Long ago and far away, in Jane Austen’s Village, Commonwealth of My Birth, a young lawyer asked a young social worker for a date. After they had been seen around town together a few times, the young lawyer ran into a friend from high school days, the unfortunately named Stuart Farrar. I say unfortunately because Stuart Farrar had a harelip, and he lisped both his S’s and his R’s.
Stuart saw the young lawyer (who would someday be my father) downtown on High Street. They were near the Commodore, a movie theatre, when Stuart inquired about my father’s new romance. Before you get any more serious, Billy, said Stuart, "you need to tetht heuh."
"Test her, Stuart?"
"Yeth, Billy. You have to tetht heuh dithpothition."
(At this point in the telling of the story, my father would grow amused with his imitation of poor Stuart. Let’s cut my dad a break, because he was really a nice guy all things considered.)
"How would I go about doing that, Stuart?"
"Well, Billy, firtht you athk heuh to go to the movies. Be thure to athk heuh to a movie she really wants to thee."
"All right. Then what?"
"Then when you get to the theatuh, you tell heuh you weally don’t want to thee the movie afteuh all! That’th how you tetht heuh dithpothition!!"
I’m glad to say my father never tested my mother’s disposition in that fashion, although he may have tested it every time he told the story about Stuart Farrar.
On days when my disposition is tested, I think of Stuart.
After much difficulty getting through to the doctor’s office due to a glitch with their phones, I finally saw the Physician’s Assistant this afternoon. She listened to my lungs and determined that we are not dealing with bronchitis or pneumonia, just the sequelae of the flu combined with my notoriously reactive airway. She gave me a prescription for an Albuterol inhaler.
Off I went to the pharmacy, where they were short-handed and there was a long line. The assistant suggested coming back in half an hour. Rather than go home I went next door to the wacky pagan items and spiritual healing store (complete with a clairvoyant doing readings and something called an angel portal). I dawdled around looking at books, which ranged from really cool books about women’s health and Buddhism to some fairly wacky stuff we won’t name. I saw a sand finger labyrinth that I hope someone will get me for my birthday.
I looked at dozens of decks of Tarot cards.
It’s one of my not-so-guilty secrets that I love Tarot cards. I appreciate archetypes and symbolism, and I like the images as a meditation tool. I found a deck I hadn’t seen before, once you can color in yourself.
It includes 8 pencil crayons.
Standing there not feeling particularly well and wondering whether I may not end up spending tomorrow on the couch, they looked like an attractive companion.
So, I bought them.
Then I went back to the drugstore, and here is where the tethting began to deepen. I asked for my prescription and heard these terrible words: "Your coverage expired on February 1st."
I got right on the phone to my insurance company, which referred me back to the office within the denomination that handles these things. They of course had gone home for the day, because it was after 4:30 Eastern Time.
I’ve talked to the appropriate person at church, and this seems to have been a misunderstanding. I have to pray that once that is communicated to the appropriate office, and the bill is paid, my family and I will be reinstated and covered once again. But for the moment the kids and I have no health insurance or dental or prescription coverage, and I have no life or disability insurance.
(Pure Luck has double coverage when on the job, so he is okay.)
On the bright side, the inhaler was (relatively) affordable even without the insurance.
Although if I had known I would be paying for it myself, I would have passed on the Tarot cards.
Yeth, my dithpothition hath been tethted today. It wasn’t a big help to my breathing and coughing difficulties. But I hope the fact that there are no words in this post consisting of all capital letters can be taken as proof that I have pathed the tetht.