Wednesday, 9 April 2014

In the Nature of a Rant about Insurance Company Lackeys

I'm really really angry. 

My life was turned upside down by a mishap, and I get mealy-mouthed stuff about "not having provided documentary evidence" for small stuff like my clothes and my USB stick. And the big stuff is apparently not worth considering.. I can't drive a nasty old banger for my business - in fact the current car is not a patch on the old one and I really don't like it much.

When the tree landed on my car, it not only stopped my forward progress on the road, it started a big train of events that have affected me very badly, are still affecting me, and will probably never go away.  I want to draw a line under all this, but every time I knock my left hand, or have to get up slowly because my knee is stiff, or have to apologise to yet another customer because my business has been inefficient for several months, I am forcibly reminded that this was not a momentary occurrence. It continues.  It will continue. 

When you are ill or have an accident, you have a salary, which continues, and there are people in your organisation who will see that your work is done, and I expect that you would not lose your job if you had to spend some time going to and from a hospital. I'm self-employed.  I've been self-employed all my life. There is only me.  If I can't do it, no-one else can, because there is no-one else.. My husband helps, but he can't do my job in the way I do, and his expertise is not mine.. And it's not like he has nothing else to do, as he puts his business aside to help me. His efforts and losses are not covered?  How tough.. Was I supposed to walk? Manage on my own? If I had employed a helper, would they get paid?

I am only still in business because I'm stubborn, used to self-sufficiency, and unwilling to give up and lie down.. It would have been so very easy to give up and lie down, but who would then be the breadwinner in my house, and what would I do for the rest of my life?  It would certainly have cost you more if I had done that, but I get little lectures on "mitigating my losses"  Well I did that, for all the good it's done me.

For the first couple of weeks after the Tree, I was forced to ask for help with cutting up my dinner and tieing my shoes, could not dress myself or go anywhere without help.   That's humiliating.  It was two months before I could drive myself anywhere. That's appalling..  I managed to keep a little part of the business running by dint of asking for assistance and calling in every offer of help, with all the loss of face that entails. And because I didn't lie down, I get less..  If I could have just sat and allowed myself to heal, that would have been very nice, but I would have been very thoroughly unemployed at the end.. I don't think you would have offered me a nice pension, so perhaps its a good thing that I struggled on? Or was it a bad move?  I have had to swallow a lot of pride..

I'm not recovered, but I need to settle this, so that I don't get any further into debt; any more angry; any more unhappy about the pettifogging stupid, idiotic pettiness of all this..  My knee is permanently scarred and will never regain full sensation.  When the tree hit it not only tore the flesh, but also burned the skin, the speed was so great.  My hands are my livelihood, both of them were and are damaged permanently.  All the fingers on my left hand were operated on to remove glass, one had to have a tendon repaired.. Do you know how painful and disabling that is? Patently not..The Hand Clinic was wonderful and Mr Meyer most helpful, but there is a limit to what they can do. They assure me that it will be at least a year before the left hand functions properly again, and that the scars are permanent. My GP was horrified that I was working..
My left hand is still lacking full movement and neither hand is ever going to be as strong as before.   Can you imagine what this means to someone who works with their hands?  Can you for a moment imagine how I felt for the nine miserable hours in A & E, or how my husband felt, waiting for those same nine hours without news or any idea what was happening?  Can you imagine how frustrating it is not to be able to work for so long when it's such a big part of your life?  I suspect not.  I also suspect that you absolutely don't care.

Can you understand that I am only managing because I have been lent money, offered help, and given serious amounts of leeway by friends and students.. All that will have to be repaid sometime soon.  Some things may never come back - it's very hard to restart a teaching practice after a break and letting people down.  I don't imagine you want to offer me anything for the loss of goodwill..
All this is not going to leave much change out of your little settlement, and I will still have to struggle with a reduced capacity..

Review the medical stuff please.. Both the GP and the Hand Clinic are happy to reassess me if required.  It seems pathetic to offer so little for so much harm.
And get your numbers right.  Nine clinic visits, plus the physio, plus the GP, and all the rest..

Four fingers on my left hand, two on the right, knee, lack of sleep, pain, frustration, loss of business.. Two thousand pounds? What a joke..

1 comment:

  1. Oh, dear Helen Howes, I am sorry to hear of your misfortune. I often pass by your blog. My husband and I visited and bought a treadle from you and a small wall hanging. We lived nr Louth.
    Have moved to Wragby because husband had a stroke. Still do sewing, but not often enough. Sent you once a amateurish sample by post.
    Hope with all my heart your health improves.
    Thoughtful regards, Juliane Longden


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