In the USA, I’m allowed to set money aside from my paycheck to cover medical expenses. The money is pre-tax, so there is about a 30% savings by doing it this way.
Every year, my wife and I pull a number out of thin air and create what’s called a Flex account for this purpose. My employer handles the rest for me. I never touch the money. I am given a card to use when paying for medical stuff.
The insurance through my employer is very good, but I use my Flex card to cover my portion. The year runs from July through June in my case, and most years we spend it all by October. This brief explanation is for my non-USA readers.
This means that it’s rarely my turn and I tend to skip things. I got some specific things checked that everyone is supposed to get at fifty. I got mine at fifty-three to give you an example.
This year we had money left, and I’d been griping about my eyes. We decided to get me an appointment, and that I could spend freely. The reason is when Flex money is left over, the government gets to keep it. No arguments, the ability to budget is my sole responsibility. This causes us to be careful how much we put in the Flex account, and we try to put slightly less than what we need in there.
Turns out, I haven’t had an eye appointment since 2012. That was the year I learned about tri-focals and refused to get them. I’m on the computer so much that a sliver of correction isn’t good enough. I chose to get two sets of glasses; one for regular use, and one for computer use. Each pair of glasses is bifocal with a reading chip in them.
Turns out things are worse. Not a big surprise, since I was complaining about my eyes. All three corrections are going up, with my reading and computer vision correcting +2. I am kind of excited, because the testing machine clarity was so much better.
With Flex money to burn, I decided to get two new pair of frames too. I currently have a squarish pair for regular use, and an oval pair for workstation use. I hoped to do this again, but that isn’t the case.
Turns out ovals are out of style. It’s just nice to be able to know which pair is which, even by touch. I really like my tiny glasses, but it looks like the new ones will be bigger too. I like more of what I call a cowboy style; wire frames, small, etc. I got as far as wire frames.
I really freaked them out when I asked for glass lenses. Turns out they are not en Vogue either. I’m rough on glasses and plastic lenses would get all scratched up in no time. As such, it’s going to take about four weeks to get my new glasses.
I asked about Lasik, and learned that I am a poor candidate for the surgery.
Who knows, maybe my new glasses will cut down on eye strain. I might be able to write longer without feeling like someone is shoving hot bamboo splinters into my eyes. Maybe I’ll even spot the occasional typo that slips through.
Do any of you skip medical maintenance issues? Do you take a back seat to the rest of your family? Is anyone able to be an author with tri-focals? Do I have to change my Moai banner when the new frames arrive?