- I'm a glass-half-full type of girl. I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, grave's disease and celiac disease in 2010 and life-altering allergies in 2013. I believe having a positive attitude is the only way to live with dis-ease. I also believe that life doesn't have to be PERFECT for it to be WONDERFUL. Dis-ease is expensive, so I live a frugal yet healthy lifestyle. This is just my blog; my day-to-day story.
Friday, December 9, 2011
On being broke and diabetic.
It's not easy being poor when you're a t1 diabetic with celiac disease. Sadly, I wouldn't be poor if I was healthy. I make a decent salary, enough where I should be able to afford nice things. I have no credit card debt. I should have a healthy amount of disposable income. But I don't. Why? Because being a person with diabetes or a person with celiac is damn expensive. When I was eventually diagnosed with both diseases? I actually heard my checkbook explode.
I pay several hundred dollars a month for just two of my prescriptions (insulin and test strips). Let's not forget there are copays for lancets, ketostix, glucagon, insulin pump pods ($450 for a 3 month supply is my portion of the copay), and CGM sensors (another $450 for a 3 month supply is my portion of the copay). And I have two other auto-immune diseases I have to treat.
Celiac is not cheap, either. Ever purchased a loaf of gluten free bread? It's $5.50 a loaf and up. A loaf that is HALF the size of a normal loaf of bread. Gluten free pasta? Triple the cost of your average pasta. Gluten free pretzels? They are $7.99 a bag. Compare that to the 99 cents the normal ones cost on sale. My food bill easily tripled when I got sick.
So how does an average single chick manage such expenses on her one income? The simple answer is, I don't always get the medication or supplies that I need. Not on a regular basis. I have to go without. I can't afford it. As for affording a gluten free diet, I don't buy bread, snack food or other processed treats, because I can't afford them. Although this forced medical diet has definitely helped me to eat a better, cleaner diet (read: meat and veggies), I do miss just stopping by the bakery on a rough day and grabbing a 6-pk of cupcakes for $2.49. My gluten free ones are $5.99 for a 2-pk. Want to make a sandwich? Not in the budget.
It just doesn't seem fair that someone who has a good job, makes a decent wage and purposely avoided wracking up credit card debt, can't afford the basic medication and supplies she needs just to be alive and healthy everyday. It just doesn't seem right to me.