Today was my “mental” exam for federal disability insurance. My memory was tested very little, if at all. I had to draw different shapes from memory, but I had like a minute to study each drawing. They were not complex drawings; a square with three dots in the middle, a square and a rectangle side by side. I did just fine, until the last one. It was a little more involved, and I studied it. The the doctor said something to me just as she took the drawing away and I completely forgot the last drawing. I couldn’t even remember what shapes were there. So that was good.
She had me spell some rather obscure words, but I’d been a secretary 30 years, my spelling had always been impeccable. It’s a little rough now, but still fairly good. What I can’t do is define words anymore. I can’t remember words or names, but no tests they administered would show that. I’m sure I made few errors. I had to copy some figures from one page to another, and did a couple pages of math, simple addition to simple fractions and algebra. I did poorly on that, but, since I haven’t been in school since the 90s, I’ve forgotten how to do “simple” math. I don’t know what that shows them about my mental capacity. Most people can’t remember math much past college.
My required physical on Monday wasn’t much of a physical either. I think I was there all of 15 minutes, including wait time. The doctor asked me some questions about my ms symptoms, and what meds I take. He looked in my eyes and checked my reflexes, had me walk heel to toe down the hallway and then we were done. I cannot imagine what his report can say. I can see and walk, that’s about all they accertained. At least I’m not making any major claims of a physical disability.
I am claiming full disability due to memory issues, but as I said, the doctor didn’t really test my memory. She asked me what my worst problem was and I told her it was my memory, that I couldn’t remember to put things on calendar, forget to relay messages, forget to mail documents, lose documents, forget to turn off the oven, forget why I entered a room.
I hate the thought of being denied, but I can see no way these tests will show my memory impairment. No way would I give someone disability based on the testing these doctors did. How do my math skills come into this? I’ve always been lousy at math. What the feds should do is contact my last employer and ask what sort of mistakes I was making. How I had to balance PSMs personal checkbook. A chore for most, for me a monthly nightmare I did for 6 years and now cannot do. I guess I’ll have to address that in my request for reconsideration.
What a stupid waste: my time, the doctors time, transcriptionists time. Just to deny me disability insurance. Disability I have paid into for the past 30 years. Funds I need. All it does is provide job security for federal employees. Now I’ve got to spend the time figuring out the steps to take for reconsideration. More doctor visits? More paperwork? More of my time. I do have plenty of that, so I guess I can slog through this. Who knows, I may not need the information. There’s always the chance I’ll get approved.