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AVM Survivors Network

A One Two Punch

Hey All,

Been a bad 36 hours over here…

First, I had an appt with my attorney yesterday morning to prepare for the meeting with certain people from the government. (BTW, does anyone know if the government can see what we talk about on here?)

We spent 4 hours, four extremely difficult and long hours, going over literally everything that I can and can not do as to how it relates to working a full time job - not necessarily what I used to do but pretty much any job. Guess what?

Yeah, I can’t do anything. According to the standards that they have, there is no type of job that I could do for 8 hours a day 5 days a week. I already knew that, so what’s the big deal?

I’m finding that I’ve been trying to pour it into a glass half full (or for our English friends, a pint half full) and look at the positive. If I didn’t, I don’t know how I could get out of bed every day. I would definitely be a candidate for inpatient mental health support. And I say that with all seriousness and with the knowledge that at least 5 of my friends kids and one of my nephews have been there.

Here is where it hit me with a full blown punch to the head that I hadn’t been expecting it would. By spending all of this time talking about all of these negative things, it reinforced that I was, well, purposefully delusional? I’ve been trying to put a good spin on things and more often, the balloon that cushioned the fall from these bad symptoms made the fall not as bad as it could. This popped that balloon so when I got to discussing things and how bad they were, I had no cushion to keep the bad things from hurting so much. (And my apologies to my favorite English professor, Prof. James VandenBosch, because I think I mixed my metaphors at least three times in that section.) But I’m not going to change them because this is me right now.

So I’m feeling like rather than making small dents in this great big mountain of woe, the mountain just let loose a nasty avalanche that might bury me (or might try is a better way to say it.)

How do you recover from that? How do you say, “look, all of the things that I’m dealing with, they are still there but they don’t own me, I own them.” I’m struggling today with a “post busy, post stress” hangover without the benefit of the beer and trying to wrap my arms and my damaged brain around it all. Any and all advice or input is welcome.

And then, I was hoping for a good night sleep last night but son (18, graduated from high school in May, musician, adopted from Haiti - he and are not the same skin color by any means) was supposed to be home by 10 (mutually agreed on time), well, let’s just say that he missed his curfew by 4 hours and thanks to the Find My Friends app on iphones, I was able to determine that he went to a city about 45 minutes away. A city with very high crime rates. A city where DWB is a violation that will get you, at best a ticket and and at worst, well, let’s just say that Driving While Black when you are in a tough town and you aren’t from around there can be really dangerous?

STOOPID

So, rather than getting 9 hours of sleep of sleep and starting today on a better note, I got about 5 hours and I felt like crap when I got up.

sigh

Why does this have to be so stinkin’ difficult?

TJ

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TJ, you certainly did take a couple of haymakers, but you’re still in the fight! You have an amazing way of expressing yourself, a true gift, and I understand. Of course the worry about a kid, and the lack of sleep makes the situation much more challenging. First off, I hope I don’t offend anyone, but you spent four hours with a lawyer? Holy smokes, that would be a monumental accomplishment for me! I realize it is all part of the process to hopefully be successful in the disability process, government and process are hand in hand. We always have to deal with The Department of Redundancy Department as well! I do see how a long discussion that you had would be disappointing , and I think exhausting. I hope you are able to get some rest, and re-charge those batteries. For me that is step one when I’m beat up, usually helps…other times it is time and support from family and friends, many who are here and understand me better than most. Take Care, John

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I looked at it from the perspective that I got disability but they deem me mentally impaired so my wife has to handle all of my money and big decisions but at the end of the day I have to suck it up and realize that my situation is better than pushing up daisies… life can throw you a big curve but the only choice I have is to deal with it and it’s better than the alternative…

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Hey TJ,
It can be very ‘in your face’ confronting having an assessment like that, but like you say you already knew the outcome. I know having that negative judgement made was a battle for me too. I was trying to get myself back to some sort of functional. Having someone say ‘You’re never going to make it’ gave me an odd feeling to be honest, I think that was because I knew it even if I didn’t want to acknowledge it. But to have it identified by others…YUCK. My ‘inner arrogance’ got the better of me “Well then I’ll show you…” and I pushed myself too far and fell into an emotional and physical pit of hell. You’ve had a day of shit and then you feel like shit and then wonder why??? That sounds like a real male sort of thing to do :smile:
It took me a while to climb out of that ‘pit’ and to a point I do still visit that ‘pit’ For me that’s where that acceptance thing sits. Some days I can accept OK, other days I fight like hell against it (But I’m fighting a losing battle). Eventually I had to knowledge all of this and it was ugly.
As for your son, he’s at that age. Pushing those boundaries, testing the limits, let’s be honest we all did it. I think its more that the boundaries have moved.

Merl from the Moderator Support Team

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@TJ127 Hello TJ I am sorry you had a rough 36 hrs and spending so much with a lawyer and going over all the stuff about out limitations is no fun! Even though we know all of it stating it all out loud esp to a stranger for some reason really sucks.
I just had to do the same last year when SSDI cut me off and had to hire an attorney and won my case back but still waiting to be paid…the gov!
speaking of the gov and if they can see this site I am not sure my husband does work for the gov and I know they can see social media like Facebook even if we have shut it down but not sure about sites like this. I really doubt it I bet they just look for FB and Instagram and Snap chat etc.
Hugs Angela

Angela - that’s what my attorney said. The day after my first appt with her (almost a year ago), I deactivated my FB account. Now interesting thing - you can still use FB Messenger with your friends even if your account is deactivated. My attorney lost a deal once for a client - because of FB - client was filing an appeal for disability benefits due to back problems. Social Security saw that he posted pictures of himself going canoeing and the time stamp of the pictures was the week before the hearing. So I had to cut that off. She did say that short of someone who is being actively and legally pursued for fraud, they won’t pay any attention to external boards like this. So I think we’re okay with that.

Thanks,

TJ

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Thank you. Thank you all for being exactly what I needed. I needed a hand back up and a pat on the back and someone to say, “You’re still standing.”

My brain is starting to shift from “this sucks” to “what can I make of this” mode again. It was trying to climb that mountain and got stuck and slid way back down the mountain. We’re semi-cleaned off and starting back up the mountain.

I’ll be glad when the next three weeks are over - even if I don’t know the answer yet, my part of the hearing will be done.

Merl - believe it or not, I was the typical “don’t get in trouble and keep peace with everyone” middle child. So I never did that stuff - maybe 30 minutes late, but not 4 1/2 hours late. Throw graduating from high school, the unknown about college and that, and then throw in some PTSD, BPD, ADHD and a good dose of trauma, well let’s just say parenting that alphabet soup is a bit of a challenge…

Thanks all!

TJ

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Hey TJ,
"I was the typical “don’t get in trouble and keep peace with everyone” middle child. So I never did that stuff "
Ohh you lucky %#@&*%, I was that kid that got the label of being ‘A shit of a kid’ I didn’t just push the boundaries, nahh, I smashed them to smithereens. I could write a thesis on all of the rules that had to be redefined due to me :wink: If there was a right way and a wrong way, I did it ALL the wrong way. My mother likes to use the excuse ‘…But there was a reason why…’ being my brain, but we didn’t know it at the time and Yea, there was a reason… …I was just a shit. Ohh man, was I a shit.

But in saying all of this I did learn from it all ie ‘DOH, don’t do that again’ and I’ve used those negatives as a positive in my role as a Youthworker and Disability worker 'Ahh don’t be doing that because I have and this is where it can lead…" Many of my clients have been told ‘NO’ and ‘Don’t’ by others but without explanation and often by social workers who have read it in a book. Mine comes from a lived experience and the explanations are real, not just theory. Some respected that.

One thing about that alphabet soup is that it ain’t just his bowl but yours too that gets added to the mix. Often what the fossils (parents) tell us doesn’t register 'cos their information is all from the dark ages, back when the dinosaurs roamed. It’s not until they make their own mistakes that they often realise ‘Ohh so that’s what they were talking about…’ in some cases you have to live it to learn it.
Here’s a link to a song that I often used to use as an educational tool both for clients and staff. It still reminds me of things today.

TJ, the internet can be a great tool. But it is still the Wild, Wild West (WWW). Some people don’t realise this. All data is logged somewhere and for those with nefarious intent (especially govt) it can be a goldmine. Hence the use of pseudonyms (recommended) and tools such as VPN’s. Even in using such tools/methods things can still be lined up, but Farcebook and Google is well known for selling personal information, so a BIG dose of caution is required. My wife’s been online searching travel options, then asks “Why am I getting all of these adverts/pop ups for airlines and hotels?” and I’ve told her ‘It all gets logged somewhere’.

Merl from the Moderator Support Team

That is probably the second best commencement speech I’ve ever heard. I love it!

The best?

“Never, never, never give up” by Winston Churchill

There is so much of how you described yourself that remind me of my older brother (also a preacher’s kid who grew up to become a preacher.) I still remember doing homework in my bedroom and listening to him and my parents argue over what I thought were really stupid things. :wink:

My kids and my nephews like to here stories about Uncle Joe almost as much as they did about Grandpa in college. A middle kid who did cause a lot of problems. Fortunately none of them were actually illegal (or so i’m Told.)

TJ

“Fortunately none of them were actually illegal…”
Ohh some of mine were, in fact I left NZ, with a hangman’s noose just above my head. Going through immigration I was waiting for the line from Monopoly “Go Directly to Jail. Do not pass ‘Go’. Do not collect $200.” :smile: Was a real ‘Phew’ moment when I passed on through Australian immigration, mind you, I’ve never returned to NZ to test those boundaries again. ‘Why tempt fate’ I say :wink:
But since being in Australia I’ve been a ‘Good boy’, well, not as much of a ‘shit’ as I was in NZ. Let’s just say ‘I’ve matured’ (a little anyway) :slight_smile:

Merl from the Moderator Support Team

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