I have taken the drastic measure of scanning and sharing this most recent Aid and Attendance denial from the Department of Veterans Affairs because many don’t believe the VA would not help us. Here it is my friends, in black and white. Please note the list of forms I submitted under the evidence considered on the second page.
Yes, I can file an appeal. But I am not sure the time, energy and effort will be worth it to just be denied again. I have so little energy and time at this point in my life, I am not sure I can. I am sure I will look back and scorn myself for not doing so. Maybe after the holidays….
I know many who have written to tell me their grandfather, father, brother, neighbor, friends uncle and so forth are receiving Aid and Attendance and therefore we should too. I agree. But we are not. I have filled out paperwork, re-submitted paperwork, spent hours on research and information needed, spent hours on the phone and meeting with various experts and I am tired. I already regret the amount of time I spent this summer trying to get help. Instead of enjoying and cherishing Jim’s last months and days in our family home, I worked until exhaustion and emotional craziness, day after day, making calls, sending emails, doing research and repeating our story, over and over again in front of Jim. He just sat and listened to me beg for help repeatedly. I wish I could go back just those few months and instead sit with him, walk with him, hold his hand and know that we will be ok. Not because the government will help us, but because our friends, our neighbors and even strangers would eventually save us. I am not mad or bitter, ok, maybe just a little, but only because I can look back and realize the precious time I lost with him that should have been our family time to have together. We couldn’t have known the short timeframe for his decline. And I will never know how he was impacted listening to my pleas and knowing he was the cause of so much stress in my life. Jim has the kindest soul and he would never want to be the person causing hardship. He always is the first to offer help.
At the home he is living in, they have an angel tree for all of the residents. When Jim was asked what he wanted for Christmas his reply was a true epitome of his selfless nature. He wanted a watch for his wife. That was it. Nothing for him. Just me. Even now, he is still wanting to take care of me and the children. Which, in many ways just makes me sadder. I am warmed by his generosity and love but there is a personal loss felt in each and every moment of my day. Even when I am at my happiest time now, it is shared with a subconscious nudging that I am no longer capable of complete and utter happiness. There is something missing. In the past several years, there has only been one moment I have felt all my cares leave and I could laugh and feel stress free….walking on the beach recently with a friend. We were able to be free of our worries, our guilt, our minds were open to laughing and sharing stories and it was a needed break.
I have been and still am loved by a wonderful man and a kind and giving husband. How lucky am I to have felt such reverence from my partner? Which is why I find it so hard to be completely happy. I know what I am missing.