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We’ve all seen those movies where the person backs up one step too many and finds themselves falling over the balcony, or the cliff, or the edge of the building. Or perhaps they hear the crack of the ice before they fall in or the click of the trigger of the land mine they’ve just stepped on.

I’ve always imagined that would be the most horrible feeling — knowing that your life was suddenly and completely in danger and utterly out of your control.

That’s how I felt Tuesday night.

My husband and I had gone to have a nice dinner and, as the restaurant was close to the pharmacy, I asked that we stop on the way back to pick up a prescription refill that I’d called in. It wasn’t one of those “urgent” prescriptions, so I had not taken the time to pick it up for a couple of days.

The pharmacy aide who knows me by sight, was reaching for my prescription even as I approached the counter. Then he kind of looked at me odd, lowered his voice and asked, “Have you had a change in your insurance? When we ran this through, it came back that your insurance was terminated.”

Crack. Click. Fall.

Now I can’t disclose the particulars of my severance agreement with my past company, but I will say (to their credit) there was a great deal of understanding about my health issues and I had been assured that the transition from insurance to COBRA coverage would be seamless.

It was a relatively inexpensive prescription, so I just paid for it knowing that when all of this got straightened out I could file for a reimbursement. However this was also the night before my rheumatologi$t’$ appointment and I really didn’t want to pay that out-of-pocket, particularly since I thought she might be injecting a joint or two.

Next-morning calls to the benefit supplier indicated that they had sent the notification to the insurance company concerning my coverage. Calls to the insurance company revealed that if they had received the notification, it hadn’t trickled through their system as yet because my coverage was, indeed, terminated as of November 30.

This story has a happy ending for me. Frantic emails to my old HR team worked magic and by the time I got to my rheumy appointment, the insurance system was once again agreeing that I was covered.

I can’t forget, however, the horrible feeling of suddenly finding myself uninsured and the great relief that I hadn’t been in a car accident or serious fall for the previous week. And as I look toward this joyous holiday season, I can only send up a prayer for those who, unlike me, haven’t had happy endings to their employer-sponsored insurance plans and who face the future with families and chronic diseases, but without insurance.

When I count my blessings, insurance is surely near the top of the list.

The friends I’ve made through this blog are right there at the top as well. Thanks for checking in.