Aging into the system – kicking and screaming

Courtesy of forwardstl via Flickr

In the past week or so, I have had some of the most depressing events of my life. First, I signed up for Medicare. That is just nasty. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful that the government has such a thing but it is complicated. There are alphabetical parts much like a soup. You NEED to sign up for A and probably B. Then there is Medicare Advantage or else more alphabets. I ended up with N. I am not sure if it’s the best fit for me but it’s where I ended up. There is the drug plan to select too. Yikes.

The government doesn’t make it easy. First I was on-line to calculate social security scenarios for planning purposes. The choices were survivor’s benefits, disability or old age benefits. None of them fit me. I actually had to read the definitions to conclude that I wanted the “old age benefits” icon. Me! I am not OLD! Nor do I plan to be old in the near future. Why didn’t they call it retirement benefits? Or maybe post-working benefits? Actually, they should call it “you finally made it here alive” benefits. Anything but old age.

I navigated the website and moved onto Medicare and the alphabet soup selection. I talked to very nice phone representatives but they use terms like, “you are aging into the system so it’s guarantee issue.” Loosely translated that means you are so freaking old that they won’t look at your health conditions if you sign up for the insurance NOW!

It took three hours, almost all on the phone. By the end of the process, I really needed some fun so I got a flu shot. After all, those of us old-timers who are “aging into the system” damn well  better take good care of ourselves so there’s money left for the young whippersnappers who are in their 40’s and 50’s. I believe that for those of you who are younger than that, there will be something else in place. There is no way you will tolerate the abusive language they use.

At the end of the day I had health benefits for next year, a flu shot and a really wonderful massage from Melanie. She has glorious hands that dekinked everything the government had kinked up. It was a perfect ending to an otherwise depressing week.

7 thoughts on “Aging into the system – kicking and screaming

  1. Very funny in a sobering way! Yes, young people might be facing something entirely different by the time they have to look into Medicare. I hope it will still be there for them. Too bad the government just can’t seem to find a way to make navigating the system a lot simpler. There’s no good reason for the complexity.


  2. I’m not there yet either, but the countdown to it is in single digits. So the conclusion is that figuring out everything isn’t easy, but writing about it in a humorous way helps cope and without form, reimbursement, or payment.


  3. Oh Kate, I LOVED this open honest look at what ALL of us are going through one way or another. Here in Bermuda, we don;t have medicare but we do have other similar programs. In March my husband will be a “Special Person” Nice way of saying he is old. ha ha But he gets 100% free bus rides and ferry rides for the rest of his life. And we get our yearly car licence FREE (usually $1200 plus). As well our house taxes are free for the home we live in (not others we own) So it is pretty good here. By the way his mother is 96 so he may just bankrupt the system here. He goes in marathons etc. TOO healthy. ha ha
    Anyway LOVE all your posts. Smile because you are not getting old… are becoming SPECIAL!


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