When we left you last time, Barbara* was in the process of telling her story about being diagnosed with breast cancer and not having medical insurance coverage for self-employed in Dallas.
Without further ado, here is the rest of Barbara’s story:
“The tests that led to my diagnosis alone put me several thousand dollars in debt. I had a small emergency fund that I’d set aside, but just one bill wiped that out completely.
My doctor advised me of my treatment options, and we both felt that a radical mastectomy would offer the highest chance of success, but I still didn’t know how I was going to pay for it. Since time was of the essence, I did the only thing I could think of to do: I took out a second mortgage on my home.
With the money I got from the loan, I was able to raise enough funds to secure my surgery, with a payment arrangement for the remaining balance. I am eternally grateful to my doctor for allowing me to do that much.
However, making two mortgage payments every month, plus making payments to the doctor, all on top of my regular bills quickly proved to be more than I could handle, especially while recovering. It wasn’t long before I was forced into bankruptcy.
I lost everything. The bank took possession of my home and I was forced to move into my parents’ basement. While I am grateful that I did have somewhere to go, it was still a devastating blow to lose something I’d worked so hard to obtain on top of everything else.
So many times, I’ve kicked myself for not obtaining at least some type of medical insurance coverage for self-employed in Dallas—even if it was just catastrophic insurance. I may have been able to hold on to my home if every medical expense I had didn’t have to come out of pocket.
Today, I’m slowly rebuilding my business after having to put it on hold for several months. Many of my loyal clients understand my situation and are glad to give me a second chance, but I have lost my trustworthiness with others. It’s difficult, being my age and living with your parents—and then trying to build a business back at the same time.
If I could give one piece of advice to anyone, it would be not to skip out on getting medical insurance coverage for self-employed in Dallas. Yes, it would have put me another year or two away from buying my house had I paid those premiums instead of saved it away for a down payment. But, I would have been able to keep that house once I got it, despite my cancer diagnosis.
It’s just not worth it to live with that kind of insecurity. I have medical insurance coverage now, and I never plan to be without it again—even if I’m never sick another day in my life. There’s just too much unknown out there to take the gamble.”