Animals are entities we encounter as subjects in a world of objects, but with whom we can have relationships and interactions beyond mere utility; the affection of a dog or similar pet, their importance in one’s life — these are beyond measurable quantification of significance. But there is a difference in the “other” species; of the immediacy of need, the lack of concern for tomorrow, and happiness determined by thoughts of future occurrences or predicted circumstances.
That difference is often what determines the linear intractability of human anxiety, as opposed to the fullness of joy seen in a dog or a cat. Dogs are happy because they are; the present immediacy of their satisfied lives is contained within the existential presence of the here and now. Worries about tomorrow, or next year; how will we get on with life? What is the meaning of… These are not tangible concerns which dogs and cats, or other similar species, concern themselves with.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition, such that the medical condition prevents one from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s job, those anxiety-filled question impacting future security come to the fore, and begin to haunt. But that life could be like that of a dog; yet, on the other hand, one need only visit the many animal rescue facilities to conclude that a dog’s life is not always a metaphor for endless joy.
For the Federal or Postal worker, filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether one is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, should have some weight of relief as an option for the future. It is, after all, a benefit which is part of one’s employment and compensation package, but one which is often not emphasized at the initial stages of one’s career. It provides for an annuity while allowing for employment outside of the Federal Sector, within certain guidelines and limitations.
During a time of medical need, the priority of concerns should always be: attend to one’s medical conditions; get through each day to the best extent possible; secure one’s future, including filing for OPM Disability Retirement benefits if one is a Federal employee or a U.S. Postal worker, as soon as the need becomes known.
For the Federal and Postal worker, such priority of circumstances is what determines the present and future happiness of one’s existence; for the dog, it is the second of the three which matters, but then, as long as the meal is served, and the after-dinner treat is offered, the wagging tail tells the tale of contentment at the end of a long day’s journey.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire