Will those questions get me the answers?
Probably the question I ask most often is a variation on theme of ‘what?’: What’s going on? What do I know? Eh? WTF? What on earth?
As if I had no input. As if the circumstance had nothing to do with me. As if I could avoid taking responsibility.
There is a lot going on. Resting is more difficult than you’d think.
Girl2 is nearly finished the horrible selection process for secondary school, remarkably, unexpectedly calm. Good woman. Spurs Fan and I are still anxious for her, and struggling not to let on. We’ve had some sort of crisis every Saturday morning, while Girl2 sails on buoyed by luxury baths and hot chocolate.
I doubt if I’ll ever write a novel. That’s ok. Maybe I could build up from my short, self centred blog posts to a short story. I’m going to keep going to the class and try to remember to do the exercises. The girls are always very entertained by me sitting down to do my homework. A house full of hilarity and learning can be no bad thing.
Chairperson is probably being overwhelmed by mixed messages from me.
“I’m stepping back. I can’t do any more for now.”
“What do you think about…? We need somebody to do…”
I’m an interfering voice from the side, as if my opinion needs to be extra loud when I’m not doing the work- what if somebody else does it wrong? I can almost hear my Granny talking about needing to do things herself, on her own two bended knees. I need to sort my head out, to learn to switch off. And to do that without disengaging totally from work I care deeply about. I’m hoping to happen across a middle way sometime.
I’m in the middle of having my sickness benefits reassessed. I have a date for my medical; the appointment where they look at my appearance of health and decide that I’m a scrounger, choosing to avoid paid employment. (I’m currently sleeping 12-14 hours a day, and am rarely noticeably ‘awake’. I’ll happily be employed if they can find someone to take me on.) The date is that of my late mother’s birthday. I’m not so distant from her yet that I can take that one in my stride. Grief with added scrutiny. Something to look forward to.
My legs, arms, ears, back and throat ache. I have a mouth ulcer the size of
an orange a grape an apple seed sore. A 25 year old knee injury is reasserting itself.
I’m right to be in temporary retirement, I know that. You know that. My GP knows that.
But next week, somebody in an office will tick boxes to declare me a liar and a fraudster. They won’t see ‘unwell, but trying to contribute’. They will only see ‘should have a job. Wastrel.’
Remember bloggy buddies, that so called ‘benefit scroungers’ are not Other People. They are me and people like me, trying to do our best with the cards life dealt us. Nobody chooses chronic illness or disability. A coalition of minority parties suggests it’s a lifestyle choice, like going to Eton, perhaps, or not paying appropriate tax. It seems that only the ‘choices’ that are not a choice get penalised.
Dave, his mates and their demonisation of the poor, the sick, and the vulnerable have no conscience and no shame. National debt has increased on their watch, and still they blame the demands of supporting you and me, our children and our parents. This is an unelected government, stripping the UK of its greatest assests- health, social care and education. But sure those things don’t matter, do they?
Don’t be mistaken; this is not about dealing with fraud (official figures show the rate of fraud in claims for sickness related benefits is well less than 1%), but about a matter of principle. Some people don’t matter. There is no constitution to say that all are created equal; there is no recognition of ‘brotherhood’. the powerful and the wealthy pursue policies to benefit themselves and care nothing about the impact on others. Despite protests, moral outrage and court rulings, the elite barge on, not knowing or not caring about the rest of us.
Some people don’t matter. I’ve worked hard, paid taxes and national insurance, done what I was supposed to do, but now, because I can’t make an economic contribution, I have no value. The sick, the disabled, the poor, the vulnerable, the children: we don’t matter. We are easy targets.
They will undermine me, my health, my decisions, how I’ve tried to live my life in the past 7 years. Because, allegedly, that will boost my skills, health and confidence and motivate me to get a job… If there were jobs to get.
Will I matter then?