When I had my first surgery…
It was for spinal stenosis way back in 2008, I thought that surgery would fix everything. And eventually it did.
At least financially, with the award of my disability case and my first check. But it didn’t happen overnight.
Yours probably won’t either. But at least it will be shorter and along a clearer path, thanks to this website and our ebook.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Here’s my story.
Words of doom — and hope
It was an emergency procedure, scheduled the day after I’d had an MRI done on my upper spine, the result of my steadily worsening ability to walk.
What they found shocked even the neurosurgeon who would save my life 36 hours later.
“You’ve got a very pronounced bone spur right at the base of your skull that’s about to bisect your spinal cord at the C1-C2 level,” he told me with a somber look on his face.
Dumbfounded at this news, I hesitated. Then I asked if he was sure.
“Mr. Sloan,” he said, “you’ve got three choices —
- “Have the surgery done here by me —
- “Have the surgery done somewhere else by another neurosurgeon —
- “Or die a relatively quick and painless death — pretty soon.”
And so began my Disability Journey
I didn’t know it then, of course. The immediate objective was to save my life.
But from the moment of the doctor’s decisive diagnosis, I began my journey to full time disability status.
And along with that change came an unexpected — and welcome — rise in my net monthly income.
It rose from only about $800 a month working 30 painful hours a week at our rural Chamber of Commerce — to full time disability, at $2000 a month.
It was the fastest income increase I’d ever had.
But it wasn’t overnight.
My entire path to a monthly SSDI check that was more than double what I had been making took a little over a year. But that was because I didn’t know back then what I’m about to teach you now.
To paraphrase former President Bill Clinton:
“It’s the paperwork, Stupid.”
Beginning the application process
Anyone who tells you that successfully applying for disability benefits is easy is either misinformed or trying to sell you something,