Spring comes and we clean out old hoardings, discard past articles once thought to be valuable and inseparable from our identity; or perhaps what pop culture has deemed a justifying course of decision-making because there is an inevitable “mid-life crisis“, or some other equally biologically-driven, primordial determinism which compels one to act in one way, as opposed to another.
Life’s alterations are often considered with no greater thought than having the local tailor shorten the seams, or tuck in the waist, like face-lifts and other procedures which attempt to beautify an otherwise insufferable soul. But in the end, it is always the innocent ones who suffer; it is well that children possesses greater than indexes of fragile psyches; otherwise, the emergency rooms of hospitals across the country would be attending to them around the clock. But with euphemisms and a can of fresh paint, we may still remain viable cores as stellar pillars in the community; it was a “friendly divorce”; the kids are “better off”; and other such platitudes to justify the devastation wrought. But some alterations in the cycle of life cannot be attributed to fault; they are, indeed, brought about by fate, nature, will and the indifference of a mechanical universe.
Medical conditions tend to be in that category; they force alterations in life’s choices, without a deliberative involvement on the part of the participant. For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who recognize that he or she suffers from a medical condition, such that the medical condition prevents one from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s positional duties at the U.S. Postal Service or a Federal agency, it may be time to consider filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits through the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. For, while the medical condition itself may indeed be a life-altering circumstance, it is what you do, how you react, and what affirmative steps you take, which will determine in the end whether you allow for the tumult of fate to rock and roll you without oars up the proverbial creek of life.
Filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, is a way to steady the unsteadiness, to steer where once you traveled directionless, and to secure a future where once uncertainty prevailed. While the process itself is a long and arduous bureaucratic morass, the direction once taken allows for a compass to prevail, and a path to be taken.
Federal Disability Retirement is a benefit accorded and offered to all Federal and Postal employees with the minimum of 18 months of Federal Service, and should be considered if and when life’s alterations have determined that a change is necessary; and like the tailor who skillfully makes the suit or dress fit more eloquently upon a body forced into disquietude through years of untended gardening, so applying for a benefit to secure one’s future is merely to respond wisely to the unexpected vicissitudes of life’s offering.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire