Two images are evoked by such a phrase: One, of a traveler who leaves behind a trail of regrets; the other, a traveler who travels upon a trail that has already been traveled. The former allows for new paths to be discovered; the latter, of a trail that has already been established, and one which regretfully cannot be altered. It is the subtle distinction between the teacher who has only taught and the experimenter who has actually lived it; the contemplator, as opposed to the one who gets his hands dirty; the one who procrastinates forever and a day, in contradistinction to the individual of action.
Regrets are a funny animal; they haunt us like loyal dogs who never leave our side, and like collectors who cannot sell their accumulated pieces, the weight of the aggregate is what ultimately destroys. The longer we live, the greater the chance of having gathered regrets that tether our souls; and in the end, it is the state of our souls which we need to be concerned about.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that the medical condition prevents the Federal or Postal worker from performing one or more of the essential elements of his or her job, the choices are clear: remain and endure the suffering; quit and walk away; or file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits. The First may leave a trail of regrets; the Second, a trail to be traveled upon; and it is the third — to file for FERS Disability Retirement benefits — that may allow for a new path for one’s future, where one may leave behind that trail of regrets.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire