In the end, isn’t that all that we have? We like to speak in terms of vast, grandiose expanses of time, where we create plans that span a lifetime, or refer to wide swaths of historical periods as if we have any conception at all about time, segments of memories or even of the memories already forgotten. Old men and women reflect back and regret the time lost; middle-aged people who are caught up in the race to make up for lost time, continue on the treadmill that never seems to lessen; and the young — they just race through it as if there is no tomorrow.
Cherishing moments — how does one do that in a fast-paced world of technological amplification where everything moves at a hare’s pace when the yearning is for the tortoise’s calm? Life comes at us with a fury and an unrelenting torrent of rain and winds; and when we try and raise the umbrella or walk at an angle to counter the ferociousness, we merely get left behind.
How is it that “memories” become more significant and important in our lives than the actual “living” of an episodic slice of our daily existential encounters? At what point does one take precedence over the other? Is there an imbalance of disproportionality that occurs — as in, spending more time “remembering” as opposed to “living”? Is a person who watches the same move over and over, day after day, any different from the one who constantly daydreams about a moment in his or her life, over and over again, repetitively in a lost morass of memories unrepentantly consumed? What is the proper balance and mixture — somewhat like a recipe for a homemade pie or a birthday cake — between the ingredient of cherishing moments and the reality of daily living?
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition begins to prevent the Federal or Postal worker from performing one or more of the essential elements of one’s Federal or Postal job, the problem with cherishing moments — any moments — is that the impediment of the medical condition itself will not allow for any enjoyment at all, whether of memories remembered or of life to be lived. That is when you know that there is a disequilibrium that needs to be corrected.
Preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be filed with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, may be the first, albeit tentative step, towards attaining a level of normalcy where cherishing moments is a choice to be taken, and not as a regretful nightmare uncontrollable in the restless dreams of a forsaken career.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire