Tuesday, April 19, 2016

P is for Premera #atozchallenge

This post is part of my first year doing the A to Z Challenge and I happen to be writing under the theme Gratitude: The Things That Keep Me Alive. This is a relevant theme for me as I am struggling with postpartum depression, and also have diagnosed anxiety and bipolar II (just to let you know what's going on with me-it might be pertinent as you read the post below). Thank you for stopping by and reading my post!

P is for Premera, as in the Premera Blue Cross insurance company, because without insurance I'd probably be long gone. Without insurance I wouldn't have been able to afford therapy, medications, inpatient treatment, ECT, or my DBT classes-it's taking a lot of resources to piece me back together! (and by me being able to afford I mean our family that is totally dependent on my husband's income)

Speaking of the hubster, he has a few choice words about Premera as well; from his own fingers, I present the hubster's point of view:

The second hospitalization prompted Premera to take a more active role in Hannah's care. A few days into her second hospitalization, I received a call from a "case manager" at Premera-totally out of the blue. My initial reaction was to be professional, but evasive as I did not want the insurance company to deny or reject any of the claims; however, after a few minutes talking with the case manager I found myself at ease. She understood what was happening and just needed to know more in order to offer solutions. I wasn't sure what she could do, but she did help to find Hannah's DBT program and it was nice to feel like I had a partner on the inside of the game. An ace up my sleeve if needed. For almost two months the case manager would check in about once a week to see how things were going and to see how Hannah was doing. It was nice to receive such a level of care with such concern: it was surprising and refreshing. The system does work when it needs to. Hubster out.

We're even grateful for Premera specifically because they covered my out of hospital birth at the birth center that was such an amazing experience. Not every insurance would *shakes finger*

Anyway, that's sort of a boring topic for P so I scraped around my brain for some other things I'm grateful for that fall under P and came up with persistence, pets, pictures, paperbacks, public libraries, and pretending. Why pretending? Well, "faking it til you make it" never really works for me but pretending I'm okay and stable and normal when I'm out and about in public can actually give me a break from my misery when I'm feeling down and without those breaks from the pain and darkness I might not have made it through.

Flamers might say I'm being dramatic but A) They're flamers, B) They obviously haven't dealt with major depression or these other disorders. I think my fellow survivors will identify with what I've typed here and I'm glad to be a partner (see there, another P!) in the effort toward greater mental health and support by being honest about my experience.

Putting these things out there and being honest can get dramatic because battling back a disease that has convinced you that killing yourself is a viable and preferable option to life, that's a dramatic thing. Don't ever feel like you're being a "drama queen" or "playing it up." Dealing with these types of issues gets dramatic but you're not alone.

In inpatient one of the most important things I learned was that I wasn't alone and that other people experience the same dramatic symptoms as I do. I learned that it wasn't me being a whiny, attention seeker; it was me struggling with a slew of disorders that have brought many good people to their knees.

So persist, my fellow sufferers. Pursue your futures and happiness and health. Plan for foibles along the way and plow through the mess of challenges along the way. Praise yourself and celebrate the everyday victories and know that someone believes in you.

PS Here's a bonus P and (word nerd alert) a fun word:


noun formal

the quality of having strong moral principles; honesty and decency


  1. A Perfect P post. And how wonderful to find an insurer with Principles...

  2. It's good to know you have a partner standing by you along with an insurer.

    1. Thank you, I am so grateful for him :o)

  3. Persist, pursue, praise ...good mental health care and the elimination of stigma attached to it. I hope we eventually reach a point in society where all mental health will be treated as any other illness. Isn't it about time? Great post, Hannah! I'm glad you have this wonderful support system and that you don't have to worry about finances in regards to treatment.

    1. I'm glad that I don't have to worry too! Thanks Martha :o)


Thank you for reading and commenting!

Be well, HBF