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Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1048
   Posted 10/11/2007 10:36 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi All,
     I just wanted to post this to maybe encourage those of you who are trying to get disability.  I got word this morning that I have been approved.  It took me exactly one year.  I got denied 2 times and appealed.  I didn't get a lawyer.  I contacted my senator and congressman.  They helped me tremendously.  It is a daunting process to say the least.  My doctor also helped me by writing a detailed letter about my condition.  My pastor of 23 years also wrote a letter on my behalf. 
      I think you all will understand when I say it is the happiest and the saddest day of my life.  It's such a financial relief.  I just  never dreamed of giving up my nursing career at 35!  It's all in God's hands,  He knows where He's leading my life!
                                                                                                         Never give up.  God Bless,   Judi

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 7720
   Posted 10/11/2007 11:54 AM (GMT -6)   
yeah Congratulations!!! yeah

I know that must be a huge relief! :-)

I know several of us would like to duplicate your results. Can you help by giving us more particulars? We all would love any tips to speed up the time line that you can give us.

What state are you in?

How (write,call,email) did you contact the senator & congressman?

What did you tell/ask them?

Here in Georgia, I have been waiting for the judge hear my 2ond appeal for almost 2 years. All I've gotten after contacting my senator & congressman were form letters verifying I'm on the wait list. skull


Lynnwood, Co-Moderator: Lupus Forum
SLE(’00), Sjogren's Syndrome, SAD, Depression, Herpes Simplex 1
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Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1048
   Posted 10/11/2007 12:42 PM (GMT -6)   
I would love to help anyone and everyone that I possibly can. I am in the state of Mississippi. I e-mailed my senator (Trent Lott) and my congressman (Gene Taylor). I was amazed at how promptly they replied. I already had in hand a letter from my doc and my pastor that I shared with the congress and senator's office. I emailed them pictures of myself. (noting swelling, joint deformities, etc) Every time I had a doctor's appointment, labs, med change I sent them copies and they would forward it to the disability team. In my e mails to the congress/senator I told them details about my disease and decline. I used very strong, yet respectful language. I told them how disappointed I was in the process and that it's a shame that just because Lupus doesn't have a superstar's face attached to it many people (including the division of disability) were ignorant to the profoundly disabling effects it has. I fully intend to make appointments to speak face to face to both Mr. Taylor and Mr. Lott. I told them in my original e-mail that it is sad that the "average American" has no power with our own government. I shouldn't have to be a superstar to educate people about the horrors of this underfunded, under researched disease!
Anyway, I'm rambling. I would love to help anybody in anyway I possibly can. Please feel free to ask any questions. Please forgive brain fog! Judi

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 10/11/2007 3:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Judi,

I sure understand what you mean by happiest AND saddest. It would be like closing the door on our old, healthy body. *sniffle sniffle* And yet, it provides much needed assistance in caring for ourselves. I don't imagine that I'll ever need that type of assistance, but it is sure nice to know it is there if it ever becomes necessary. I did, though, receive SS death benefit when my husband and father of oldest two children died at age 25. I remember getting the first check and the check which represented all the back pay they owed . . . I was desperate to receive this money and yet, when it came in the mail, I wanted to burn the checks. It felt like I was trading money for dh. . . . . I actually had to wait to cash those first two checks because it made me ill. Somehow, when I found a bank and cashed them to open an account, the lady that helped me seemed to be sent from heaven. She was a super sweet lady who didn't need to say a word, but seemed to understand the pain it caused to finally cash those checks. . . . she was a little gift from God.

I hope that it gives you extra energy now that you don't have to fret about the government's decision whether or not to approve your disability. Thanks for sharing your story . . . there are several here waiting a very long time for some good news like that.


In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1048
   Posted 10/11/2007 5:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Is it not completely amazing how God always puts someone in our path with the right words at the right moment?! I really want to use my experiences to help people in any way I can. I fully intend to make an appointment to have a face to face discussion with both the senator and the congressman that assisted me about the whole process and what a nightmare it is. I know my one little voice can't make a huge difference, but you never know.

Thank you for your listening ears and encouraging words! God Bless You, Judi

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 8198
   Posted 10/11/2007 5:46 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Judi,
   Congrats!!! yeah   That is wonderful news! I understand your feeling of happiness and sadness at the same time. I felt the same way when I got my disability 9 yrs ago at the age of 40.
   Now you can breathe and relax a bit now that you know you are approved. Take care and thanks for sharing your news. Keep us updated. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.
Dx: Lupus,RLS,RA,Asthma,Fibro,Sjogren's,Raynaud's,Divertic, Stroke,Atherosclerosis,Seizures,Neuropathy,CAD
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JOB 5:18 For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hands also heal.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 10/12/2007 12:32 AM (GMT -6)   
Congratulations! I have been in the process for over a year; quite frustrating. I have a lawyer, but your idea and the information you provided to your representatives are what I am going to do next. So, you have already helped someone! I'm so happy for you and glad that this will ease your mind.

xoxo emmie

SLE, limited scleroderma, Sjogrens, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, seizure disorder, Raynauds, Hashimoto's (or Autoimmune) Enchephalopathy

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1048
   Posted 10/12/2007 11:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you guys so much!!! Emmit, you will be in my prayers. Good luck and God Bless you all. Judy

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 2818
   Posted 10/12/2007 12:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Judy, I'm glad to hear about your success. It was sure a huge help for me. I have to be disabled and on SS for 2 years though before I can get the medical benefits. Fortunately I still get military medical insurance. Which I will have for basically the rest of my life. So when i get that it will be my secondary ins. It's still a struggle because v.a. doesn'r pay everything. But a few 100 extra dollars a month at least makes me feel like a human being again. I can actually spend a dollar once and awhile on myself and not feel guilty.
I'm thrilled for you. Now you can start concentrating on getting to feel better!
God Bless
Primary Biliary Cirrosis,  COPD, Cervical Cancer survivor. Osteoporosis
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Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1048
   Posted 10/12/2007 8:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks. I really do think the relief of financial pressure will help me reduce flares. I definitely wont be living "high on the hog" (as we say in South Miss.) but I will not have to depend on my 60 year old dad to help buy my meds! That makes me feel better! Judi
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