Thursday, September 20, 2007

More medical drama

This week is shaping up to be quite unpleasant. I had an appointment at the VA on Tuesday, for my claim for increased compensation based on unemployability. The doctor who interviewed me wasn't unpleasant, but they didn't have my records and didn't know where my records could possibly be, so I don't have any confidence in them reaching a conclusion about my medical history that's based on fact. I have another appointment tomorrow morning, with a psychologist I think, where I'm going to have to lay out my theory about how unending pain and crushing fatigue can lead to mental distress and hopelessness. Who knows if they'll buy it; even if the shrink thinks it's reasonable, without my medical records they're likely to conclude that my medical history doesn't uphold a diagnosis of depression stemming from my fibromyalgia.

On top of the loss of my medical records, my appointment tomorrow is at 9am, which means I have to be there at 8:30, which means I have to leave the house at 8:00, which means I have to get up at 7:30 at the latest. Last time I tried to get up so early on bad sleep, my body went into freak out mode. I was getting adrenaline rush ickness from standing in the bathroom brushing my hair. Its like any deviation from a set schedule makes my body think I'm in mortal danger; unfortunately, the irrational reaction to mortal danger makes me nauseous, shaky, headachy, fatigued, and weak to the point where I can barely stand up.

To try to counteract this effect, I've been getting up half an hour earlier each day for about two weeks now, to try to spread the ill effects out and thereby dilute them. It's worked to a certain extent: I have certainly felt ill the whole time I've been doing this. The last few days have been the worst, as I get up earlier and earlier. Its starting to feel like I never actually wake up, I only dream about getting up and feeling ill while trying to go about my life. This morning, I got out of bed, walked to the couch and sat down, and then sat and stared at the carpet for about half an hour. Then I went outside to the porch, sat down on the steps, and stared at the grass for a bit. The fresh air helped some, but I still don't feel like I'm actually capable of thinking more than one coherent thought in a row.

Maybe being half-asleep during my psych appointment tomorrow morning will actually work in my favor; if I can't understand speech due to my inability to comprehend whole sentences at once, surely they will see that something is wrong with me.

I have another appointment on Monday morning, even earlier but closer to home, so I have to get up about the same time. This appointment is for SSA, not the VA, which I think means I'm not eligible for federal disability. If they can't find me eligible based on the 10-page report they got from Laurel Hill saying that I was not able to work in any capacity, I don't think an hour-long medical review is going to do anything but convince them that I'm capable of working. I guess I never really thought they would find otherwise, but it's frustrating. If the people who are supposed to help disabled people find work say they can't help me because I'm too disabled, and the people who are supposed to support disabled people when they can't work say they can't help me because I can work, what do I do then?

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