Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Why I'm dismayed...

... yesterday, today, and (quite probably) tomorrow.


My primary agrees, I am disabled. Not as much as initial reports had cautiously warned my wife I would be. I don't dribble saliva unwanted, my eyes track like normal, other than the scars on my forearms no marks. If you don't talk to me, or shuck up my sleeves, I look normal.

But I am

Where the significant disability comes into play is.... my psychology. In thought, many times, I forget that I even had the accident. I've got little, or no, memory of the event I was attending. Zero memory of the accident, completely. Sometimes my brain will be zipping along unhindered and than >BAM< I remember.

I try to interact with you people, everybody else, and it becomes apparent to me as I try. In my own head I am reflecting on my behavior and thinking "OMG, what an idiot!?!" It is in behavior that I have been significantly reduced as a person. In many ways I have been reduced to a teenager. Impulse control, social awareness, even language is not under my control as is expected of a grown man.

However, if you ask Social Security if I am disabled they will tell you no. Apparently going to war for this government is all fine and dandy when the bullets are flying but when you need your government to have your back - "Tough luck sucker"!

This is where my disability becomes apparent. I still suffer some Aphasic moments and this is complicated in the workplace. Heck, just one aspect of my personality (before accident) is a workplace complication at times. I am a Gentleman. I want to be a "gentle" man but if you are not careful you may realize how ungentle I really am.

Sadly, in some aspects of our society (Lifetime channel is a good place to point) being a "gentleman" is flirtatious. It is also deceitful among the many other "flaws" of masculine aspects. Combine respectful by nature with Aphasia and life gets complicated. A fine example is my recent attempt to rejoin the workplace via Home Depot. In retrospect, I had no reason to be grateful to a co-worker (female) however expressing inadvertent gratitude gave her a sexual harassment compliant.

Did I offer or ask? No, but that has nothing to do with "complaint" from a woman. Apparently, our legal environment is only concerned with the possibility of complaint, not the validity, to create drama and financial woes. And that is just one aspect of my disability in the workplace.

However Social Security, AMERICA the land of the free and the brave, sent me a rejection letter for my claim. I think it is a rejection letter. On the phone, via voice, I was totally rejected. I got a letter to that effect however I have not opened that letter. I got it 1 year ago, in fact. I realize that it is not for me to open that letter. That is for my attorney to do.

That is the next aspect of my disability. Today I am going to look at getting one here locally. As I am not from New England, I have little resources or history to work with in this regard. I've asked my brother, who is in the legal profession, for guidance but alas I have not gotten any. However a good friend of mine (about my age and another Desert Storm Veteran) has some recent legislative experience and I am going to go with his suggestion. "Word of mouth" after all... ...

However I am dismayed by how many ways society has abandoned me. I'm a veteran, who has not been seen by his VA doctor in a year. I'm a freemason, who is considered of ill worth because my psychology is not as staid and stuffy as the other guys (anymore) and that my financial wallet is not as open as it used to be. I'm male, and the list of problems associated with that grows daily - ask any female misanthrope. (Who are more common then they themselves realize.)
I am dismayed and disabled.

Saturday, July 5, 2014


... I need.

One of my problems is I can't slow down my thoughts however I have lost the ability to do proper follow through. Or, put like this, I have become the equivalent of a 7 yr old. Impulsive as crazy but dedicated to little.

This means, there are a lot of plans and activities that I have thought through, in detail. Sometimes I ask questions and do things to test the waters of my plans. However, something shiny or flashy will enter my attention and there I go... off like a Magpie chasing it down.

This behavior is disruptive to my finances and my marriage. Finances, easy to understand. Marriage, with a strong, organized, powerful woman as my partner how can being married to a Magpie NOT frustrate and annoy the hell out of her. She stands by my side, without question, however how can I not feel pain watching her love & commitment be tested.

I've tried turning around me for shoulders to lean upon but so far only one shoulder has proven to be sufficient. My church, God bless them, has striven to be that shoulder yet there are memories coming out of me that I should not share with them. They don't think about such things and many of them has never even been close these things. American Legion or the Disabled American Veterans, always there however like my church - things they should not have to worry about. Even the state of New Hampshire has fallen short of the mark: Krempels Center, an organization of con artists, and a couple other brain injury support groups has tried but one qualification necessary to understand is a qualification that "normals" discriminate against.

Veterans of Foreign Wars has proven to be sufficient. It is a place where people gather together to help each other where they can. Help each other to bear memories that are very heavy. Irony being, like prize fighters, old soldiers deal with brain injury on the regular. After "x" number of explosions, "x" number of parachute crashes... errr... landings, "x" number of mild, or severe, concussions, where does the "brain injury survivor" badge gets put on that chest as a medal?

As an example, this is an example of how much thinking I do. I've thought these things many times but each time I start I forget that I've thought about it. Until about now...

And just about now comes the realization that, for the most part, none of you gives a damn.

I think that is what bothers me about being gracious to the gratitude expressed by civilians. I feel damned awkward when someone thanks me for my service. Why awkward? Because I refrain from asking them how do they show that thanks? Voting on worthwhile Veteran issues? Nah, that would dip into my pocket! Nah, that would require effort and thought! It is much better to just say the words "Thank you for your service" and dismiss you out of hand as if you were part of the wait staff. A waiter who does not even get a tip!