This morning, Team McJohnson went in for their mole checkup, as a family. A family that takes preventative skin cancer measures together, stays together.
We now go to Josh’s dermatologist because in 2013, I had Josh’s health insurance. In 2014, I have health insurance via my employer. This was a financial decision, since economically it does not make sense for us to be on a family plan at either employer. As we checked in at the receptionist, I was told that I needed a referral. This was news to me, but I handled it well. I handled it like how we always handle things in this family: I threw money at it.
Instead of trying to get my primary care physician, who I had only seen once last July, to date a referral for today, I just decided to pay for the appointment out of pocket. We were quoted $80. A big fat SELF label was now adhered to my file. The doctor was concerned that I was paying out of pocket while my husband had health insurance. I explained the situation and literally motioned like the baby throwing money out the window. He said he understood and would not do any procedures that day and wait until I had my referral. I did not need any procedures so he, again, mentioned today should not cost more than $85.
When I checked out the total was $110. All paid for via a combo of my remaining FSA money and $5 from Josh’s HSA.
I recently lost $7.36 and I am mad as hell about it. I also recently spent $1000 to fly across the country last minute and go to a wedding and consider that one of the best decisions I have made recently. What’s the difference? Well, the $7.36 was on a gift card that I earned via a very specific grocery discount program. The trip was paid for from the travel savings account that grows via an automatic deduction from our bank account each month. That money is only used on travel, not touched for anything else.
I am very weird about coupons and gift cards. A gift card you are given can only be used to treat yourself. Don’t buy a gift with it or something that is a necessity. Coupons should always be used. If you let a coupon expire, you are throwing away money. I just sent an e-mail to my entire family this weekend telling them not to use my $7 ExtraBucks on my CVS card. I have something special in mind for that!
I will stand outside a restaurant and make an OpenTable reservation via the app, then walk in and eat. A coworker, older, more established, once claimed OpenTable dining points useless. Every 100 points is only $1 in rewards, she said. EXACTLY! That is a $1 I didn’t have before. Our anniversary dinner will be (partially) paid for with a nice $100 OpenTable Dining Cheque.
But yet, when it comes to services, sometimes Team McJohnson is just ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. We have to go to a car wash to wash the Volvo, since we live in an apartment complex. And for some reason, Northern Virginia doesn’t have very many self serve car washes. We have to pay people to wash the car. This last time, there was still bird poop on the window shield as we drove away. I asked Josh if we should mention it. He started to, then thought better of it. You just don’t want to be that guy who complains when you can take Windex to it at home. They did the hard part! Washing and vacuuming!
This brings us back to today. Josh didn’t want to go through the hassle of contacting insurance when we had the money to just pay for the appointment. But that just irks me, especially since the same thing happened to me earlier this year at our dental office. I feel like our health insurance is only for a catastrophe. If you couldn’t tell, one part of this relationship is quicker to the window with piles of cash than the other. Perhaps you would say we balance each other out.
But I, of course, will still be fuming about that $7.36.