Nutella flavored medical debt.

You guys out there? You still voting?

Honestly, how much longer will this last… well, the email they sent me states that I need to be available end of July for the trip to Palm Springs. Palm Springs in dead of summer. Ohhhh Kayyyy. Hope there’s a pool.

A new Costco opened by our house on May 4th. We’ve been waiting with baited breath as currently we live ~25 long minutes from one. That’s too long for frozen sweet cherries to do anything but turn to mush and then re-freeze into one solid block. Don’t get me wrong, we still shopped there, but it just was more a destination.

But now. BUT NOW.

You guys, it’s 7 minutes from us and I went there (somewhat on accident) 4 times in the last week. It’s just so convenient and so damn cheap. And so damn cheap meaning it’s a better deal than Whole Foods, by the ounce, but overall I am spending way too much more on groceries. Goodbye well stuck to budget. The problem is, now I have things like 2.5lbs of organic cashews and my kids ate through an Annie’s Cheddar Puffs bag THE SIZE OF SELAH! in under a week.

Jude is obsessed with Costco, the way Jude is obsessed with anything. He loves things that are indulgent! Big! Novel! So, he had been counting down, with the day marked clearly on the family calendar, for May 4th: Costco’s Opening Day! I thought we were counting down, directionally. However, on May 4th at 7am he asked, “So, what time is Costco open?” Surely he didn’t expect us to head to opening day- it’d be a mad house.

(Narrator laughs, ‘Oh yes Betsy, surely that’s exactly what he expected…)

So there we were. Costco. Opening Day. Packed to the brim with our fellow man.

Jude was on cloud-9. He was buzzing down the aisles reporting back to me on all the amazing deals! and huge sizes! It’s fun watching him be enthralled and to be honest, I was having a great time too, actually.

Enter mid-life: when a new grocery store with good deals makes for a riveting morning and lots of warm, fuzzy feelings. I texted Josh, “I can’t believe how happy I feel here.”

I remember the same feeling, directionally, when we got back from Philly and I went to our local Whole Foods. The smells, the “wide, open, spaces” !! and the luxurious parking lot. All the normal things that made me feel so fully alive. Costco is the same.

Life continues to be weird.

It actually wasn’t a terrible crowd- there were a LOT of people, but they had that place moving like a well-oiled machine and even with huge crowds, we got 47 samples and checked-out after only waiting for a single cart in front of us.

When we got to check-out the clerk asked if we had found everything we needed.

2, 40oz containers of Nutella? Check.

Honey Smoked Salmon that MELTS IN YOUR MOUTH? Check.

Kettle Corn being marketed by some guy saying it was made in Denver and his grandma’s recipe? Check.

“Well, I am not sure we need any of this, but yes, we found it all.”

“Great, and would you like to round-up your total and make a donation to Children’s Hospital?”

“Oh…haha…. no, no, no I don’t need to make a donation to them. I already owe them plenty.”

The clerk and the woman helping him bag laughed.

Children’s Miracle Network is currently doing a fundraiser at our local Costco. The money raised there, through some siphoning I assume, will then be donated to Children’s Hospital of Colorado.

And that’s great. Good. Great for… everyone, I suppose.

BUT (steps onto soap box…) Wouldn’t it be nice if kids could be treated at children’s hospitals without a need for multi-millions of dollars in donation? Wouldn’t it be grand if our medical/insurance system was set-up in a way that didn’t cause debilitating, financial distress.

I can’t get us all the way there. Not now, but honestly probably not ever. I am a wee drop in the ocean. Our ~$40,000 medical debt, and $7,500 annual out of pocket max won’t ruin us… though it will ruin our family vacation planning… But I don’t have the gumption (or really even chance) of ever changing the system.

However, HOW EVER. If any of you out there are at Costco this month and are led to donate to Children’s Miracle Network, what about, if you just vote for me, via donation, instead?

Good deal, eh?

Children’s Miracle Network gets it’s donation. Children’s Hospital of Colorado gets it’s support. And me? Oh well, little ole’ me, may win $20,000 to spend directly on our own medical debt.

Two of the hundreds of doses of chemo that Beaudin had were chemo called PEG. Each dose of PEG cost $45,979.92 That’s >$90,000 on two doses of chemo.

In June of 2020, just over 18 months in to treatment, we had been billed $1,537,490 (we were with a medical share program, and not getting that insurance discount.) That was 3 years ago.

We were dropped from our medical share program bc when Beau relapsed we had met the 1 million dollar per incidence maximum.

The reason we went to CHOP instead of staying local for relapse therapy is because the cell manufacture process, alone, costs over $500,000 for CAR T.

You guys, the medical system and it’s financial underpinning are a big cluster of impossibility. We shouldn’t be in a place where you are being asked to make donations to non-profits that bridge the gap, because there should be no gap to bridge.

But here we are.

I am not going to spend all $20,000 of my winnings on medical debt, so I won’t sell you on the false belief. But I will prob throw half of it at the monthly recurring charge from CHCO that at this point will be pulling from our bank account until 2026. The other half? Giving it all to Jude for more Nutella.

So. Anyway, Costco is open, the smoked salmon hits, and we only have 2 days to get me out of 4th place and on my way to the dessert during the hottest month of the year.

Make it happen. For Jude’s Nutella.

2 thoughts on “Nutella flavored medical debt.”

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