March 29, 2019

In January 2019, Health Partners Free Clinic started a new series of weekly Facebook posts. Fashioned after Humans of New York, every Wednesday morning the Clinic profiles a patient, volunteer, community member, etc., associated with Health Partners. In line with our mission of holistic health, the hope is to not only invite our followers into our world, but also to help open our eyes a little bit more to the intricacies of life for those in our sphere of love. Each week will be a different topic, journey, and hopefully learning experience.  Here are just some of those stories.

“If you want to hear the most interesting thing about me, um, eh, man, well see, one of the reasons I’m always hesitant about this kind of event, because it’s always hard for people to believe. I came up in the Jehovah’s Witness religion, and one of the things I was led to believe was uh, that God don’t communicate to people. And one time, well twice, God has came to me in words, and um, I was surprised…I was driving down 41, and I was surprised I didn’t jump out the car…And to make a long story short, I ended up getting ten years in prison, and um, but during that conversation with God he told me I was going to prison. And during that time, I had an understanding, through reading and through meditating, that God wasn’t a punisher; we all punish ourselves through our thoughts, our words, and our actions. And I learned so much being in prison, to the point where I learned that rehabilitation starts from birth, it’s already in your heart. Rehabilitation doesn’t exist in prison, it exists within the individual. I learned that we are on this earth to help people grow, not hurt one another, but help one another, in every way possible. I learned…that God had me prepared for prison in my teens because I was going in-and-out of jail, in-and-out of jail, in-and-out of jail, so by the time I got to my teen years, I knew everybody. I even knew Jo Ann (HPFC’s NP). Ya’ know. But then I had an understanding why God say don’t judge…because [life] is a learning process all over. And all we are trying to do is get back where we came from, which is uh, being spiritual. Don’t nobody teach us to love, but you are being taught negative things, you are being taught to hate…I learned there is no such things as accidents, coincidence or luck. All things are meant. God works in mysterious ways… Goodness is in everybody, we just got to soul search ourselves and remove a lot of animosity, remove a lot of that hatred, and just be true to ourselves. We are all one with God.”

“I grew up in Piqua. I joined the military, signed up in 2012. Shipped out 2013. Kind of lived as normal life as you can in the military: two full deployments, a failed marriage, kind of a big bundle of crap that just stirred itself up in those years. I, uh, made horrible life choices towards the end, was a real bad alcoholic, started doing heavy drugs when I went on leave. Military kicked me out while I was in jail. All my bills stacked up, ya know. I lost my insurance, my VA benefits, pretty much everything I had going for me…I got the help I needed as far as counseling, mental health. All the things I was always against. The military made it seem like you don’t need that, ya know, “shut up, suck it up, and move on.” I had horrible coping skills… And right now, I’m working for very little money, but I’m still providing for myself, getting back on my feet, staying sober. I actually ended up going to Miami County Recovery Council to do an evaluation, and uh, they recommended me try the free clinic here, which actually, I figured all places you have to have money upfront, or something. But coming here helped me get back on the meds that level me out, keep me sane. I actually really appreciate it, really means a lot, coming here and someone’s actually willing to help, cause I’ve been struggling on my own for a long time…it’s hard to reach out, and it’s hard to accept help from people…I guess my views are changing as my life changes.”


“I got married when I was eighteen. And if I wouldn’t have got married when I was eighteen, I would not have had my daughter. But, eh, I wish that I would have been smarter when I was young to know what kind of family that I would be marrying-into. I was, ya know, if I had been smarter, and had the, um, the knowledge that I do now, and through the many years, I would have really stepped back and thought about, ‘Well, how was he raised? And how was, ya know, how do they view…or how does that family view the importance of, ya know, loyalty and stuff?’. I would have probably changed the direction or the course of my life. I’m sorry I’m crying… But having my child was the best experience of my life, it was probably the best. It’s just the greatest gift. Human life, ya know, it’s just the greatest gift…that was this huge accomplishment to me, I didn’t think I’d ever be able to have a child.”


“Scariest health experience for me had to be In October of 2018, my husband was having a heart attack early in the morning when I woke up. Totally, unexpected. Never thought he was a candidate for that. And, um, just not knowing what to do, where to go, but knowing I had to do it.; ‘cause he’d been sitting there for four hours thinking about it. Um, so I called the EMTS, and, they were fantastic. Took it from there. We ended up at (the hospital), and I couldn’t be more surprised, shocked, or pleased. Everything worked out good.”



“At a recent hospital stay for my breathing problems, I was told I couldn’t follow up with my primary care doctor because of some past bills that hadn’t been fully paid. I left with five days worth of medicine and was told to find someone to follow up with. My symptoms of course got worse again. I was told to go to Health Partners by a friend; she said they would take care of me. At Health Partners I felt very embraced, cared about, heard, and taken care of. I ended up there due to desperation. I didn’t feel like I could get help anywhere else. And so I came there for assistance and left with medications that allowed me to breath, get back to work, ha, get out of bed. And um, so like I said, I came in desperate, and felt embraced, heard, understood, and taken care of.”



“When I came here I got diagnosed with diabetes first, then came the rheumatoid arthritis, and they helped me get in to the rheumatologist. The arthritis had been misdiagnosed by another doctor. If it wasn’t for this place, I’d probably not survive. Cause um, I mean, they have helped me so much with medicines and, and stuff. So, ya, it wouldn’t be good if it wasn’t for this place…I’m going to try and not get emotional, but it’s just, I’ve known this people for a lot of years, and it’s kinda’ bittersweet that Dr. Hess is leaving, cause he’s been there, ya know, he and Deb Miller, and uh, it’s kind of like a family type thing here. There’s some really great people here.”


“Till about two years ago, my wife had held health coverage for us for over 37 years. So, I have never been in this position. I don’t know what it’s like. I’m gonna tell ya, it’s not good. I’ve seen coworkers and friends lose their homes, their jobs and everything, because of hospitalization. And, I understand the clinic can’t provide everything for me; all the test, pay all my bills. But eh, in these last two years, just to go see a regular physician, do all the tests that they want, this, that and the other, it’s just slowly draining us, to where all our savings are gone. I’m in a position where I had to cancel my doctor’s appointment because I can’t, I don’t have the money to have these tests done that he wants me to do. So, that being said, I was sitting around talking to some friends and they had mentioned that they come here, and that it really helped them out. And, uh, I did not want to come here. I’m just going to tell ya. I’m very uncomfortable. Uh, I like to pay my own bills, I have all my life. But, you reach a point…where you need some help if you don’t have coverage, and even sometimes when you do have coverage…It just comes very highly recommended to me. There’s a lot of other people in this county that could use your services…But there is a reason it’s free; you have to participate in your care. Some people just don’t want to do it. But I’m willing to do whatever it takes. And uh, the fact that you can have blood drawn here, I mean, that’s the reason I couldn’t go to my family physician anymore. And the physicians are overwhelmed as well, I realize that…I just don’t think my physician had time for me and the medicines I need. I was just looking for another avenue, something to just stay afloat, so I don’t lose my job, don’t lose my home. I’m just very grateful.”

“At first I had insurance and then I switched jobs, and I, uh, went and got the new insurance from my new job, and found out the doctor I had been seeing for 15 years didn’t accept it. So then I lost my doctor. And then I ended up having to cancel my insurance cause it wasn’t doing no good; it was too expensive cause I work at a small company, and I couldn’t find a doctor without going to Cincinnati. I just run into health problems, and no insurance. And I heard by word of mouth, you guys might be able to help me out. So, eh, I guess I come down and talked to somebody at the office here and made an appointment. It wasn’t too long after that you guys gave me an appointment, and then a follow-up right after that. I have paid for insurance my whole life, and now I need it and it’s not there. I have always been healthy, outdoorsy, always moving. But now I’m 49 and some issues are just starting to come up that I need help with.”