The “what ifs” of life tend to predominate; then, from the deep recesses of brute carnality, where evolutionary Darwinism remains wired in the DNA of a time when civilizations were yet to flourish, and where tea cups were merely in the imaginations of more genteel souls, a sense of uprightness, fortitude and strength of inner character dawns, and we walk out the door refreshed with a sense of deliberative purpose. But it turns out that such fleeting flourishes of fortuitous firmness lasts but for a twilight, and then we desire to crawl back into the womb of our former skeletal selves.
Fear is how most of us live, despite the outward face of bravado and confidence. We fear what others might do to us; how the economy is a mysterious force over which we have no control; of deteriorating health; of life itself.
Then, there are days when a calm sense of overconfidence prevails; without any reason or rationale, or perhaps we watched a movie or television show where a certain character manifested a bright and hopeful sunshine of unperturbed calm; but that was yesterday, and lasted but for a fortnight of winks and nods. For the remaining days, we recognize that it was all an act; and so we live in trembling and fear.
For the Federal employee and U.S. Postal worker who suffers from a medical condition, such that the medical condition begins to impact the Federal or Postal employee’s ability and capacity to perform the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal position, that placement on the spectrum between fear and overconfidence is well know, recognized, and familiar as the warmth of a mother’s caress.
What the agency will do; what coworkers conspire; what the next news of the deteriorating medical condition; these all fall in favor of the “fear” side of the spectrum. Those “other” things which call for confidence in the future over and beyond — they come in a spatter of popping grease, and make us wince with the momentary pause of a tap of reality, and then disappear.
How does one escape that spectrum of unrelenting reminders? For the Federal employee and U.S. Postal worker, there is always the option of filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Obtaining a Federal Disability Retirement annuity is not merely a benefit to be gained; rather, it is an opportunity to take the next step in life, to a beyond where future career and vocation choices may allow for productivity outside of the Federal Sector.
Thus, for the Federal or Postal worker who is under FERS, CSRS or even CSRS Offset, preparing, formulating and filing for an effective OPM Disability Retirement application is the first step towards taking a turn away from the treadmill of that dreaded pinpoint of our lives, where we are stuck in the middle of the spectrum between fear and overconfidence.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire