It Could Always Be Worse

I feel like things are going pretty well for us right now, which makes me feel guilty. While friends are dealing with their parents’, their families’, their kids’, or even their own health issues, I’m getting my first official clean bill of health from the OB (she said at our appointment yesterday that we’re now “boring”), and Charlie’s finally being recognized for his hard work. He asked me not to say anything specific about it until it’s all in writing, but despite this place not being his ultimate career choice, he could do a lot worse than what’s being offered. He claims he wants to stick with it for a while, get things paid off, and utilize the difference in our schedules to take care of the kid while I’m at school or work for the time being.

Of course, don’t get me wrong; there’s no telling exactly when that will happen (promises have been made in the past at this job without any follow-through), there’s always the chance something could go wrong with the pregnancy, and I’m still paying on all of my medical bills. That glucose tolerance test? The one that turned out to be completely fine? The one I probably didn’t really need since I was barely on the high end of normal? That’s going to cost me somewhere around $800 after insurance pays its miniscule amount.

The bills will only get larger and larger while my paychecks get smaller and smaller. When I take off time after having the baby, I’ll probably have at least a few thousand in hospital bills — and that’s without anything unusual, including not having any drugs. Sarah from work had a totally natural childbirth and only went to the hospital because her mom demanded it. She was there for barely 36 hours altogether and went straight home as soon as they’d let her. So I have no idea what it will cost if something goes wrong, I need a C-section, I ask for drugs, or I actually use some of their soap.

Yeah, I’m uncomfortable and fat, I have a headache all the time and I can’t sleep, my activities every day are centered around how close something is to a bathroom, and I’m really burnt out at work (like, I can’t even look some people in the eye anymore because I’m so f-ing sick of them). But it could be worse. I just need an occasional perspective adjustment. For the most part, I think seeing what friends are going through right now is making me really appreciate what I have.

There is one thing, though . . . I’m not close to my mom’s family at all, so while this information is sad and shocking, I’m not sure what I can do about it.

One of my cousins (I only have two on that side. The other one, this guy’s brother, is in prison.) was in some sort of accident a couple of weeks ago that continues to perplex doctors and his mom. One late Friday night, my mom’s sister got a call from my cousin’s “friend,” saying he had fallen and hit his head. I believe what he was diagnosed with after a CAT scan was an epidural hematoma, and had to have surgery to remove it. Afterward, he had a violent reaction to the general anesthesia, was confused, and it took several days for him to understand where he was and what was going on. Right now, his latest memory is from over a month ago and the surgeon is saying it does not look like he just “fell down,” but it appears as if he was hit with a baseball bat.

Since he cannot recall anything that happened a couple of weeks ago when he was injured, there’s no way to know how he got hurt or if anyone else can be held accountable. My mom has kept me updated as things happen, but right now it looks like he’ll be heading to a rehab facility upon his release from the hospital, and he may or may not need some kind of care for the rest of his life. He’s only 28 years old.

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