Thursday, November 13, 2008

What Do I Do Now?

I was offered a job at the beginning of October. A local government job that was a perfect fit for one of my passions. Twenty hours a week, but still, I'd get out of the house and get some experience in something different. I was sent for a physical with their doctor.

And waited, and waited and waited some more. I'd mentioned to the doctor that I had vascular disease and RSD. He wanted medical releases from the doctors treating those issues. Nurse M promptly faxed them a letter after asking me how I wanted the letter worded (6-8 hours a day and must wear Crocs, please). The problem was getting the letter from my Neurologist. (Can I say that I've been kicking myself for being honest about the RSD?)

He's internationally recognized for his research on RSD. As such, about a year ago, he parted company with USF and started his own research center. Awesome news for him, but a monkey wrench for me.

See, he wouldn't write a letter since he hadn't seen me in 18 months and suggested I contact USF, since they had my medical records. USF wouldn't write a letter, since I hadn't seen a neurologist currently on staff. Without insurance, I wasn't about to spent two hundred dollars to visit him to get a piece of paper. His receptionist took pity on me and offered suggestions. Nurse M faxed over the records SHE had from the neurologist, but it was just a casual piece of paper-it didn't state my limitations.

I was about to contact the woman who offered me the job, to tell her that I couldn't justify spending a lot of money out of pocket for a part time job. One that required me to go get a certification within 90 days that would also cost me a little bit of money. I didn't mind that one, because it is one that could be used in many other jobs.

The phone just rang. It was R, the woman who offered me the job. She had just received a letter from the government doctor with a note from my neurologist attached. I guess Dr. K's receptionist really took pity on my situation and got him to send one-OR the fact that he had to answer questions for SSDI moved him to send it.

R had to withdraw the offer of a job, because of the contents of this letter. What did it say?

"Suzanne has a debilitating form of Reflexive Sympathetic Distrophy. As a result, she cannot work for more than three hours a day, for a total of fifteen hours per week."

It also stated that I should no do excessive amounts of standing, as that exacerbates the condition. There were other limitations in the letter, but those two made it impossible for R to hire me for that position.

WTF?!?!?!?!?! Seriously, when I last saw him, I was working forty hours a week and we discussed this. He KNEW that I was in full time employment, yet he said nothing about work restrictions.

I'm wondering if the SSDI application factors into what Dr. K wrote. I can't think of any job I could take when there are such restrictive guidelines. Can you? So, now, I am holding my breath, wondering if such a letter will get me approved for SSDI on the first go round. Will I be approved before the unemployment runs out and how the heck to I manage in the meantime?

Today's plans included going to a job fair. I have to go-the financial impact of not working has been a disaster. It's hard, though, I have visions of another job offer and that letter coming back around to bite me in the ass once again. Or should I say foot?

What do I do now?

1 People talked back:

Saffa Chick said...

Oh shit. That's just terrible... how can he write that?! Can you maybe find the $200 for a second opinion?

...what about one of those donate buttons on your blog? I'd contribute ;-)