Friday, April 9, 2010

Where Do I Go From Here?

You know you are over the hill when instead of wanting a resume of your achievements, they want a resume of all your illnesses and injuries. They want to have the cause and proof of your PTSD, rather than your success at keeping yourself out of addiction and despair.

They ask you to describe in detail every blow you have received from life and to promote your victimhood rather than your recovery and health.

After a half hour telephone interview the other day with my worker at Social Security, I was reduced to a quivering and helpless old lady.

In the past, at job interviews I extolled my talents and accomplishments in order to get the job (make money). Now I have to complain about all my aches and pains to get the disability insurance (make money). It was a real shock, believe me.

Something is very wrong with all this.

It occurred to me that I am tired of trying to convince anyone of anything. Take me as I am without the bragging or the excuses. This, to me, is the mark of my gained wisdom. But it will not get me anything in this world of skewed values.

If, 20 years ago after I was nearly beaten to death, stalked, forced to hide out in a battered women's shelter... I had become a drug addict, homeless person, felon, or alcoholic, I could have gotten more out of the system than I have as a person who has always sought wellness and wholeness.

Geez, by now I could have written a book about all my travails and gotten a movie contract. Instead, my intelligence has only served to make me 'over-qualified' for most jobs and envied by my fellow employees at others. Now, I have to use my intelligence to try to figure out what they need me to say to get disability. Pathetic!

What kind of world is this that rewards victimhood, crime and addiction? And where a person who has had the excuse to fall apart on many occasions has instead opted to stand up and try one more time, only to find out that falling apart pays better.