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  • Writer's pictureAnnelise

Surviving Cancer = Chronic Debt

"I am 55 years old and a 4 year survivor of breast cancer. I was treated very aggressively at Dana-Farber, so I could not work. The chemo gave me osteoporosis so I had to have both knees replaced. Then 2 years ago I had a heart attack. It was an inherited electrical problem. I have always been HEALTHY. I grew up on a chicken farm. Worked hard and lived a good life. Now I am disabled, and glad to wake up every morning! Hopeful and at peace with the situation. Free from want. But as a result, we have serious financial problems because my husband keeps losing his job. I don't think we can refinance anymore. He's looking at getting laid off in January. We've lost our investment values. And we are facing a $900 a month payment to COBRA, $100 to Medicare, between $700-$900 in co-pays to medications, a HIGH mortgage, groceries, utilities.....Thank God we don't have charge cards and cars, boats, etc. We have to keep the medical. We have no choice. So, we'll live off the charge card, again, until he gets a job. I wonder where this world is going. We need to keep jobs here and make the essentials affordable. I don't know how families are making it. Did I mention my husband is a professional? In the computer industry where all the jobs are now in India, China, etc. We used to own a grocery store in Maine but a Mexican migrant worker burned it down. These knocks have been tough. All I ask for is his job and not to have to worry so much about medical coverage. Thank you for listening and God Bless."
- Alice, East Hampstead, NH

Story collected by the Susan G. Komen Advocacy Alliance

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