I just got my approval letter. I am officially on Social Security Disability with Cirrhosis and Cancer from hepatitis C. I have mixed feelings right now. In a sense I’m pretty relieved because I’m not sure what is going to happen next with Hepatocellular Cancer and a liver transplant. The flip side is that I feel...well, I feel disabled. That sucks. It’s making me tired just thinking about it. Really.

This blog will NOT be a how to apply for SSDI. That info is at the end of the page.* Just so you know...I feel the need to mentally gather my wits about me. In my head, I’m sitting across the kitchen table from YOU. Many of you have shared your experiences with me. Maybe my meanderings will help you try and figure out how to approach disability and hepatitis C with cirrhosis.

It is important to turn the thought of disability over a few times. Don’t throw out the idea too quickly. Don’t jump in too lightly either. I am surfing around my brain on several waves of thought. Start by asking yourself some questions.

  • What is my current quality of life?
  • How does working or not working effect that?
  • How will I pay for medical costs?
  • What will my retirement years look like?
  • What do I want out of life?
Quality of life: Life with cirrhosis is hard. Energy levels can vary. Some days I have done yoga before work. Other days I start yoga and end up scooching across the floor and dragging myself up on the couch for a nap. My battles with fatigue have a wide range. I have pushed myself out of bed with B12 and caffeine. Other days I sleep late and sip decaf while staring out the window....all day. (H.E.?)

To read Karen’s entire blog entry with it’s amazing ending, click on IHelpC.com

*Some of you may have to go through a hearing and even reapply. I might not have advice, but my friend Alan does. For more information from Alan Franciscus at HCV Advocate, click here.