Things I wish
1) I wish I wasn't the only one that understands the severity of my husband's disabilities but I'll accept this role forever as long as I am not continually tossed road blocks to getting him the care he NEEDS. When that happens I have to make a lot of noise and make everyone who stands between my husband and his needs, aware of exactly how disabled he is.
2) I wish my husband's doctors did not talk to me like I am an idiot. I only interact with and monitor him constantly even while at work (Skype) but I'll accept that treatment forever as long as my husband's voice is heard and respected.
3) I wish I didn't have to worry that one day my husband's little bit of income is going to be taken away one day but I'll accept that possibility for now because I will find a way to help us thrive so that one day we won't have to worry what the heck the VA does.
4) I wish my husband wasn't disabled. I wish he could walk like a normal person. I wish he could just get dressed, just walk up the stairs, just remember to do tasks, just enjoy his hobbies, just get in a vehicle and drive, just go and do work of any kind but he can't do any of that; and I'll accept that forever because disabled people have much to teach us but I know he wishes all of those things more than anything. More than you don't want to pay him to compensate for his injuries acquired at war that make work of any kind impossible; more than all of my wishing. My husband wishes he could just be normal and not disabled.
Yes, I'm writing you two letters today. Because, in investigating your aforementioned screw up, I found another one. Now, I am not a frustrated veteran's wife...I'm angry. I am very, very angry.
My husband filed for his disability in November of 2012. We got the approval paperwork in October of 2013, which stated that his benefits were to be backdated to the date of original claim. Now, to my understanding, that means a lump sum for the total amount of benefits from the date of filing to the date of approval.
We have yet to see a dime of those benefits. I understand that he has to pay back separation pay from when he came off Active Duty. In the letter you sent us, we were told that you would continue taking his entire disability check until his separation pay minus taxes was paid back. Well, that's already happened...and yet you're now telling us that you're taking the gross amount he was paid...instead of the net. So my husband, who fought in the name of freedom...who has nightmares every night...who can't get stuck in traffic without having a panic attack...who looks for every exit before fully entering a room...has to pay taxes TWICE?!?!?!
It's bad enough that you LIED about the dates he was enrolled. But now you're taking the disability that YOU promised him. You have effectively tied our hands and made it impossible for us to do anything better for our family.
And would you, #DearVA, like to know what the worst part of this whole nightmare is? The plain and simple fact that my husband's case is not unique. It scares me to know how many heroes and their families are suffering, especially right at Christmas, because you can't get your stuff together. You can't fulfill the promise made to these brave men and women. Classic.
Yet Another Veteran's Wife Having To Do Your Job For You And Pissed About It