One Huge Stress Relieved

I haven’t mentioned it here, but a few months ago I received a letter and questionnaire from the Social Security Administration stating that they are reviewing my medical condition. If they decide to go to the next step I would have to see a doctor of their choosing to keep my benefits.

It completely freaked my shit out.

This happened right after I bought my car and I’d been feeling as if I were in a remission of sorts for the past 9 months or so. The vertigo had not hit hard in close to a year and when it did I had warning signs so I knew when it was going to happen, so driving was once again possible. I was able to clean my house, go on short grocery shopping trips alone, go to some appointments by myself….I felt a new sense of independence. (as long as I wasn’t having debilitating migraines but that’s not what I was found disabled for) We had just recently moved to Tucson and I had a number of stressors that came with that move, add on this worry and I crashed! Not only did I crash physically, I crashed mentally, and I wasn’t even sure if I should get better if that meant I’d loose my disability and Medicare.

This past month I simply stopped thinking about it, well mostly, and I focused on getting back to a good normal level for me. I want to get into that remission state again, but if that doesn’t happen, I’m hoping for a better normal than I have right now, and I think I’m headed that way. I’d like to say I’d just accept how I am and be okay with it if that’s how it turned out, but I think I’d have to go through the whole process of grieving again to get there. Mindfulness is hard, that’s why we must be gentle with ourselves.

Do I blame the Social Security Administration for my flare, in part, yes! I believe this flare was caused by an accumulation of the stress I’ve been under over the past many months. The review of my disability benefits pushed that stress even higher. I felt like I shouldn’t be better, that I might have to prove I’m still as sick as I was at the time of my hearing to a doctor of their choosing. How is that fair?

I won’t defend why I deserve disability assistance here, I did that to a judge and a room full of people who were all trying to find a reason that I was not disabled. This post is simply to point out just how broken this system is.

I get letters saying they have good news that I can possibly get training to work and I may still be able to keep my benefits after I am employed. That sounds great doesn’t it? But then when I took the time to read it in it’s entirety I found out that if I make over a certain amount I would not only get my benefits cut I would also lose Medicare even if I could not get healthcare. I’d also have to see that doctor they chose to make sure I’m still disabled before I could start training for a job. There’s some great incentive for people to actually do that isn’t it? I’d love to try to learn something new and work some, but only if I could keep my healthcare, and I do not want to see their doctor first. That’s just scary. I should not have to do that over and over. If they want to review my case, they should ask MY doctor. That is the only voice that should be allowed to say if my condition has changed. Not a doctor of their choosing.

When I’m not flaring I don’t feel as ill as I did during the time I applied for SSDI, however, there is no way I could hold down a job. Not that I don’t want to. I’d love to be able to work. My hearing, or lack there of, and my physical limitations do not allow me to hold a job of any sort that I am at all qualified for, or any other that I know of. Now, why do I feel I need to defend myself even to you, my friends who know what my life is like, and know that holding a job would put me at risk of always being in a flare? Why do I feel ashamed that I have to depend on the government to help me? For anyone to help me? I believe working helped stabilize my moods. When my mind and body are more engaged then my mental health is more stable. Of course, I’d like to work again, who wouldn’t given the circumstances?

I do wish I’d seen this; 10 Facts About Disability Review, before I got so very stressed out. I would have still been stressed, but not quite as much.

A few days ago I received a 2nd letter saying they were not going to further review my case. It’s all good. At least for now, they could decide to review it again, but for now, everything is as it should be. I just forgot to mention that little bit in the original post. duh.

I’d love to know….Are you on disability? Has your case been reviewed? What happened?

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11 thoughts on “One Huge Stress Relieved

    1. doesn’t that happen happen every time we try to comment on something long?
      It’s all good here. I left out that I got a second letter and they aren’t going to pursue the medical evaluation.
      I guess my answers to their questions were enough.
      I feel so stupid to have left that out.
      I’ve been struggling with this for months.
      I’ve missed you.
      I hope all is as well as possible with you. xoxo

      Like

  1. Rita McGregor

    I was on SSDI until I turned 66 and was eligible for regular SS. I didn’t realize that they automatically switched me over to SS. Nothing changed. I was on SSDI for 14 years and never came up for an evaluation, but you know it can happen at any time. It was a relief to be switched over to regular SS. I could almost feel the panic rising in me while I read about your evaluation. They must have to be informed of what has gone on and your limitations and other doctor evaluations, etc, don’t they? Of course, it’s the government. I hope it all goes well and much easier than you expect. I was lucky. Stress sets me off terribly, too. Physically and emotionally.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I did go through a huge scare and a LOT of stress that completely messed me up, but I forgot to add to the post that I did receive a second letter saying they were not going to pursue the medical evaluation. I can’t believe I left that part out. I guess the stress factor was on my mind more than the relief. But boy is it a relief. Thank you for caring. I look forward to when mind switches over to regular SS.

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  2. Wendy,

    It is absolutely ridiculous that they do this, what a waste of time and energy and money all around. Like how do they think your life has changed? It is with you forever and you will have good and bad days. I would gather all the information from your old Drs etc if you don’t already have them and find a good lawyer in that area just in case. I applied and went thru it, it was horrible and not only that, the DR’s were not the best in the field. I understand how emotional it is just just breathe and hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Patricia, I completely flubbed and left it off that I did just receive a second letter saying that they are not pursuing the medical evaluation. Thank goodness. All is good. I’m just a duffus. but it was very stressful and scary….and I feel so stupid that I messed up the post like that. duh.

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  3. I do think stress can be a huge cause and factor of flares, and although it can’t always be helped no matter how hard we try to not great stressed, worries over finances and jobs are (in my opinion) often the worse. Eugh what a headache and more worries since getting the initial review letter, but I’m glad at least things are settled for now with no further review. Breeeathe, work on keeping yourself as level as possible now that’s out of the way. And you don’t need to justify anything here, a lot of us, myself included, will be in a similar boat with health that’s caused us to lose jobs and not work a typical job, at least for the time being. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are one of the few people who knew about this since I vented on your blog once, you were very kind then and now..
      Always.
      I do feel like a great weight is lifted off me. I went through a gradual process of leaving the work force. First less hours, then new job, then part time….finally I was out of work for a long time then tried to go back and lasted 3 days. I did not want to be disabled. I understand that the government has to do these reviews to keep those few who abuse the system to stop, but it’s so stressful for those of us who don’t.
      BTW, I dont know why but a few of you comments went to spam, weird right? I found 2 today. I havent been ignoring you or blocking you I promise.
      xoxo Wendy

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly, you don’t want to be disabled. You want to be able to work. I get that feeling, I’ve felt awful since losing my job, too. Being in a position where you have to admit to yourself you can’t work, well, it’s awful. Systems set to help those who need it do need to be reviewed because too many abuse them, but as you say, for those who genuinely need it there are often too many hoops, too many unfair decisions (we get that a lot in the UK, people who are so sick and can’t even walk get denied disability benefit, which is ridiculous), too much stress.
        It’s weird re: comments, I’ve had this happen on a lot of blogs now. For some reason seems to have a massive hate-on for me at the moment! 😦
        Caz xx

        Liked by 1 person

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