Here’s a letter I want to send to the Social Security Administration along with my application for SSDI. Obviously I haven’t sent it yet. Tell me what you think? I know it’s kind of long but any feedback is greatly appreciated.
To Whom It May Concern:
I am trying to get SSDI. I had surgery in October of 2006 to remove an Arterial Venous Malformation (AVM) located in my cerebellum next to the brain stem. The surgery was deemed successful and the AMN was removed 100% however, as a result of the surgery I have double vision (which has not improved since the surgery), dizziness (the cerebellum is the center of balance), some minor facial palsy (I look like I had a stroke) and numbness at first in my right hand and leg. The numbness has since (in the last two years) increased to my left hand. I can drive with my prism glasses but have been told I have no business on any two-wheeled vehicles (so there went the motorcycle and the mountain bike). My typing speed (though better than it was after the surgery) is only 12 wpm (it was 40+ wpm before the surgery) and I’m very slow at just about everything.
At the time of the surgery I was employed by Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation (TG) and was placed on long-term disability through Hartford. In February of 2007, TG let me go to “help getting the long-term disability”. I did go before an Administrative law judge in 2009 and was awarded social security benefits (from lawyers provided by Hartford) for the period of April 2007 through December 2007 but that went back to Hartford in the form of an overpayment and they even wanted money from my daughter as a dependant. In the meantime, Hartford hired a private investigator, came to my house, showed me that they did video surveillance on me pushing a cart at the grocery store and said I was no longer disabled and would stop disability payments. This also happened in 2009. It was all so surreal.
Since then I have tried to work in a deli at a grocery store (part-time), as a census worker for the 2010 census, back at TG on a phone queue (was terminated because I did not meet financial goals for the month of November – again I was very slow), and finally from home as a healthcare IT scheduler (3 month contract job – contract ended after one month). With each job, I still threw up about once a week (sometimes more) before I went to work and because of my slower speed (typing, etc.), I can’t seem to hold down a job.
While back at TG, they provided health insurance and I immediately had an MRI done (2010) but the AVM did not return. I also visited with a neurologist (2010) to try to explain the increasing numbness I was experiencing and they ordered a nerve test that showed nothing. Also at the advice of the neurologist, I had an MRI on my neck and spine and that showed nothing as well.
During a period of unemployment I was also denied Medicaid. I am seeing a doctor for health care right now but it is completely at my expense and I haven’t seen a neurologist since 2010.
Right now I’m living with my aging parents (I’m 46) to save money and looking for another job just to get health benefits and I’m on emergency unemployment. It’s not like I’m not educated. I have both a BBA and an MBA (earned online after the surgery) along with a high work ethic combined with my ability to drive and that seems to land me jobs. Problem is I can’t seem to keep them. This whole journey has been both a financial and emotional drain and I just want to contribute again. What else should I do?
Thanks again for any and all feedback.