To my colleagues in Congress: I have MS. Don’t make my insurance unaffordable.

A year later, I am no longer in Congress, and my future health care is uncertain. I am not employed, and I pay $800 a month for my COBRA coverage, which ends in June 2018. I’m not sure what I’ll do then. My medication, which has thankfully halted the progression of my MS, costs roughly $73,000 a year. I’ve had three sets of MRI scans and will require one each year to check my progress; that’s roughly $7,000 each. I admit, I do not completely understand all of the bills. It’s very confusing.

Unlike some of you, I am not wealthy. When I was younger, I had the experience of not having health insurance, and I almost lost my home after landing in the emergency room. One reason I ran for Congress was to help make sure no one would have to go through that, and I was proud to be one of the presiding officers when the Affordable Care Act passed. I did not think the law was perfect; I believed it was a good start. I never thought I could have to go back to a time when I would not have health-care coverage.

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