For a painter, it is either the sight of uncontrollable delight, or a subtle sense of foreboding into depths of despondency; for the blank canvas represents two sides of a single coin: an opportunity to do what one can, or the beginning of that which may be rejected by an unappreciative public eye. But that is the inherent anomaly of every opportunity presented: potential success, or possible failure.
That is why we carry around within us quips of self-appeasement, in order to lessen the weight of expected shortcomings: “Nothing gained, nothing lost”; “It is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all”; the list of 100 successful people who failed at first; and other proverbial self-motivators. Within such realms of fear and loathing for the future, however, is the truth of living: Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
Until one brushes the first dab of color upon a blank canvas, one will never experience the beauty of art, and while failure may never be the end product if one never begins, so success and the potential for human fulfillment can never be realized. Unexpected circumstances in life often provide a basis for people to just “give up” in despair.
Medical conditions tend to be a foundational basis for such surrender to life’s inequities, and Federal employees and U.S. Postal workers who suffer from an unexpected medical condition, know better than most how unfair life can be. Suddenly, the gush of accolades stops; the golden boy or girl of yesteryear is considered merely with a disdainful passing glance; and coworkers shun as if beset with a disease of contagion. But Federal Disability Retirement is a benefit which is tantamount to a fresh and blank canvas: it is an opportunity of sorts, and should be approached with the same rashness and expectation of delight as when once youth feigned ignorance of future forebodings.
Federal Disability Retirement allows for the Federal or Postal worker to have a fresh beginning, a new start, in painting a picture filled with bright colors and scenes of unanticipated opportunities. While it may pay a base annuity of 60% of the average of one’s highest 3 consecutive years of Federal Service for the first year, then 40% every year thereafter, it is that financial bridge for future endeavors which must be considered.
It is a benefit accorded to all Federal and Postal employees who find that a medical condition now prevents them from performing one or more of the essential elements of the Federal or Postal job; but beyond the monetary benefits, it is also like the blank canvas which allows for a fresh start in a life often filled with gloom and despair, but where the plenitude of colors may yet be chosen with a steady hand for the future.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire