Today is THE day, the day I started working towards when I graduated from law school 24 years ago in my late 30s and went into government service. Being able to get my family of five, with two of three children with pre-existing conditions and a wife with expensive utilization of mental health provisions (we were kicked out of our Blue Cross/Blue Shield plan for using covered services), into the government's gold-standard health care plan (basically its single-payor, and it works mostly great), had everything to do with my mid-life career choice.
Only in America would the health-care industry boot an asthmatic two-year old toddler, a sickly one-year old baby and a panic-attack stricken adult out of their existing, fully-being-paid-for plan into Virginia's catastrophic individual family policy which I quickly found was an expensive (ruinous) joke akin to a pay-fully-for-everything-as-well-as-triple-the-former-premiums "plan." I'll meet those health care plan industry executives in hell, along with all divorce lawyers except my own, when I'm done with this life.
I hear the gentle patter of rain falling outside. It rained on my wedding day too, 37 years ago.
My three children, the ones I struggled to get proper health insurance for, for whom I purchased tuition plans for with them as beneficiaries that paid 100% of their college tuition and fees using money given to me by my mother, haven't spoken to me in over half a decade nor any member of my family in over a decade. Only in America.
In 2010 I took a retirement seminar just to see what the possibilities were despite knowing that I would have to work till I died after the five-year divorce litigation destroyed me financially pursuant to her nefarious and sick-minded plan. I discovered that the maximum enhancement for my retirement formula, insignificant as it might be, accrued on 4/15/14.
Any time worked past that date gilded the edges slowly for sure as the years droned on, but that date became emblazoned in my mind. It's here.
Almost all my college friends have retired or are retiring this year. But I can't afford to retire, yet.
After living through a life-altering modern western divorce, and the calamitous (in so many ways!) Dubya presidency, perhaps next decade, or next year. Or perhaps next month, or tomorrow.
But I'll go in to work today and keep at it, working under the supervision of my thirty-something managers. After almost four decades of work at jobs ranging from dishwasher to bartender, cop to lawyer, I know one thing foremost among many things--that managers are in it primarily for themselves.
My few friends who really know the workings of my mind say that I don't have a plan, I have a date. But it has arrived, hasn't it.