Could the First Chapter be changed? Who will write the final chapter? Does memory serve the dictates of truth, or does a bit of “fudging” occur as with every narrative told, taking liberally the artistic license to its extreme? Will it be a Dickensian opening or a Salinger’s scoffing of the details of birth? What genre would be encompassed: Fiction; autobiography; Science Fiction; a Narrative Poem, perhaps? Can fact and fiction be interwoven, and will the middle parts include characters long forgotten, and some individuals be left out deliberately just out of pure spite?
But that we could write the ending to our own story — of dreams that were fulfilled, loves that embraced, regrets that could be erased. To that extent, every life would then be a work of perfection, where each chapter being written as the experience of this encounter with the world became an undifferentiated reflection of a phenomena encased in self-fulfillment: As life is lived, the story is written; as the story is told, life follows upon the very telling.
Isn’t that what “virtual reality” is; or even of being lost in one’s daydreaming, and wishing for things beyond the bubble of real life? If life were a story and we were the authors, every dream would be fulfilled, every fantasy satisfied, every thought completed, and every sentence punctuated with exactitude.
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 one’s Federal or Postal job, the “life” that becomes the “story” is the completion of SF 3112A — Applicant’s Statement of Disability.
That is the narrative, or the slice and portion thereof, that the U.S. Office of Personnel Management will be reviewing and analyzing, and perhaps even “picking apart” if it is not told persuasively, punctuated punctiliously, and provided with clarity of purpose. It is, indeed, the story of one’s life — a slice thereof, but one which must be a narrative in response to specific questions posed by SF 3112A.
Consult with an attorney before formulating and narrating; for the next chapter beyond, after the Federal Disability Retirement application has been filed, will be determined by how one tells the story of one’s medical condition and the nexus with one’s employment capacity.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire