Wednesday, May 15, 2013

A quick reminder that I'm not well

The VA contacted me recently by snail mail and told me that my claim for disability was under review. Well that's just peachy. Then I got a letter stating that I'd have a bunch of appointments to verify if I am in fact in need eligible. Understandable. What I had not prepared for is the trip to that particular office.

I am pretty much afraid to leave my house somedays. Brings out my completely illogical fears of being unable to make it back to my home. Despite my constant search for a job I really dread going to them because I don't like getting lost. I swear by Google Maps. If I find a place to be inaccessible I'm not going there. So you can imagine my freakishly out of proportion reaction to getting lost on the way to my first appointment.

First off there were at least four ways of getting to this location by bus. I left with plenty of time to make it there and I even choose the best route (the one with the least amount of connections). I left at nine for an eleven AM meeting. The traffic was fairly light and I'm expecting this to be an easy trip.

What I did not plan for is the grossly inaccurate distance I had to walk. Normally I like walking, just not on the side of the road. I also like nature too, not up close and personal like the snake I encountered on said side of the road. The same goes for the mud I slipped in or that soccer mom that almost rolled over me.

Like any person with anxiety issues I panicked. While the road continued the buildings became more sparse and then completely disappeared. I found myself on an empty road with woods around me, highway flowers, a big ass snake and those huge red ant you only read about in National Geographic Magazines. Looking at my watch I saw that I was late and I feared that if I missed this appointment I'd be automatically disqualified. I'm not going to say I don't need the money. I had to make this meeting and walking down a road that seemed to go on forever without any signs of civilization scared the shit out of me.

I became this sniveling hysterical creature I haven't seen in ages, inconsolable, begging for help that wasn't there and desperately wanting to go home. I really had no choice but to keep walking. So I walked and cried, imagining my body being eaten by carrion birds. I pictured my dog slowly baking to death in my empty apartment. No one would come looking for me because I'd managed to alienate everyone local because of my reclusive tendencies. I'd sort of die on this empty road.

When I finally found the building out in the middle of nowhere I was too tired to even be happy that I arrived. I wanted to go home. I didn't feel safe even if I manage to get back to civilization. I didn't want all these people staring at me. I was covered in mud, there was a snake, I was late, I failed to help myself and now everyone knew it.

Someone took pity on me and I was able to meet with the person assigned to assess me. She was coincidently the person there to my mental health. How oddly convenient. She asked me how have I handled my anxiety, then answer for me because I was still upset. It went something like, I have changed my behavior so much to avoid situations where my anxiety will be triggered.

Well there is a way to look at that. I wonder if that's what she wrote down? After my morning the day pretty much went smoothly. I made my next appointment and even donated plasma today. I am pretty tired and my legs hurt. I am glad to be home though. Things make so much sense here. The noise outside is sort of comforting. Even the chickens are welcome to me right now.

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