Accident Disabled Ironworker Seeks Grant Money For Housing And Morale Boost
by Philip Gizzi
(Ladera Ranch, CA, USA)
I'm a 47-year-old accident disabled former Local 433 Ironworker. I'm married and the father of two boys, 20 and 15.
I was injured on January 8, 2008 in a work accident. I sustained a spiral fracture to my left ankle and a back injury. I also have a work-related severe hearing disability.
I attend weekly sessions with my psychologist. I have not been able to accept my disability, which has caused me severe depression and anxiety.
I am having a very difficult time with my disability; it has caused me to feel helpless, betrayed and worthless.
I am not capable of returning to work. My severe hearing impairment makes it difficult to communicate. It is irritating not hearing an individual speak.
I am unable to hear the TV or my children's words. My hearing prevents me from going out in public because people misunderstand when I cannot hear them speaking. It becomes offensive.
My physical injuries prevent me from walking and standing for a long period. I was forced to short-sale my home and move to a small apartment.
I attend weekly sessions with my psychologist to help cope with my disability, but it only lessens my depression temporarily.
I am struggling with my disability, and find myself thinking negatively and irrationally, always worried about my future, and thinking about my past.
My goals for retirement have become nonexistent; I have lost my pension and retirement. I had planned to provide for my sons to attend college, but I had to exhaust my savings and everything I had to keep afloat.
My two boys, 20 and 15, have been devastated by the alteration in our lives. I have always been a good provider, father, husband, and now feel useless.
My youngest, who is having the most difficult time, is accusing me for my injury and how it has altered our lifestyle. It makes me feel like I failed my family.
I am unable to pay for health insurance and I'm worried about my wife's health. June 16, my wife was rushed to emergency with symptoms of losing consciousness.
The hospital performed a CAT scan that showed nothing was wrong. I have incurred medical bills I cannot pay because of this.
Expenses like this are a continuing concern for me now, and in the future. I can't see any way of making it, as I am unemployed, disabled and with no means of transportation.
In addition, I am having a difficult time meeting my monthly obligations: rent, utilities, wife's car payment, food and so on. I have student loans that I am unable to pay.
I have made attempts to regain my pride, and I've sought out job opportunities to supplement my SSDI, but nothing has been a substitute for what I have lost.
Nothing even comes close.
Becoming disabled is demoralizing and I have no motivation and direction of life. My disability has had a profound effect. I feel my disability was catastrophic to my life
I am looking for grants, or any kind of financial assistance with housing and with health insurance. I need new computer equipment to help me look for work at home jobs.
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