuously since 1984, so I'm no freeloader), my youngest child is receiving WIC, and I truly hate being on the receiving end of government assistance. I am optimistic enough to believe that our financial situation will change, but in the meantime, I am thankful that there is assistance of some form for those who need it. But I don't feel guilty about using "someone's" tax dollars, because they are my tax dollars, too, since I am still working, paying taxes (as is my husband) yet we STILL qualify for financial help. Some people just need it. Our economy is difficult and my family has suffered because of it. Yet I cringe at the thought of the United States government being involved in health insurance; I wish it could be individual states providing health care options. And insurance companies really do need to be reined in. I really like the way Risa worded her offerings on what needs to be done to reform the insurance industry.

Anonymous said...

First off, you look hot.

Second, Word Patrice, WORD.

Third, I'm a total lurker coming out of lurkerdom.

Laura said...

Very well said!!! I have never commented your blog before, a friend of mine had sent you blog link to me not very long after your son was born. I just came across (and added to follow you) about a week ago. My youngest son has DD-EB, no where near what your Jonah goes through, but I also had to quit my job to stay home and care for him. I wish people who think families on government assisted insurance are lazy could just think...we can not just put our children into daycare. There are things with the health care bill I do not care for, but I think it will really be a great thing for EB children like ours and all the others out there!!!

The Bad Witch said...

Your new "do" looks AWESOME on you!
May God continue to bless you, Matt and that beautiful little boy of yours.

Patty said...

No hatin...just had to tell you your haircut looks FABULOUS!!!!!!! Glad you got a day out...that alone is therapy!!!

Patty from TX

Wanda Wilkinson said...


I am so thankful that you posted the real reason we need health care reform..the number of people that truly deserve help totally out weigh the users..Like you said I am not happy about how the went about getting it passed, but God is in control.

You new haircut is great...as always you are a beautiful person (inside & out). Glad to hear you & Matt got out for a little while.

Love & prayers.. kisses to Jonah

Emelie said...

Hi Patrice!

In sweden we do pay high taxes BUT everthing is for free. All medicin, bandage and doctors visit. Everyone should have the same help, everyone should have healthcare!

Debby Richey said...

Thank you!! You, and families like you are why I have supported healthcare reform. I truly believe that if most who are against it had to live a day in your shoes, their choice would change. This isn't about being a Republican or a Democrat, it is about being a compassionate human being.
Don't ever be afraid to stand behind your convictions. I for one am proud of you!!!

stiner0305 said...

love the new hair cut!!!!
yes i like certain parts of the new health care bill, but also don't like it either. it makes me mad when someone chooses not to get a job cuz they figured out how to live off the system, which makes me mad, those people can be working and using the system, where we, as a two income family has to use medicade for our kids, cuz neither of our jobs offer health care and if they did it would be thru the roof and then we would be down to a one income family.

Millicent said...

First off--Love the hair!!!
Second--thanks for this post. I don't like so much about the healthcare bill, but I understand how it will help so many in your position. I just wish it could have been done without adding so many of the negative aspects :(

Jessica K. said...

The lats couple of days I have gotten into arguments with ppl on facebook bc of this bill. I live in Germany and here you HAVE to have health insurance and I am all pro! I think it is great. It saves so many ppl from dept and it actually is beneficial. Y'alls bill isnt perfect, it's far from that but I am sure the next years will bring more change and they might adjut it a little. Here you have a family insurance and parts of it the employee pays. Almost everything is covered. Having a baby: free, need an operation on your arm: free, need counceling: free. I think that is great. My mom got very ill 3 years ago and had to go to a psychriatric clinic for over half a year. COVERED!! I am so thankful for our health insurance bc it keeps my parents from going into dept and it helps improve our lives. I know there are ppl that are lazy, we have many here but my parnets would be the last ppl to complain bc their insurance has saved our lives in many ways! Thank you for posting this, I hope there will be more open minded people soon and that everyone will at least give it a chance. Not every law restricts your rights and this one will for sure improve the lives of many!

Nora Lee said...

Patrice, thank you! Beautifully stated.

Unknown said...

Dang girl, me encanta tu estilo de pelo!!! Sad to say that this is now the extent of my Spanish. And I met someone the other day for the 1st time and the one thing we had in common is that we read your blog! Small world. Miss you. hopefully when things slow down Drea and I can both come for a visit.

And I think you are spot on with your post! Keep it up.

Charisa said...

You look great! Way to go for taking some time for yourself!

Kristen said...

Well said. It's something that really only you (or someone in your situation) can say so powerfully. I'm blessed beyond belief to have decent health coverage through my employer, but my heart aches for those who aren't so fortunate. Thank you for sharing this point so eloquently.

kedw said...

you look awesome!! I hope it helps your spirits!
on the health care- AMEN SISTER!!!!
i feel that people that are really against it have never struggled as some of us have. They dont get it. I am so glad that you dont have the extra stress of Jonah's med bills on top of everything else!

Tina said...

Patrice -

I totally agree with you 100%. Very well said. I may link to this post from my blog as well. I hope this bill is able to help families that are in your situation. No one should have to worry about how they are going to be able to afford decent healthcare.

Awesome post! Thanks for sharing!


Toni :O) said...

LOVE the hair...you look FAB! I agree with you on your post...it scares me but at the same time, I distinctly remember my husband having NO insurance because we could only afford insurance on myself and my son. It was an incredibly DIFFICULT and stressful time to say the least..it was awful. Here we are the most powerful and wealthy country in the world and so many of our citizens go without health insurance...it's just wrong, so very, very wrong. Here's hoping and praying this change will do really good things...especially for those who so desperately need it.

Lucky said...

Wow. Thank you for that. I am so tired of hearing the negativity. People need to take a step back and see the big picture...EVERYONE deserves care...

Go on with your bad self.

Anonymous said...

I've made this point to people before - "What about the parents of chronically ill children who are going bankrupt because of medical bills?" And an answer from one special needs parent - "Well, we're doing it just fine without government assistance, they should figure out a way." Seriously. The old "If I don't need it, you can't have it" argument. I've bowed out of many an argument on healthcare because my blood pressure just can't take it. My own mother would be destitute (and homeless, except we wouldn't let that happen) because of medical bills if it wasn't for government assistance. It's pure greed that have people up in arms, scared that they're going to have to pay more - you know what? I'll gladly pay a little more if it helps someone who really needs it.

Okay, now on a slightly creepy, stalkerish note - I had a dream last night that I babysat for Jonah. Me, my hubby, and my 5-year-old. But don't blame me, I'm pregnant so I can't be held responsible for my dreams :)

Mrs.Joe said...

I loved every bit of this post! What a great message AND haircut!

Cyndi said...

I agree, and I LOVE your hair!

M J said...


I couldn't agree with you more about the health care issue! I worked at a small business for almost 2 years that didn't offer health insurance, and it just wasn't possible for me to afford it on my income. While some people do abuse the system, I really do believe that it's far fewer than the fear mongerers would have you believe. For the most part, it's honest hard working people who just can't afford health insurance.

Crystal said...

Patrice, I support healthcare reform, too. But not THIS healthcare reform. Our people overwhelmingly did NOT support this bill and our house voted it through anyway. 100% of the votes came from dems, while not 100% of the "no" votes came from repubs. I encourage anyone who likes the idea of government healthcare (what this bill WILL undoubtedly lead to), to look at the healthcare in other countries. In Canada, I believe, the average time from the diagnosis of cancer to treatment is a year, if I am remembering correctly. A year of cancer growing and festering in your body because of the red tap you have to cross to get necessary tests and then coverage for certain treatments. This stem cell treatment this is being tried, good luck qualifying for those things if we end up with a government run healtcare. Does there need to be reform, sure. But I think you are seeing the amount of hate you are seeing because people are frusterated and downright pissed that after such overwhelming NON-support of this issue, it was shoved down our throats anyway. Say goodbye to healthcare as we know it, and not just the things we don't like.

jenn said...

very well said and never looked it at that way...LOVE the new haircut

Christine said...

You look fabulous with your new "do"! I've been following your blog since Jonah was born, and I've only made 1 or 2 small comments since then.

Bravo for your post!!! I just hate reading and watching the news these days because of all the hate and name calling.

Thank you for showing us a side of this story that the haters of this bill definitely do not want to hear. They need to hear your story!!!! I wish it would make them stop and think.

Thank you Patrice!!

Ellen said...

I love your hair! You look great!!

Amen to your post on healthcare! Jonah and other sick kids need something to protect them. My family has no health coverage! I have a heart valve that needs to be repaired or replaced and I have a spot on my stomach that I hope isn't skin cancer because I don't have health insurance and my hubby works and we pay our own way. But I can't afford cancer or heart surgery on my own! The hate over this health care bill is horrble, I certainly agree with you on that! You go girl!

COME ON BABY said...

I just LOVE you!!! I dont know you but I love you and think the world of you.
Your hair is smoken' hot.

Lisa said...


Tonia said...

Thank you for your post!! I agree!

And of course your hair is adorable!! Cute cute!!

There's No Place Like Memphis Mama said...

Love your hair girl! While I don't agree with this bill and all it's fine print...I completely agree that all people should have equal access to affordable healthcare. I agree that the absolute comments that are tossed about are ridiculous. This is an issue FULL of gray areas. No government program is ever going to be perfect and people shouldn't expect them to be. I'm less worried about my tax money and more worried about the HMO like qualities of the plan. I don't think anyone (private ins. or govt. ins. alike) should tell a person what doctor they HAVE to see. But I also hate that people wind up in the ER who don't need to be there just b/c they can't get care any other way. Speaking as a person who works in healthcare/research (I work at Vanderbilt and they support this bill) I am glad that this bill will help people like your family who so desperately need care for your child. I hope they tweak some of the finer points along the way so this bill is successful. Always praying for your family!

Lindsey Sowers said...

Great post! I will admit that I have been one of those people that have said some very bitter things about this bill, but I pray that I am wrong and that my fears of the future of our nation are wrong too. I completely agree that our country's leaders always need our prayers and our RESPECT. I sure wouldn't want their job.

Love the sassy picture...you are so ready for the catwalk.


Anonymous said...

I love it when people bring up how long Canadians have to wait for care - how long do they think uninsured/underinsured Americans are waiting for their care?

Kristi said...

This is my first time to comment, but I read every post. Thank you for your post. I think it's something that a lot of people need to think about. Hate has become more popular than logic, and that's sad.
Your story is the story that more people need to hear.
Thanks again.

MalindaS said...

You look awesome! Hope you are feeling like a hot momma!! Anyway...totally agree with your whole post! We need a change plain and simple..I live in MA where bill was modeled.... there wasn't the hate like this when that bill passed. All people need access to quality care.

Janel said...

I have EB - I hate this bill. To those commenters that assume that people against this health care bill aren't sick, or don't understand what its like to have a chronic illness - you couldn't be more wrong!

My husband makes a little over minimum wage working a very demanding phyical labor job to proved me with health insurance. Under this bill his benefits are considered "cadillac" and subject to a 40% tax of the value of his plan. That acutal dollar amount is more than he makes.

To add insult to injury - the Student Loan provision in this bill adds about $1300 a YEAR to his student loan payments. So now we are further in the hole.

"Cadillac" plans are not only owned by CEO's and rich people - its hardworking individuals - half a million alone that work at the company my husband does.

Stop assuming that those of us against this bill must be rich and healthy because we "don't get it". I get it - trust me, I get it! I've been in the hospital 3 times in the last 12 months. My husband has been in the hospital once and my daughter just got over pnemonia.

Will this country already facing a doctor and a nurse shortage, I fear that the wait times to get in to see a medical professional is going to create more medical problems. I already have problems finding doctors willing to treat me because of my EB. I fear that its only going to get worse - for everyone regardless of your insurance.

I am 100% in favor of healthcare reform - I am very against THIS bill and the hidden BS that is in it. I am also against the fact that everyone thinks this healthcare is free - electing to go with the government sponsored healthcare does not mean its free!

I wasn't even going to comment - but I read another comment where it was assumed that those against it "don't get what its like to need insurance". 90% of the financial decisions that I make take healthcare and insurance into account. I continued to work to the point that I almost killed myself to maintain my much needed health insurance. I turned down jobs because of poor benefits. My husband specifically went after his job because of the benefits. My life revolves around benefits - trust me - I GET IT - probably more than most.

Deen Family said...

Crystal -

The people DID support healthcare reform. We voted for the people who approved the bill. If the people didn't want this reform, we wouldn't have voted (overwhelmingly) for congressmen and senators who support the bill. Also, studies/polls show that citizens of Canada and Germany like their healthcare, but it doesn't matter anyway since we are SO very far away from a total government run healthcare system. Please don't believe the scary stuff you hear on tv.

Read the bill, not the lies on tv.

- Emily

Jen said...

Thank you so much for your perspective on this. I get so frustrated when people make blanket statements about those who need government assistance. In reality, most of us get more assistance than we realize through public schools, libraries, the fire department etc. Like you, I never dreamed we would need goverment help until my second pregnancy resulted in triplets. Our family doubled, my girls were born 8 weeks early, and I had to leave my job. Thankfully through wic we got help with formula. We also get early intervention services through the state. We were lucky to have good insurance to cover our astronomical medical bills, but not everyone does. So thank you again and I completely agree.

Ronda said...

What a great post! I completely agree, the hate makes me sick too. Makes me sad and worried to raise my kids where hate is so fiercely strong. After the bill passed, I saw a lot of hateful things posted on Facebook friends and relatives that really hurt me. I refrained from responding. But I'd love to somehow post your post about the hate. It needs to stop. We can disagree as Americans without hate. Or at least we should be able too.

Bangs said...

I am an outsider but have family in the US and know your current system and this Bill very well. I completely agree with you Patrice - there needs to be reform. For all the reasons you mentioned. While the Canadian system is not perfect, it works when it needs to. However, the Bill that was passed in the US does not even come close to bringing your system in line with ours. Comparisons just seem silly. For good and for bad - it is not the same. I support reform. I boggles my mind to think that 30 million people in one of the most developed nations in the world do not have access to healthcare. This Bill is stepping stone and a starting point. It is not the end. The hate and propaganda drive me nuts too. I really appreciated hearing your side.

A comment to Crystal - I am Canadian and your stats are wrong and an gross generalization. Different cancers are diagnosed and treated differently and at differnt rates. Likewise, there is a rural versus urban factor in accessing treatment (as there is in the US). And to Lisa - very interesting point about how long non-insured people wait.

Melissa said...

Hi! I just wanted to say that I am with you, without things like medicaid I dont know how hard-working people who cant afford health care coverage would survive (this includes myself). BUT I am against the bill because I worry about there not being enough private and governmental money to cover research and state of the art machinery. Countries with this type of medical system come to the US to be treated, because we have the best of the best. We have a specialist for every aliment under the sun...I really worry that when the government steps in and starts paying doctors..all of that will go away. Canada cant afford the huge MRI machines because the gov. provides them with what is necessary and nothing else. When this bill went through I immediately worried about diseases like EB no longer having funding...this could be bc I took a class in college on Socialized Medicine...anyways..just something to think about...

Trwaldo1 said...

Nicely put, not all Christians are against the "government" and the changes that are happening. I friends and especially my mom who had a series of strokes 8 years ago that this bill will help. You are a joy and thank you for being so real!

Just Diane said...

Love your new do.... and your sassy look. You are tempting me to cut my hair. I have been tossing the idea around for a while... stop tempting me, Patrice! I want to keep my long hair!!! lol

As for healthcare reform, I think that I am on the fence. I think when the dust settles and more details emerge about how exactly things will happen, people will calm down. Change is hard. Even if the reform isn't ideal, people will eventually get used to it.

My husband served our great country for nearly 22 years. He (and I) love tricare... although it is not a perfect insurance, we really felt a sting when we first thought that tricare may not be an option for us. It has come to light that it will in fact. not change.

I am anxious to see how this will all play out. I hope that it is much better than people are expecting. That's all I can do right?

MITZI said...

Love the new haircut! You are such a beautiful woman.

My attitude about the health care bill? I don't care. I'm so confused about it I don't want to think about it. Whatever happens, happens.

Ijust keep my eyes focused on God on His promises or else I will go crazy with all this government stuff.

At least you have an educated opinion. I just want to stick my head in the sand. :)

megadena said...

Like others have said, I have never commented before, and all I can say is AMEN! and you look amazing. You go girl!

Tricia said...

Glad you were able to get out. The hair looks great.

About the healthcare, I like how you addressed not the actual reform taking place, but people's attitudes about it. The hate will get us in a world of hurt as a country.

I know without Medicaid, my children would not have coverage. I know the blessing that has been in our lives. I also know the difficulties we face getting them care sometimes. I remember the times they went without medical care because I couldn't afford it. I don't think this plan will be what the people on either end hope for or fear. I think it will fall somewhere in the middle.

In the end, no matter how this all plays out, God is still on the throne and was not surprised by the outcome. That is really the only important thing to remember.

Suesan said...

A-M-E-N! I too am sick of the hate! It keeps me off facebook a lot because of so much hate mongering!

Krystal said...

Love the 'do!

Praying for you with all you do for Jonah, praying for Matt similarly, and praying for Jonah!

Y Mama said...

LOVE the hair
LOVE the post
I don't know what the answer is...However,
You could sub out many diseases for EB in this post. In my families case, it happens to be cancer. Is it really fair to "loose" your job due to your cancer and once in remission (!!!!) try to find another one but then NO ONE will cover you thanks to preexisiting conditions. And trying to pay for COBRA (which doesn't cover every dollar) will bankrupt you in itself! Or like Jonah a child with pre existing conditions!
Good Bye pre exisiting conditions, HELLO coverage (enough so I don't loose my house)

Beth said...

Whoa! Hot mama! Love the new look!

You are an amazing mom and your point was well put. I certainly understand what you were trying to get across and it breaks my heart that your family is even in this situation. You are the exact reason that this bill was created and I'm glad to see that it will be worth it in the end if it helps babies such as sweet Jonut.

Island Jack's Travel said...

Great Haircut! It does look sassy! I appreciate your honesty referring to the Health Care Bill. I believe that everyone is FOR health care reform. The only thing that people didn't like was all the pork that was shoved into the bill. If it had been a cleaner bill with no "special benefits" for certain states/groups that excluded everyone else AND if abortion federal funding was completely taken out then everyone would have been able to vote a resounding YES with no problem. My big question is why do they want to fund abortions but we still have to pay for birth control?!?!?

I'll never understand those politicians.

Praying, S. said...

I have read your blog since Jonah was born. I am a lurker. :) I respectfully disagree with your post, but admire that you posted it. It spoke to me alot, as we are having trouble with some family members and hurt feelings. I like how you said at the end about nothing else matters but love. I know your post was about health care, but the grace and loved you showed while voicing your feelings spoke to me. Thank you.

kg said...

yes! Thank you for saying it!
I don't understand the hatefulness and the lies, often from people who profess to be "christian". It is ugly and doesn't speak well for us as human beings.
I wish that we could show the faces of those that HCR would help.

asplashofsunshine said...

OHHHHHHH MY GOODNESS, I am speechless... or maybe not! You are one amazing woman, mother, and person to walk this earth. I wholeheartedly agree with you. My children have their own set of medical issues as well, although nothing has turbulent as what your family is going through. Health care is absolutely essential. There are flaws in the bill, nothing is perfect. The hatred is old, it's sad, it's unproductive, it's plain ol' pathetic. We all deserve better!!!

I'd love to link this post to my facebook page. Mostly to show off Jonah, but also to make your points heard (ok, viewed) by even more people. I am not sure how you feel about that, so I probably won't do it. Maybe I'll just link from my blog if that's ok.

merlin said...

I wrote an earlier comment, hasn't been posted.
It is important for you,and all of us to be informed.
There is a loophole, identified today, that will leave behind children and families.
Hopefully a solution will be found, however I am a cynic, it is such a HUGE hole that I don't believe that not one lawmaker missed it. It is a profitable hole.
We need to stay vigilant and make sure reform is delivered. I hope you got my original comment.

Radar's Mom said...

Here here Patrice! I don't get the hate either. Even for those who disagree with healthcare reform for valid conservative reasons, I just don't get the hate. Government's role is something that constantly changes and always will. Some very well intentioned people think that role should be minimal - some very well intentioned people think that role should be broader. How does that lead to so much hate? I also believe in healthcare reform and I also hate the hate!!!

Unknown said...

I have a smile on my face and a happy heart as I write this response to your courageous post. There is no hate here, just a different perspective:
1.) I do not see hate -- where you see hate, I see passion. I respect those with passion for their lives, their family, and their country.
2.) I feel for your situation and others like yours. Unfortunately, history proves that you and Jonah will be far worse off in the future with the changes coming to health care. When you study the truth of the path we are on, there is no denying that this is the case.
3.) The love and charity you've been shown is the right way for us to take care of each other. I've personally donated to your family, though we've never met. It is right and moral and a true blessing to reach into my own pocket to give to someone in need. However, it would not be moral for me to forcibly take from another person and give from their pocekt to a person in need. At its root, this is theft.
4.) When you say you are thankful for the government, do you know where government money comes from? They took it from me, and you, and the rest of the 40%-ish of us who pay taxes. By taking this from what we rightfully earned, robbed us of the joy and pleasure of giving it to you freely. (And, as a person who has been greatly blessed by the generosity of strangers, you can not deny the giving spirit amongst us.) But, programs like this kill the golden goose -- as this system gets implemented, businesses will be destroyed by the cost burden, which will put even more people out of work, thereby shrinking the taxpaying base. When there are far fewer working people to pay taxes, how will these programs get funded?
5.) Government involvement is actually what drove up the costs of all the medical and theraputic services Jonah requires to make them so unaffordable in the first place, while simultaneously reducing Matt's paycheck and your ability to pay for them. After doing that, I am shocked that anyone can regard the programs you have to fight tooth-and-nail for as anything wonderful.

So, there, hopefully an un-hateful perspective. Those of us who have cried and prayed and agonized about this issue have great compassion for families like yours, and because of this great compassion, we know that you will not be served well by it.

Leslie Ruth Petree said...

{Long time reader, not a frequent commenter- friend of Paul & Lynn Barclay and Andrew Tucker was my YL leader :) }


I love this. I'm totally with you, the extreme {ignorant} statements that folks make are INSANE. Thank you for clearly, rationally and intentionally stating how this reform will help so many families who find themselves in healthcare situations they never dreamed of. Proud of you!

Leslie Ruth Petree said...

P.S. Loving the hair!

bluedotmom said...

Love the new do! It is amazing what a little pampering can do for a woman! You look fabulous!

I agree fully with your comments on the heatlhcare bill...I am happy it passed and hope that all of this dies down soon.

Thanks for your great post!

jardinera linda said...

En España TODOS tenemos derecho a recibir atención médica gratuita, también los extranjeros, sean legales o no. Me siento orgullosa de mi país por eso, pero no todos piensan como yo.

El sistema de Estados Unidos ha sido muy injusto hasta ahora. Me alegra que esto vaya a cambiar y gente de todas las clases sociales y con enfermedades crónicas pueda acceder a la atención médica.

Saludos desde Mallorca

Elizabeth Lucas Wilson said...

I've been reading your blog for over a year. I pray for Jonah and your family daily as I read. I've never, not once, commented.

THANK YOU. Thank you for positioning the true purpose of this Health Insurance overall so eloquently.

I'm so fortunate to be healthy, have a healthy child and I have adequate health insurance. But, I do understand and feel compassion for those that aren't so blessed. This new legislation is extremely powerful for those individuals and families.

You, whether you know it or not, have impacted the lives of many in such a positive way. This most recent post, is so extremely admirable. Thank you.

Speechless said...

Your hair looks good. I'm glad you got a chance to get out and get it done.

As far as health care, I agree that not everyone who needs it is lazy or unwilling to work. My husband & I both work, but our children are also on Medicaid. We had private insurance for years, but my daughter was denied when we moved to a new area due to a pre-existing condition, so we applied for medicaid in order to have health insurance for her. My husband & I pay for our own insurance. We have paid lots of money out of our pockets for years. And we don't make much. He is a pastor of a small church and he substitute teaches. I watch children out of my home (trust me, it's work).

I don't agree with the bill that has passed, and I do think we need to stand up for what we believe. I think there are better ways to deal with the health care issue.

The hate does need to stop. We need to learn to stand up for our beliefs without living in fear, anger and hate. But neither do we need to become complacent.

When I was pregnant with our last child, I had insurance, but it did not cover maternity. I applied for and received Medicaid. Due to a thyroid issue, my midwife sent me to a specialty clinic. I would sit in a room of at least 60 women and wait at least 4 hours for a five minute conversation with the doctor. There would be about two anglos, 3 African Americans and the rest Hispanic out of the entire group. Very few spoke English. They would lose my tests and I would have to repeat them. I saw a program that needed help. My husband is of hispanic origin, so please don't think I am being prejudice.

The children's medicaid program has been much better, but I still don't agree with socialistic medicine.

We also lived in a military town for years, and often the parents had to wait up to 6 months just to get tubes in their children's ears. Free medicine can be great, but it comes at a price.

I know what it's like not to be able to get insurance, or for it to be too expensive to afford, but I don't want to agree with a bill that doesn't fix the problem.


EMitchell said...

VERY well said! And the hair is darling. You look great.

onlyhuman13 said...

Amen, amen, amen!!!! Thank you so much for this post. I completely agree. There is so much hate going around, it's ridiculous! If people would just stop being so stand-offish and love one another, I don't think we'd be quite in this situation in the first place. So seriously... thank you.

Halfsicilian said...

Thanks for being brave and speaking about this issue compassionately. I completely agree with you. What a great post!

Your hair is adorable, btw.

Wendi Taylor said...

I absolutely agree that we need reform - real reform. That's why I don't support the current bill.

After careful reading of the actual law (not what other people are saying about it), I think the people who need help the most are still going to get left out in the cold. While the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, and the gov't goes on a massive campaign to tax us to death & tell us how wonderful it is.

Just as all of the perceptions about people who support the bill are not correct... neither are all of the perceptions about those of us who don't.

Crystal said...

Lisa, how long do uninsured wait for treatment? Good question. I do believe I stated I agreed that there needed to be reform. HOWEVER, I don't believe my quality of care should decline, so that others can be insured. That is not the answer. I read a blog recently of a woman who lost a pregnancy because she had a condition which required some certain treatment (totally forgetting what now) which was out of the norm and without this treatment, her body would attack the embryo and would self abort (I am totally wrecking this story, but I do have the general idea correct). She had to apply to a health panel before she could receive the treatment that she needed NOW for her baby to survive. She ended up losing the pregnancy. This was in Australia, maybe?? Govt. provided healthcare leads to a decline in care received and I don't care what report or stat you want to look at.

Since I was 16 I have had my own job and one of the things I looked for when chosing jobs was health insurance. I worked for McDonald's full time and was able to acquire health insurance. I worked for a supermarket part time (at another time) and was able to acquire health insurance. I worked for a computer support company at another time and was able to get health insurance. In deciding where I was going to work, making sure I would be provided with healthcare was always a factor. There are penty jobs out there that provide insurance and there are ways to privately obtain insurance. I dare say many of the uninsured could obtain health insurance if they wanted to step outside of their comfort zone and do something they didn't feel like doing (i.e. taking a second job, working at a fast food joint, or stockign shelves at wal-mart at night).

As far as affordability, I do have some issues with this area as well. While I do think that healthcare should be more affordable, I know there are a lot of people who would scoff at having to pay for their healthcare by themselves, but have no problem paying $500/mo or so on a vehicle payment. Or dropping $2,000 on a t.v. or some piece of technology. Who have no problem spending a couple of hundred a month on cell phones or cigarettes/alcohol. Some people don't want to priortize their healthcare because they think it should be provided for them and I completely DISAGREE. I don't think healthcare is a right simply because you are born into this universe.

Unknown said...

I love your hair! So cute and great for spring. I loved your post too, I agree with you completely. There is so much more to the issue.

SF Steph said...

(Previous lurker here) Thanks for the thoughtful post. I lived abroad for awhile in France, and I remember being very grateful for their medical care and wishing we could take care of ALL of ours here too. I'm hoping this bill is a step in that direction -- I would happily pay even *more* taxes for our schools, healthcare, police, firefighters... Thanks for putting yourself out there, and with a sassy new hairdo, no less ;-)

kimmie said...

thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you Patrice for being brave enough to write this post!!!

~Kimberly (Randolph) Waller

(ps.s - Jonah just gets cuter and cuter!)

TLCmiracles said...

BRAVO for this post Patrice. I could not have expressed my own thoughts and feelings on this better!

Bev said...

Thank you, thank you for writing this very well written, well thought out post. I am very much for healthcare reform and I wish I could verbalize my thoughts as well as you do. And Jonah is the such a happy, cute baby!

Cristi said...

My comment is: WHOA! YOU GOT 130 COMMENTS SO FAR! And your hair looks great!

Marie said...

I live in Australia where we have had healthcare as long as I can remember. Also lived in Sweden where they have it. I don't understand the resistance to healthcare in America!!! Our system works well here, and protects low income people.

I was horrified when I saw the movie John Q and learned that if you can't afford life saving surgery in America, you might not get it. And now to hear there are Americans who still support that idea??? If someone is "lazy" and not working, their kids deserve to die because they can't afford healthcare? Are you serious?

As for the fool who said government healthcare leads to a decline, we have excellent healthcare in Australia thankyou very much. So did Sweden. Don't talk about countries you don't even know.

Deen Family said...

Crystal -

Please don't make blanket statements about how easy it is to get health insurance. There are SO many jobs that need to be done in this country that don't offer insurance. Jobs that don't allow for people to get second jobs. Just think about that the next time you have a nice meal (who grew/picked those apples?), get served at a local restaraunt (not McDonalds). Take the silver spoon out of your mouth and please don't be ignorant.


Penny said...

My husband is retiring and if we were to keep the insurance, the premium jumps from about $300 a month to $1700 per month. That would be his entire retirement check. The ones that are jumping up and down must not give much thought to that or don't care. I'm not for this particular reform, but see where reform is needed. God bless, Patrice.

Rebecca said...

Well said. Very. well. said!

And I love the hair!

Diane said...

Amen, Patrice - thank you for your wonderfully brave post.

In 2004-2005 I went through breast cancer treatment. Through breastcancer.org I became part of a group of wonderful women from all over the world. A core group of us stayed together and are all still friends. One lives in Cananda, one Portugal, and one Australia and they all had some type of government healthcare. All of us, the ones from the US and other countries, were diagnosed at the same time, started chemo within the same month, went on to radiation and oral treatment. No one had to wait for treatment, no one was denied. The big difference was that we from the US were left with huge medical bills and the others had no expenses at all.

Everyone calm down and give this a chance. No bill is ever going to be perfect, but we have to start somewhere.

Also - love your hair!

Betsy said...

thank you for this post. this is the first thing written about the healthcare bill that i was able to read start to end.

JenandAsh said...

I haven't read any other replies to this, and I won't give my opinion on your post specifically, but...

...my husband and I are solidly middle class and have fantastic health insurance through his job (he's a teacher).

And we are also those people who would gladly watch our taxes go up if it meant that everyone had equal access to quality healthcare. Because we believe it is a RIGHT, not a privilege earned as a result of hard work or education or prayer. A right. Even for the "lazy" people.

Julia said...

Cute hair! You go girl!!! I totally support healthcare reform and I think it the blanket statements people are making are totally ridiculous.


JenandAsh said...

Island Jack,
Why do you think this bill provides federal funding for abortion?
Not only is the Hyde Amendment still intact, and renewed EVERY year, but the president just signed an executive order reiterating that federal funds can not be used.
It's also a misconception that it funded abortion in anyway. For those people who were buying insurance through the exchange, if they chose a plan that covered abortion, THEY had a surcharge they had to personally pay. If you chose a plan that didn't provide coverage for abortion, you didn't pay the surcharge. For those receiving Medicaid coverage, it's already against the law for federal funds to be used for abortion, and people now and in the future who receive Medicaid, will have to pay out of pocket for abortion.

Never, in either the House or the Senate version, were their federal funds provided for abortion. To say otherwise, is a complete misreading and bastardization of the bill.

People who use abortion as a reason not to vote for or support the bill were either not informed enough about the bill or using it as an excuse.

The Slacker Mom said...

Great post. Great hair.

Janel said...

I'm sorry - I have to speak up again - the only time I hear the word "lazy" uttered is when it comes out of the mouthes of those FOR this bill. Not everyone against this bill thinks that people are not deserving of healthcare or think that people who don't have insurance are lazy.

I also hear more anger and hate coming from the pro side as well.

Just because someone is against THIS BILL does not mean that they are against reform all together.

As for comparing the US insurance to other countries - its like comparing apples and oranges! On both sides - cut it out!

Even with the "public option" this insurance will not be free! There are still premiums that will have to be paid and co-pays and co-insurance that have to be paid and declinations for treatments.

Given the US's track record for running insurance plans(medicaid/medicare and va) - I have my doubts about this public option being anything other than a complete disaster, leaving those most in need in a worse position than they were in before.

Crystal said...

Emily, trust me, I have no silver spoon in my mouth. You know nothing about my family situation, so shame on you for making a blanket statement about my situation.

Silver spoon, huh? Let me tell you; right now my husband is working in another state so that we can have a job which provides health insurance/a wage we can live on. I am home with my children, 12 hours away and he travels from state to state, where ever this company happens to send him. Do I like it? HELL NO. But it is what my husband is doing to provide for our family.

There are options out there and yes, I will firmly believe that a large number of the uninsured could be insured if they were willing to step outside of their comfort zone.

Employers that don't offer insurance you say? Don't work for them then. And when they can't get reliable employees and turn a profit, they will catch on.

Furthermore, want to talk about some of these smaller companies that don't provide insurance? I bet you many of them would love to provide insurance but can't believe they are taxed to living death so that the government can use and waste their money. This is the liberal system and it is disgusting. It removes the incentive for hard working people to work harder, and it enables those who aren't willing to not have to be.

Rob and Nicole said...

I am not so much for the health care bill, but I understand families like yours in that situation and am thankful that the government is going to help you. I am an RN and I have seen how people are treated that do not have insurance and it is nasty! I cannot imagine having a child with a medical condition in the first place and then on top of that the financial impact of it. By the way you have a beautiful family and I will continue to keep you and Jonah in my prayers (daddy too)!

Katie said...

Are you guys seriously going to take a post that was written as a plea to stop the hate and turn it into another tactless debate? Kudos to those that could share your opposing viewpoints as mature adults--that's how we progress and understand ALL sides of an issue, but the rest of you--take the name calling and bickering somewhere else.

Harman said...

AMEN! Thank you for writing this. My husband and I have been talking a lot about this very topic. Love the post and your haircut!

Unknown said...

THANK YOU!! This is what I've been saying all along! If only the people who like to spout off could take the time to read something like this and understand the issue a little bit better!

Deanna said...

Well-said, Patrice. Stories like yours put a face to the problems healthcare reform is trying to correct. I, too, am exhausted by the hate that surrounds this issue. I can't help but keep thinking of the phrase, "whatever you have done for the least of my brothers, you have done for me." Where does that fit with the hateful criticisms?

Anonymous said...

No fiery darts from me! I have no educated myself much on the healthcare bill, but I have heard all of the drama surrounding it. It was nice to read your perspective on it. I don't often think of who the families are that are using government aid. There's always the stereotypes of people out there taking advantage of the situation who overshadow honest, good people like you. I really took your post to heart, and will promise you that I won't contribute to the hate. I still don't know how I feel about all of it, but hearing things from your perspective makes me have much more positive feelings in general about it. And you're right! God is in control. Nothing happens without His knowledge!


P.S. - Love the new do!

Denise said...

I am from Canada too -- while we don't pay for hospitalizations, we do still pay for eye exams, glasses, dental work, and prescriptions, ambulance trips etc.

My husband doesn't qualify for insurance as he is a trucker and the fellow he drives for only has one truck (if he had three or more rigs, he could offer employees insurance).

Consequently, I am supposed to be taking 3 prescriptions for diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, but I am not taking any of them because of the cost of the meds. Luckily the kids Grandma has been paying for their dental work as their father (my ex) signed in the divorce agreement that he would cover them for medical stuff but has not been doing so. So it is great that Granny "stepped up to the plate."

Anyway, although I believe your healthcare reform is necessary -- just wanted to say that universal care doesn't cure all the problems... but it certainly does help. Like the two C-Sections I had and I only paid about $10 for the hospitalization for feminine supplies. I'd shudder to think what the surgeries actually cost!

Blessings on you both and your little boy,

SproutACW said...

Love your haircut Patrice!
I totally agree with you on health care reform. Liz hasn't had good quality health insurance since college which is ridiculous b/c she's never had a 9-5 job. Affordable and decent health insurance shouldn't be contingent on working a cookie cutter job.
BTW, we enjoyed the birthday party. It was way more exciting that I ever would have expected. Way to celebrate!
- Anna Watkins

Janet said...

Anyone ever heard the statement "Government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have."?
I know you are not saying you agree with all in the bill, I am just saying it is a very slippery slop with this bill, as it is with most all things relating to politics!
I have a disabled child, and so I can totally get where you are coming from, but I also ditto the thoughts Megan Lauriana and Laura A. had to say, especially about this bill sneaking some very anti-life provisions in, and just how do some of these hidden things fit into a "health care" bill???

Janet said...

And, BTW, that should say "slope", not "slop", AND, I love your new hair style!

........ said...


Aaron, Lacey, Audrey and Elle said...

Cute haircut!

Anonymous said...

Love the haircut!
And....I cried when the the final tally was in for the healthcare vote! My son's life will be forever changed by this. Mine and my husbands too. He has hemophilia A severe. Our meds run close to $28,000.00 a month. Our max out of pocket is $10,000 and we have a 5 million lifetime cap. If my son were to stay on his dosage of factor, which he won't....he would no longer be covered on our insurance by the age of 14. We didn't qualify for social security for him but he is on my husbands insurance which is not as good as I would like but thank God we have it. Now we don't have to worry about him EVER capping out on our plan or his plan when he is older. He will never have to job hop because of capping out on his plan and if he ever has a lapse in coverage for whatever reason, which he can't to stay alive, his condition will never be pre-existing. I am so happy. I like you am sick of all the lies and hate going on. The majority of Americans have no idea what it is like to be in a situation like you or me or any parent who has any type of challenge with their child, whether it be cancer, autism, cerebal palsy, whatever the case is. I just wish people would do their research instead of relying on hearsay. There are things I do not agree with in the bill but this is s step in the right direction. People like us needed this so desperately. This has changed the future for so many people for the better. I thought of you too when the bill was signed. I thought you would be happy about it!
It was so brave of you to voice your opinion.
I stay at home with my son because that is what I choose to do and that is what God has called me to do and He has been providing for us. It has been hard and we have made many sacrifices but it has been so worth it. I, like you, have been trying to get others to see the big picture without trying to force my opinion on them. I just want to open their hearts.
Much kudos to you!

Anonymous said...

I also meant to say.....yeah for going to therapy! Hopefully this will help lighten the load in your mind. It can be a VERY cleansing experience!

Anonymous said...

Crystal, I don't know what ivory tower you're living in, but the scenario you described about the woman in Australia happens in this country every. freaking. day. My own mother has hepatitis C. She's already had one transplant. About five years out from her transplant the virus started attacking her new liver. She has two options at this point - wait for another transplant or go on Interferon, a chemo-like drug that is known to eliminate the hepatitis C virus in the body. We actually have several close friends and family members that have been through it successfully. My mother was judged by her specialists to be an excellent candidate with an excellent chance of success, but insurance decided it costs too much and won't pay for it. So now we wait for my mother to slowly deteriorate until she's a candidate for a new liver, and hope there's a donor out there for her before she dies. AND hope that insurance will pay for another transplant.

Kelly said...

For all the screaming and hysteria on both sides, everyone actually wants the exact same thing: To be able to see a doctor and get medicine, and not have to live in a mud hut on the street in order to be able to afford it.

As for this bill, I think we're adding more burden to a Medicaid system that we already aren't funding properly. I think our government does things backwards. They spend, and then try to find money later. They need to find the money and acquire it, and then spend it. It won't do you any good to be eligible for Medicaid if you can't find a doctor who accepts it or a pharmacy to fill your prescription.

It does make me giggle that as part of the bill, they're going to lecture us on financial management.

Amanda said...

LOVE the new hair! I too am glad that some reform is going on. I may not be crazy about this bill but at least things are finally changing. We too pay for insurance out of pocket and it eats up our income faster than I even knew was possible! And we are all healthy!