In the world of academia, whether as a student or a professor, the ivory-tower atmosphere tends to de-couple and de-link reality from perception. There is, to begin with, “the world” and its events, causations, occurrences and peoples intertwined by engaging in the politics and activities of daily living; and then, there is our “perception” of such events, which — in their aggregate — is comprised of and by our backgrounds, our beliefs, our interpretive faculties and the paradigms from which we operate.
In college, the world within which one operates is a limited, protected, self-contained universe in which ideas, books, deadlines for term papers and testing for knowledge retained are all experienced through the tunnel vision and narrow prism of a fantasy-world created for rational discourse. The fact is that the universe is comprised of much irrationality and phenomena otherwise unknown or not capable of explanation.
In a Kantian manner (uh-oh, here we go with the rational discourse prism), we bring to the world the belief that everything must have an explanation, all events must be able to be explained by a rational discourse — but reality hits us hard in the face, or upon the backside, whichever metaphor you prefer. Perhaps that is what is meant by “growing up”. For the cynic, the universe has become a jumble of irrationality; for the proverbial optimist, everything yet to be explained can simply be set aside for future revelation. Somewhere in the middle is where most of us belong.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer form a medical condition, and where that medical condition betrays the fond memories of our youth when health was taken for granted and mortality was never even considered, filing for Federal Disability Retirement benefits may seem like an ugly choice. In a world where rational discourse should prevail, the irrationality of a chronic medical condition seems to be an unfair event that requires explanation — or, at least a good defense. We can question and puzzle; we can fret and worry; but in the end, the stark choices are there before us. Whether, ultimately, there is a rational discourse that can adequately explain the medical conditions by which a person suffers — or not — is often besides the point.
Consult with an OPM Disability Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement benefits under FERS and begin the process of obtaining a Federal Disability Retirement annuity, and let the questions concerning rational discourse remain a mystery to be solved in some unknown days ahead. Life is difficult enough to maneuver without worrying about one’s future, and getting a Federal Disability Retirement annuity at least softens the blow in a universe that often seems impervious to the private hells of individual troubles.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire