Medicare!

I celebrated my 65th birthday yesterday. Because I live outside the U.S. I have not decided whether or not I will sign up for Medicare Part B since I have no real plans to return to the U.S. for the foreseeable future. My husband has been “hounding” me a little because he is worried that I will miss my window and then be charged a penalty. Honestly, growing older was not supposed to be this difficult.

My Lila is 10 years old. I appreciate her and the changes she has been going through. I agree with her when she looks tentatively at a flight of stairs…her hesitation is like a question to me: can we please take the long path around the house. Most days, I comply. Today my knees feel good and I have been able to get up and down the stairs a few times without any real discomfort. I have put myself on a modest diet so that I can lose a bit of weight and take some of the pressure off the knees. I think we need to do what we can to preserve or improve our health. Who’s with me?

Getting back to the Medicare…since I have been receiving my benefits for 3 years already, I know that I am covered for the free Part A. The trick is to decide about Part B since it is about 10% of my modest monthly benefit. Even the SSA suggests not to pay for it if one is not thinking of returning to the U.S. since most countries that have granted us residency usually have plans to choose from. In my case, yes, I live in Costa Rica and do have access to decent medical care, even if I have to pay for it.

I have a couple of months to go before I have to pay a penalty but I guess I will have made up my mind by then. In the meantime, I will observe my dog, Lila, who lies at my feet unaware of the dilemmas that befall her human pets.

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