Elizabeth D

If ever there was a family that could advocate for the need for insurance, it would be mine!  Life is a crazy adventure filled with unpredictability.  When things go awry, insurance is the safety net that keeps a disaster from becoming a catastrophe!  As careful as a person may be, there are many things in life that are out of our control.  Life, auto, home, and medical insurance are essential and something every family needs to invest in to protect themselves.

In April 2008 when I was 8 years old, we came home from church one night to find our court filled with fire trucks.  A cop stopped my mom as we turned in.  I will never forget my mom asking, “Who’s house is on fire?” and his reply, “Yours is.”  My 5 year old brother and I were herded by neighbors to the sidewalk as my mom disappeared between the trucks.  It seemed like an eternity until she returned.  A friend came and took us to her house for a sleepover while my mom stayed behind.  My mom is a single mom who is tough, but I can’t even imagine how impossible this situation had to have been! Within just two days, the insurance company had us in an apartment where my cats were allowed.  Because of the comprehensive home insurance, my mom was able to make the next few months feel like an epic adventure.  Neighbors and friends rallied around us with support; but it was the insurance company rebuilding our house, providing a place to stay rent-free (mom was still paying the mortgage), and allowing her to replace lost furniture and toys that ultimately gave her the courage to continue to smile and laugh with us and never let on how frightening the situation really was.

A few years later at the end of 8th grade when I was 13, I became sick.  Vertigo episodes and fatigue progressed to weakness in my legs, muscle spasms, and severe leg pain. By 10th grade I was in a wheelchair most days and was experiencing paralysis in my legs for up to 45 minutes multiple times a day.  I have gone to countless specialist and have had multiple tests and MRIs. Initially pediatric MS and then Hyperkalemic Periodic Paralysis was suspected, but they still have no diagnosis.  With the help of doctors I have been able to control symptoms and can now lead a relatively normal life. Without health insurance my mom would never have been able to afford the countless specialist appointments and testing on her own. She would of done all she could, but it would have been financially devastating. There was many sleepless nights and fearful moments as my illness played out, but thankfully it was never over whether we could afford the doctor appointment.

Fast forwarding again to April 2016, my mom, brother, and I flew out to California and then drove cross country back to Maryland in my new truck a friend had given me for my 16th birthday.  Driving in New Mexico on the long stretch of Route 40 between Albuquerque and Amarillo, TX we were one of the first on the scene of a terrible accident.  A truck pulling a fifth-wheel horse trailer collided with an 18 wheeler. The trailer had unlatched and was on top of the truck which was on its side trapping the passengers inside. Pulling over, we jumped out and raced over to assist. I helped a stranger unload the horses and lead them to safety.  My mom crouched under the trailer speaking to the older woman trapped in the truck, only her hand and perfectly manicured fingers visible.  My brother was with those trying to reach the driver.  He witnessed the man convulse and struggle before going limp and passing away.  It took the emergency vehicles almost 30 minutes to arrive.  As the teams arrived we were asked to clear the area.  We drove the few miles to the first exit and went into the roadside souvenir shop to decompress.  The group of 4 military personnel who had also been on the scene had stopped there as well and were experiencing the same shocked feeling.  A news article I found online stated the older lady from Minnesota had gotten out and was okay, but her husband died on the scene.  A local horse farm took in the horses until she could arrange transport for them.  This accident brought to light how life can change in an instant, very far from home. I can only pray this woman had life insurance and auto insurance because the rest was so surreal she had so many other things to worry over.  My mom keeps life insurance to ensure we will be okay and safe.  I would love to believe my mom will live forever, but its comforting to know I’d be okay and I could care for my brother if she was gone.   And as for auto insurance … well, she has me covered there as well.  I am a good driver, but she is constantly reminding me I am 16 and accidents happen!

We don’t know what will happen tomorrow so we need to live for today.  We need to go after our dreams, play hard, and find reasons to smile and laugh every day. Insurance is the secret to living life without fear.

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