Day Twenty Six

It's been that kind of week. 

First off, I hope everyone had a great holiday week. Mine was a bit up and down, but I did spend some quality time with my family. So, it was worth it in the end.

Today, I’d like to stray from my typical blog topics and talk a little about my ongoing health insurance woes. This week, they hit an all time low and I figured it’s a situation worth writing about.

I’ll begin by mentioning that I have ADHD. I was diagnosed in the third grade and I’ve been on medication ever since. For anyone wondering, yes, I have tried to wean myself off it several times. However, my symptoms remain. Trust me when I say, I would not be on this medication if it weren’t a necessity. I actually lowered my dosage last summer, because I was starting to experience strong side effects, such as paranoia, anxiety and panic attacks.

I feel much better now though. I found a dosage that works perfectly for me and it allows me to focus on something for more than 20 seconds. Contrary to what some think, it doesn’t give me extra energy or some kind of weird high. It simply stabilizes my mind, so my thoughts don’t constantly wander around.

Throughout the years though, my ADHD medication has been the cause of countless headaches. Mostly because insurance companies act like it’s the devil’s handy work. I’m not allowed to get more than one prescription at a time and I can only get a 30-day supply. That means I visit the doctor every single month for a new prescription. Those costs start to add up, but honestly, if that were the extent of it I’d feel OK. However, pharmacies rarely carry it and insurance companies are starting to drop the generic version off their plans, which further limits my options. There’s more to it than that, but I think I covered a bulk of my anguish.

Fast forward to this week. I received my new health insurance card in the mail, only to find it accompanied by a rider claiming the company will not cover any ADHD medication. I immediately called a customer service rep and her exact words to me were, “We are not responsible for anything a broker says to you in order to get you to purchase a policy.” How ridiculous is that? I know I’ll figure something out in the end, but this week certainly solidified my disbelief in the current system.

Simply put, you should always be prepared. It may not be medication, but if you’re ever planning a project or trip of any kind, it’s always good to anticipate issues ahead of time. 

6 days until Boston. 

-Steve-

Hurry Up & Wait...

 

"Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet." — Jean-Jacques Rousseau 

I know I've been rather silent over the past month and I'm sure updates will be few and far between, until December rolls around. However, I didn't want anyone thinking that I'm sitting here with my legs up, sipping martinis (I only do that on alternating weekends).

Rest assured, I am as busy as ever.  

You may have noticed that I secured an agency in Chicago—TRIS3CT.  With this confirmation, I've now mapped out my entire tour except for the final two stops. Of course, given these dates are well over a year away, I don't see myself having any announcements about them until next spring at the earliest. I also think it's a bit exciting to start this project, not knowing where exactly it's going to end. Oh, I need to mention Trunks Up! Marketing and Jakprints too! These great companies have signed on as project sponsors and I'm happy to have them aboard. 

Other than that, I am hard at work securing new sponsors and building partnerships that will increase the project's visibility and overall ROI for everyone involved. I'm also beginning to look at my travel options, budgets, housing needs, etc. If there's one piece of advice I can to someone looking to spearhead a project like this—or any large-scale project for that matter—it's that you have to be ready and willing to tackle all the tedious behind the scenes work ahead of time. The more you have planned out upfront, the less of a headache it will be later. 

So, there you have it. I have 2 agencies to go and I'm hoping to secure 2 more financial sponsors before December. I'm just over the half way mark on my budgeting goal and I'm confident I can secure the rest in the coming months (fingers crossed).  

As always, if you'd like to become a sponsor, join in this great adventure or just grab a drink when I'm in town, shoot me a line at zombieparmesan@gmail.com or tweet me @zombieparmesan. 

Forms and Forms and Forms

"There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure." — Colin Powell

 

Have you ever planned a trip to Disney World? Well, imagine the logistics nightmare of planning 14 back-to-back trips... to 14 different Disney Worlds... with one of them being in Canada. Now take a deep breath.

I just completed my application for a temporary work visa. I filled out no less than a million and a half forms and I have to say, I feel pretty good to have crossed that hurdle. I should know if I've been approved around November or December, so keep your fingers crossed for me.

If you ever plan on working in or visiting Canada, let me save you some time. You need to visit http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/index-int.asp  with your resume, passport and certifications on-hand and ready to go. It's a lengthy process, so be sure to block a few hours to complete the application. All in all, it's pretty painless and only costs $150. A small price to pay to visit our wonderful neighbors to the north.

Oh, I forgot to mention that Canada's foreign service officers are currently on strike. I'm sure that won't trip up my application at all.  

Lastly, I want to extend very warm welcomes to BEAM Interactive in Boston, Red Tettemer O'Connell + Partners in Philly and Campbell Mithun in Minneapolis. All three agencies have signed on to the project and I'm thrilled to have them.