Monday, April 22, 2013

Applying for SSI, Day Four: Hooray for Big Government!

A story told in images with minimal explanation:

We waited, patiently:

And not so patiently:

We looked at the curious art hung on one wall.

Why? I wondered (about the art, not the wall or the wait)

It soon became apparent that our goal was to be called by someone from Door Number Nine:

This is apparently the uniform of the Social Security Worker in Los Angeles:

(the stilettos, not the flip flops)

We at last entered Door Number Nine and accompanied a very nice woman, also in stilettos, to her desk. She asked us a series of questions and typed so fast on her keyboard that it put my own considerable talents to shame. She was thorough, respectful of Sophie and me. She did ask me when her seizures started, and when I told her at three months, she asked why and I said We never found out, and she said We had a traumatic situation to deal with in our family this month and I said What was it? and she said Our 18 month old son had a febrile seizure, and I said, Oh, I'm so sorry and I know how stressful and awful that is, but he will be fine and she nodded and teared up a bit and then kept typing.

This calls for a bit of French, I think:

Quelle chance!


Or as Carrie might say (and you should buy her book!): There are no coincidences. 

We were out of there in a half an hour with an assurance from Our Lady in Stilettos that all was well. All total, we spent one hour and one half in the United States Social Security Office, an hour that included a thorough security check of our bags and persons, some outstanding people-watching, curious Asian art, a wonderful worker who did her job quickly, sensitively and efficiently, the new experience of helping Sophie to sign an X on several lines, and, of course, the crossing off the list of applying for Supplemental Social Security for Sophelia Bedelia.

I'd end this post with a rousing chorus of God Bless America!!! but I wouldn't want to make anyone have a heart attack.


  1. Congratulations! Other than the waiting (which doesn't seem to have been too bad) your whole appointment sounded smooth.
    Now, when do you "hear" officially?
    The Universe did look out for you today, led you to a stiletto-wearing angel....
    One big sigh of relief....

  2. Sophie always looks so well dressed. I love her outfits!

  3. I'm envious of Sophie's socks.

  4. You are held in love.
    Rock it!

  5. I will probably dream of Sophie tonight. I say this from much experience.

  6. That is a coincidence. Or fate. Whatever. And man...those stilettos crack me up.

  7. Hallelujah! There are no coincidences. Sophie is so beautiful.

  8. It is a good thing when people do their jobs as a calling and not as a way to to make money. What a difference it makes to have someone who cares.

  9. I don't think it was a coincidence either. Things happen for a reason.

    Yesterday I noticed a mole on Katie had grown considerably in the past year. It now has two colors to it and is larger than the head of a pencil. This morning I had a 43 year old woman with stage four melanoma. Katie is seeing the doctor next week.

  10. Definitely not a coincidence! And Sophie looks adorable, perfectly adorable. I kind of love that the SS workers wore stilettos.

  11. Thank you, Elizabeth! And I am going to go big with Our Lady in Stilettos. May we be as no-accident-y when it's our turn to go through all this!

  12. Wow! That is so NOT how I expected that story to go. Thank goodness you found someone who could empathize and get you in and out of there.

    As for the art, I'm guessing someone got it as a gift, didn't really want it, and thought, "This will be perfect for that blank wall at work."

  13. This one made me happy. So happy.

  14. dear, dear sophie. i have been seeing mermaids everywhere lately. you and she have a way of slipping under one's skin.
    (holy cow--i can that woman walk in those shoes?)

  15. I love this post. And I love people who do their job with an open heart. Also, I work for a state agency and I have lately been thinking derogatory thoughts about my co-workers in their hoochie-mama shoes. Shame on me.

  16. My BRAND NEW THERAPIST told me yesterday about a patient of his applying for and getting SSI almost immediately he was so surprised and thrilled. I thought of you and Sophie right then in his office and felt a wave of hope. Much love.

  17. I love that you actually photographed the stilettos.

  18. It's like a movie. First the winds of change, then a meaningful encounter with a stranger. The stilettos. I love the way you document your life. I'm glad you made it through the chore. And oh, Sophie--she looks like spring.

  19. I sighed a sigh of relief for you at the end.

    Have you ever heard of the red string of fate?

    " The red string of fate, also referred to as the red thread of destiny, red thread of fate, and other variants, is an East Asian belief originating from Chinese legend and is also used in Japanese legend. According to this myth, the gods tie a red cord around the ankles of those that are to meet one another in a certain situation or help each other in a certain way. " (from Wikipedia)

    We're all connected with those we're meant to meet along the way. Maybe under those stilettos she had her red thread.

  20. You definitely had an angel in that office Your beautiful girl looks tired in the last photo...gorgeous, though, as always.

  21. Congratulations! Coincidence...I think not.

    I thought of Sophie today while listening to Matthew Sanford's story on On Being. He is a paraplegic yoga instructor.

    The world is so full of grace and beauty.
    These moments, when I hear his story or come here and read your words, they are moments of transcendence.

    and hilarity.
    Wonderful shot of the stilettos!

  22. Everyone else has said what I would've said. Coincidence? I think not!

    But I will add this: I went to a friend's son's kindergarten graduation, and the teachers were all tatted up and stiletto'd up, and I was thinking - I bet Dick and Jane are rolling over in their graves!

  23. Oh Sophie looks so tired :(
    I marvel at your great attitude

  24. hope she gets granted what you applied for.



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