Sunday, May 31, 2009

You Just Don't Understand: I Can't Be Perfect

We live in a society where no one accepts responsibility for their mistakes, no one is held accountable for their actions, and no one, EVER says they are sorry.

Let me you a small glimpse inside the day in the of un/underemployed where I spend day after day after may doing the same thing without any result: I can only offer you a glimpse into day in the life because there is no room left sit in my car, and I believe my apartment may actually be a fire hazard... This was my daily update posted at 7:30am:

I have done everything humanly possible to clean up the slack; however, I feel I have no other choice than to file a formal complaint so that my entire case is reviewed. The number of mistakes is so overwhelming that I simply don't have enough time to documents each and every one within their respective agencies.

I will try to be more specific later without going into too much detail, but unfortunately, that level of detail is required to file the necessary appeals. Ironic huh? This apartment is like my own little cage, and I am just pathetic enough to run around in circles, hoping to find the much like a hamster wheel, rodent chasing in circles hoping to found my way out my way out before I run out air. If only I had finished my damn PhD, I would do my own case study or reality show on how far we'll go to have nothing at all...

I have taken care of the subrogation claim, however, that does not minimize my level of frustration because I am DROWNING in paperwork. I have contacted several agencies for assistance such as the Disability Law and Advocacy Center; however, I do not have the resources necessary to provide them with a timely response and additional documentation they would lead to do a thorough investigation. There is a very small window of time permitted to file a Request Reconsideration, or file administrative appeal.

This is not new information to anyone who has been reading this message-- and if it is, then the agency involved is in much worse shape than I believed. I WANT A RESPONSE~ I WANT AN EXPLANATION- and oddly enough, I WANT AN APOLOGY!

The simple fact that the only time I received a response from MH was when the "fraud" was entered into the conversation. Yet I was not the one who introduced it into the dialogue. It is very unfortunate that my advocate from the DLAC retired just days before we were scheduled to review my case. That was three years ago, and not a single person who sat in on that meeting has acknowledged that it even took place. So here we are, three years later, and I am asking for the exact same things: assistance filing a social security appeal, vocational rehabilitation, and to be treated with a shred of common courtesy. I cannot believe I have to spell that out for you. For anyone. Professional or otherwise. Has no one read my file? Because anyone who has would understand why I find it to be beyond comprehension that trained mental health professionals would do this to any human being, obsessive compulsive or not. Since I first moved to Nashville, I worked very hard to improve community services and de-stigmatize mental illness, yet here I am having to say this AGAIN, OUTLOUD.

I guess none of remember that I same almost the same person I was when I first moved down here. Actually, that not true. I am FAR WORSE, and feel as though I have been stripped of my dignity, professionalism, and any hope I once had to go back to work and be integrated into the world of the living.

I do not even feel comfortable in attending the very came community activities that I used to helps plan. I am so completely baffled and just plain horrified that I actually have to say these things outloud.

There is local attorney I have known or many years. He recently made some very serious, very public and very embarrassing mistakes. Prior to that event, he worked on legislation capping damages in medical malpractice claims. He had an expression that he would use quite often and that was, "Sorry Works!" He was right. "Sorry" does work, yet still haven't heard it being said. Ultimately, those two little words became the driving force behind his political legacy and the force at the core of his being when he went in to recovery. The last interview he did on TV, he told the reporter that he does not wish to be remembered for the mistakes, but how went about correcting them. People, listen up, "SORRY WORKS!"

I also want to be clear that every time I have to call Social Security or DHS, it only compounds my cost of living expenses (40 cents per minute on the telephone -- a bill which is not even considered to be a justifiable expense) Most agencies do not include self-addressed stamped envelopes, and I cannot afford the postage required to mail out all of the requested documentation (e.g., utility bills, medical bills, pay stubs, etc.) So when one your employees tells me that he has removed himself from my case, I should not have to spend 29 minutes on old with the Social Security Administration just to learn that he was trying to intimidate me by threatening to have my funds frozen immediately. I think I should be reimbursed for that phone call. I think he should have to pay out out of his own pocket.

That statement was made not only to me, but also in front if other employees at your agency. It is not only irresponsible and unprofessional, but it also probably illegal, and justifies the complaint I will be filing against him in order to re-cap dome the damages. It is called breach of fiduciary duty, although I expect you probably already know that, but if you don't, you should look it up along with subrogation, since I'm pretty sure that one falls should the scope of services you were contracted to provide for at that time.

Fortunately, a number of agencies will take online complaints. Unfortunately, my internet was interrupted for non-payment for several weeks and there is no funding resource or community agency that provides subsidized Internet access or free printer ink. Transportation costs are ridiculous so going to the library is not an option. Neither is returning to work right now, since it would cost too much to get to the interview or provide official (expensive) copies of my graduate school transcripts necessary to update my teaching credentials, were oh, such a good investment!

Set aside, I am not the most user friendly person right about now, so I have found it difficult to put on a happy face so I can work at McDonald's which pays more than Metro anyway.

The subrogation claim has been resolved but I just learned that my breast biopsy was not pre-authorized and I was told by my INSURANCE CSR (the person who answers the phone!) that I should not have the surgery that has already been scheduled at the Women's Hospital for 8/21/2008. AmeriChoice (United HealthCare) did they did not authorize the biopsy last month, and have not, as of yet, received a request prior authorization for the surgery next week...

This was a lovely 54 minute conversation because he would not mail me copies of my EOBs or confirm that what, if any, requests have been submitted for payment since my last inquiry and change of address. He finally told me to call the state (Tennessee) which I have already done several times, and they told me to call Social Security but it was already past business hours and I am not authorized to make changes to my file anyway.

I'll be in touch when I can. Unfortunately, each agency has different deadlines, and it takes a lot of energy and time to scan in, copy, or respond to each inquiry in writing, so I find myself running out of time since I can't seem to get anything done unless I just do nothing at all.

And even though my life is a living hell, I have almost learned how to enjoy the sheer irony of it all... for someone with OCD and posttraumatic stress, this is truly a ridiculous little experiment.

I am becoming increasingly inspired to just burn every last document I own, throw away my keys and my cell phone and take Spotty some place where we can live off the land and ignore the fact that society has me chained to a computer screen that screen that does provide the basic necessities I need to live in this .

I have come this far, and I am becoming rather skilled and at expressing myself without needing an audience or the obsessive need to check every fact, throw, and typo for capitalization and perfection.

So for now... I write.

Maybe later, I'll read, but if there is any justice left in this world, someday, I'll actually live.

Good-bye for now. I need a break.

With love,

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Elyssa Lies

I am so glad that there are at least a few people out there who remember me from when I was a kid people, and a few people who can identify my body without three DNA blood tests to determine what medical facility would accept me as a transfer. Ever heard of EMTALA people? Ever heard of HIPPA? Ever heard of Patient Dumping? Ask Jim Blumstein, Professor of Law at Vanderbilt Law School or take his course Law 734: Health Law & Policy.

Yes, I ASKED to be committed. I called for help. I said it every single way I knew how, without asking people who were most able to give it.
I never forget a slight, and I am extremely grateful to people who didn't ask questions or doubt my intentions. I will hold them in my thoughts, and can safely promise that I will never again call upon you for help.

There is something to be said for paying it forward. So to people who actually took the time to physically see if I was okay, and to two very special ladies who brought me clothing after everything I had in my possession was taken away from me... and to the photographer who actually observed my injuries, thank you. I can honestly say that I took one for the team. For the tweeters and twackers who let me know I was alone in my journey... you're right I wasn't. You can tweet for peeps without being certifiably nuts. That's not to say I am not certifiably nuts, but I thinks it rather pretentious for y'all to think that you know my mind better than I do after 36 years. I want to believe that this feel connected to a world filled with hatred, bigotry and violence.... I made it through. And I already paid it forward.

It is pretty clear what I need, and I so tired of people asking why I can't find one. Have you seen the news? What I need is hot water. What I need is a safe place to go. What I need is the idiot who fucked up my computer to fix the damn thing. I wouldn't mind having a safe place for Spotty, and a little bit of acceptance. So out of respect for people that I once held in high regard, I chose to take the proper channels. I fed them information without claiming ownership... I sold a news story for $1.00. Kool... I made a dollar last year. That will pay the bills.

There were people I respected and admired, and now see as shallow and insincere. People who are afraid to be associated with someone "like" me? What exactly does that mean anyway? Aren't you impressed that I'm a Harvard Legacy? Am I not one of the "Chosen People?"

Do you think I am living on a total income of $615.00/month because it is fun?
If you can do better, pleeeeeze let me know...

If I can see somebody else doing it, then maybe I could figure out how to do it myself. I am willing to learn from anyone. Just think of all the valuable lessons Hitler taught us??? Yes, people are sheep.

I learned even your mistakes, so is there nothing of value that I can bring to this community???

Would you like to try going on welfare for three months or so? I think you would enjoy the application process. After all there is nothing quite like it in the world.

So, I was "ordered" not to volunteer, not to call the police if I hear gun shots, because only crazy people call 911 several times in one day. Only thing is, "crazy" people exaggerate the situation, so clearly if I have lived for three years, then I can certainly wait another few months. Really?

I am only allowed to use than 100 words or less in my written correspondence. Thank God for Twitter, it is good training.

BTW (by the way ;-) The Gettysburg Address was only 267 words. Less than two tweets. Granted, I am no Lincoln, but every once in a while, I do say something important.
There is something to be said for brevity, but there is also something to be said about honesty, isolation, and the value of technology for people with disabilities. So let this be my project for "Save The Internet" because Legal Aid thought it was kinda funny when I told them that my Internet was scheduled to be disconnected.
Who needs the internet anyway? Who needs information, access, a forum, a voice??? And even if some tweets make me laugh, is that so bad?? Maybe even a small diversion from reality? Am I not worthy?

I foolishly believed that by volunteering in the community, I would come across a real job with real wages and real benefits. Yeah, that was a great idea.
Don't worry... I learned my lesson. I will volunteer no more. After all, why buy the cow if you can get the milk for free?

Let it be known I'm a pretty quick study. I am cursed with an exceptionally vivid memory. My cortisol levels have been running low since '95. You figure it out. (Robert Sapolsky: Why Zebra's Don't Get Ulcers)

I am truly offended by the events that led people to call my family half way around the world and the country, when all they really needed to do was ask me. Not all "kids" are lost... some don't want to be found.

Yes, I am reckless, I am loud, I am always right, and I am "out of my mind fucking nuts" also known as "OTWFN: Off The Wall Fucking Nuts" and that is the presumption. Don't forget, I am very much father's daughter, and am very much my mother's alibi. So thanks. Points!

All the better for them because the crazier I am, the less embarrassed they feel. How about some extra credit for their excellent parenting skills.

Crazy? Loud? Different?

Guilty, as charged. I am sooo embarrassed... how dare I post crazy shit like this online? Don't I know how bazaar that seems? Don't you? Because let's face it... there are two possibilities:

(1) I'm telling the truth, and it's serious,


(2) I'm NOT telling the truth, and it's serious.

So for everyone who told me to go home... did you actually think my parents would rush in to rescue me? Sorry, but no. Not my family. Now I'm stuck here, and you are stuck with me.

And for the record, even suggesting that there is "home" to go to... well than YOU haven't been paying attention.

Don't you realize I am home?

I find it so hard to believe that after all this time people find it easier to speak around me and actually think that is in my best interests? Sorry, but no.

And, you need not worry-- I don't need to be told twice where I'm not welcome.

I am less than 20 miles from several people who called Philadelphia, only to find that they don't want me either. Why would they possibly want to have me in their pristine, well-decorated homes when you paint such a lovely picture?

Guess what-- I' have never even seen my father's home... nor do I expect an invitation to Thanksgiving or Christmas.

So to all the people who "phoned home" to complain about e.d., job well done, you're stuck with me now.

And since I can't get a get a job, and I can't really afford the gas to go anywhere, I don’t think you need to call in a crisis team. I am perfectly happy sitting here by myself listening to my favorite YouTube videos and thinking about everyone else tucked safe and snug in their Ethan Allen beds. Good night to you all... you don't need to read this, and of course, you can ALWAYS hit delete.

That makes me sick. I never was really was a child, and it is really odd that people would start treating like one now. That is such bullshit, because child support was terminated on August 15, 1988. No other provisions were made, and I earned more money at 14 than I did in the last 10 years out together.

I miss the Barge. I think it is ridiculous that people would complain that I am "embarrassing myself.” At least I'm willing to take ownership of that one... was it less embarrassing to find out my mother contacted my professors and withdrew from classes because I was "too ill" to go to school.

Is any less embarrassing then being left at the airport on Thanksgiving Day? Or told that you do not deserve to go the dentist; that you can't sleep in the guest room if you have nightmares because you I might ruin the furniture think I actually give a shit about embarrassing myself? Do you think for a second they are counting on it? Did you think for one moment that there might, just, may be a reason I do not want to go home.

Is it less embarrassing than having your mother finds you "housing" at a long-term state psychiatric hospital, or being told that you might not have a fill on your soda because it cost $1.00? Is it any less embarrassing than finding out you have a new two months after he was born?

Yeah, I am embarrassed. Send me to Canada PLEEEZE!!!

Yes, I can act crazy. Yes, I may be crazy, and I sure a shit wish I was because there might be a possibility that created all of this "in my head.” It is not normal to have 43 addresses on file. It is not normal to care more about a cat than any single human alive. So, no, I am not normal, but does that make me bad? Does it make me dangerous? Does it want being told to "leave town" or take my own my own life so that society is not burdened by caring for me financially? Well, guess what-- I do not really care anymore, and there been many times in my life where I would rather not be alive, I refuse to let "them" Not like that.

So for so many people who have silenced me before, keep in mind I am NOT psychotic. And I am definitely mot "normal"

I am done. I so "over it" by now that if your embarrassed by my actions then you are giving me way too much power. I can own my behavior, and I can accept my feelings. And I think you need to do the same.

But I will not live in fear for the rest the of my life. And if I do get evicted tomorrow, so be it. It won't be the first time. And if you’re really lucky, there will some great new books donated to the public library. Yes, I AM ANGRY. Anger is a very strong emotion that is key to motivational theory. So yes, I am angry AND I am motivated.

According at my mother, the lovely little creature that she is for blameing for all her her failed marriages, and uses me as an excuse trying to get sympathy from others. She also was evicted from childhood homes in Cherry Hill, Lawrence, Great Neck (North and South) and yes, of course, that was somebody else’s fault too.

Apparently it was all my stepmother's fault. Nice. At least their mother would not allow them to be thrown away with each new boyfriend, tummy tuck, Jaguar or diamond ring.

So aren’t you guys glad you called my parents because now you’re stuck with me, my medical bills, and student debt. Isn't that special? I came here to WORK. I came here to be a part of something. I came here to leave the past behind me. I filled my long nights volunteering at the Family Shelter. I spent my days sleeping in four-hour shifts, and hoping that my oh-so-vivid dreams might actually be pleasant for just one night.

But I've been keeping notes. I'm paying attention to the rules and I'm paying attention to the news. It is not so random, and it not so crazy.

Yes I have filed appeals, but that'd getting old since no one bothers to follow up. What the ~ is wrong with THAT picture?????

All I can say is this, I tried. I tried damn hard. But ya know, crazy is, crazy does.

Aren't you guys lucky to have me? This is my home. This WAS my home. Thanks for making me feel so welcome.

e.d. over and out.