It’s not something I’m allowed to admit very often, even to myself. But I went to the “Ticket to Work” office today and had a meeting with a very nice guy. So it’s not his fault, really. He thought I was just great. A real inspiration to people who didn’t have half the problems I did who sat and complained how hard their lives were.
So he sent me to another office, the Occupational Rehabilitation Center, so I can be re-trained to a job that cannot make more than $700.00 a month for the first sixth months if I am to keep my SSDI and Medicare (less than $2,000.00 for myself and my daughter, plus Medicare only covers me) There was other money mumbo-jumbo that basically ensures that people with disabilities trying to get off SSI or SSDI will stay poor, but that, amazingly enough, is not what started me down this path of unhappiness. It is the thought that I have to be re-trained.
I have two BAs, an MSW, and I’m about to be trained to do data entry or stuff envelopes. Maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll be able to answer phones. But I’ll never be a counselor again. I’m so much more than this. Or I used to be. This feels so degrading, and I can hear my sisters telling me they don’t care, because it is something I have to do, but they do something meaningful with their lives. They have important jobs. One of them has two wonderful boys. The other works for Harvard, and she is helping me now.
I’m so grateful for my sisters’ help, but I feel incredibly guilty. I always thought I should apologize to them. I was born and they must have known they’d be stuck with me like- forever. But, I didn’t want that. Sorry doesn’t help, does it? I want to change it. I’d do anything to change it.
You see, I was brought up almost like I didn’t have a disability. No one around me had one; the issue came up, I’m not saying it didn’t, but my family’s expectations of me were the same as they were for my sisters. Part of me is sad today because I did go to college and graduate school, got married, had a child, and worked in several different jobs. Because.
Because now I am alone and I have no job, the child is still with me, but she sees me in pain, or wiped out because of medication. She remembers when I worked. I don’t. I want to get so much done that I can’t seem to finish. How can I do anything to make a difference when it hurts to move?
I do know I won’t be unhappy, or as unhappy tomorrow, I also know even if I stayed this unhappy, euthanasia wouldn’t be the answer. Why? Because I very well may be depressed. Usually we send depressed people to, oh, I don’t know, MSWs counselors. If people are disabled or diagnosed as terminally ill. 4 states in the US (with more debating it) they can kill themselves with a doctors prescription. If people do not live in WA, MO, OR, or VE, they can go to Switzerland. They don’t require you to be terminal (just having MS or Schizophrenia will do) they do require you to get your own doctor to sign off on it.
Why are we OK with this? Not just OK- we have snappy names like “Dying with Dignity“. If people are not disabled, we get them mental health, maybe put them in a mental hospital. But only if they are physically worthwhile? This. too. makes me unhappy. I feel alone and worthless tonight, but is this really how the world views me?