It often takes years, and sometimes never; the child that has grown up, lived independently for some time, and has asserted his or her separation and personality still remains a child in the mind of the parent. The image we hold often far extends beyond the reality that has changed and circumstances have dictated; it is that which remains as the final vestige of what we yearn for, steadfastly refuse to surrender, and allow in our imagination to fester with the desires of fantasies left unrealized.
That is why loss of a parent from the perspective of the child is just as difficult as the loss of a child from the vantage point of a parent; each holds on to the image remaining, like Platonic Forms that transcend the ugly reality of the starkness in broad daylight. From the child’s perspective, the image we hold is of the omnipotent parent — vibrant, bringing joy and security, always there to reassure. From the parent’s viewpoint: of the innocence never tarnished, the first gurgle and smile, and that word that bonds the relationship forever and a day. Yet, each grows; the parent, frail and into senility; the child, into adulthood and loss of innocence.
It is, however, the image we hold that remains, and is the last to exit despite the coffins of despair and the alterations of nature’s cruelty upon the wrinkles of time.
For the Federal employee and U.S. Postal worker who suffers from a medical condition such that the medical condition no longer allows the Federal or Postal worker to remain in the same job, career and agency of one’s chosen career, there comes a time when Federal Disability Retirement should be a consideration, and the image we hold of a long-lasting tenure as a Federal employee in a particular line of work must, by medical necessity, change.
The image we hold is a figment of one’s stubbornness to remain steadfastly upon a course of immortality; we all have to submit to the winds of change, and preparing, formulating and filing an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be submitted to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether the Federal or Postal employee is under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset, is that very change that must go beyond the image we hold — of one’s self.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire