After many months, the day was finally here, the culmination of a two-year battle.
We exited our respective vehicles, shook hands and started up the sidewalk, him explaining to me what to expect inside. What he didn’t tell me, but I should have realized since it was a federal building, was that when we entered the first door we would be greeted by a security guard at a desk. The guard asked if I had anything like mace or any sharp objects in my purse. I said no, but then I remembered the pocket knife I always carry. I had to take that back to the car. When I returned, the security guard told me to face the wall with my legs spread and my arms out. Then he wanded me, had me turn around, and repeated the process. I realized then a little of what people experience when they fly nowadays. (I haven’t flown since 1992, long before all the extreme airport security was put in place here in the US.)
We then had about 30 minutes to go over my case, to clarify any details, and review the results of the medical and psychological reports ordered by Social Security.
Finally, the hearing assistant called us to the hearing room – the last door, literally and figuratively, I had to enter in hopes of finally winning my case.
The next 45 minutes were the reason I had taken half of a Xanax before I left the house. I was appearing before a judge, via videoconferencing, who would decide if I would get approved for disability. This was an adjudication hearing, which is what one has to go through in the US when their claim is rejected twice. Given my druthers, I would never have applied for disability, but my health problems no longer gave me a choice.
As we left the hearing room, the lawyer looked at me with a grin and said, “You won!” He said he could tell by the questions the judge asked (he had handled such hearings in front of her before), especially near the end. From his lips to God’s ears!