When I was in kindergarten about 1975 or thereabouts, I remember the teacher spending a day with us talking about surgery. I don't know if this happened to anyone else, but the gist was that Science has discovered that we have some useless organs that do nothing but cause trouble, so I'm going to discuss what it's like when your tonsils are removed. I thought it was pretty cool because I would get the whole week off from school and eat ice cream every day. I wasn't as keen on the appendectomy lecture, but what bugged me the most was when she brought up the what ifs of dialysis and diabetes. I've never liked needles, so the idea of giving myself injections seemed just as horrible as losing a leg.
So guess what? Doctor has determined that I need to move to the next level of treatment and start injecting medication. Didn't like the idea, but the knowledge that they would be in pen form made me think that it was something I could handle. Then they arrived. I was thinking about the size of a fat fountain pen, right? Wrong! You know when you stop at Stuckey's and you get that giant pencil with a map of New Mexico on it? Yeah, about that size. Then the nurse calls and says "The starter dose is four." Then I warm up four of them and because my courage has faltered I go out to the local clinic to ask them to help and they reply "We don't do that medication, it's alien to us." And I say "It's subcutaneous, it's not like I'm asking you to jab my pineal gland." And they say "Take it to the doctor who prescribed it to you." And I say "They are all out of the office today. I wanted to do it now because I have tomorrow off so I can recuperate if I have a bad reaction. I exposed myself to ridicule by putting my white chicken legs in shorts to come out here! Fine, I'll do it myself." So with a little help from the instruction booklet and YouTube, I did.
Two thoughts popped into my head afterwards. First, being angry really cuts fear and pain. Second, in a post apocalyptic world, I'm the one pushing a propane fridge around in a wheelbarrow.
The only silver lining is that my company has really good health insurance. The market price of my medication is $6500, but I'm paying $95 a box. Given my schedule, that's about a dollar a day. Not too bad. The reality though, is that my company can offer really good insurance and retirement because they are retail, and don't expect anyone to actually buy it.