“I’m at the top of the world looking down on creation and the only explanation I can find –is that love that I’ve found ever since you’ve been around your love put me at the top of the world” — my oldest sister, Cleda, used to sing that song to me when I was a third grader. She was old, really old –all of 13 and in the 8th grade —
I’m sitting at the top of a paradigm shift in my family. After 24 years on disability I have returned to the work force. This is a privilege beyond description. According to the Social Security Administration less than 1/2 of 1% of those on disability ever return to the workforce when they’ve been on it for more than 10 years. The statistics for those on more than 15 years is so small it isn’t even ‘measurable’.
This statistic includes those who use the Ticket To Work program that allows one to work part time while on disability —
I have sat back and watched the world go by as people complain about
and I’ve sat and wondered if they saw the world from my eyes would it look different to them? I was a stay at home mom who never made the choice to be a stay at home mom. Quite the contrary — my plan was to be a career woman who had her family as a priority. I never invited autoimmunity into my life — it intruded like a thief in the night stealing everything I ever wanted, hoped for or dreamed of.
Today I start my first full week — and that thief has been sent to prison. It is still very much alive — it just has to return and make restitution for all it has stolen from me. I have won justice. And Justice is sweet.
I do not take this privilege lightly — I value it. I treasure it. I am grateful for it.