I don’t know what you do when you wake up at 4:30 a.m. and can’t go back to sleep but lately I’ve developed a bad habit of rolling over and reaching for my glasses and iPAD to see what the rest of the world is doing. This morning, I was greeted with the following karmic message in my inbox.


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When I was a newbie in Washington, DC in the 90s working for US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in the Office of Organ Transplantation (DOT), one of my jobs was organizing public hearings to finalize organ allocation policies —


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I’m often asked what it’s like to live with heart disease. For me, the physical limitations have been much less difficult to manage than the emotional and psychological ones. Heart patients are cautioned about becoming “cardiac cripples”—overly anxious and worried about their future to the point that it affects their health.  Yep, I’ve done that.


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It was 1998 and I had just moved to Louisville, Kentucky, very close to where I grew up as a child.  I was returning to my native state to care for my mother who was dying of ovarian cancer and her mother who was bedbound by a stroke.  My life had been interrupted and part of me was okay about that and part of me was not.  Caregiving can be hard.


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According to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, starting on September 23, 2012, your health plan must provide your policy in language you can understand.  Along with that, there’s a new SBC  — Standard Benefits and Coverage — form that all health plans will be using in the U.S. to help you understand what you owe, what they owe, and what isn’t paid at all. 


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