Submitted

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Yesterday, I submitted my application to the University of Washington Tacoma. It was exhilarating, yet nerve racking all at the same time. I can’t describe how proud of myself that I am for finally just doing it. I wrote out my personal statement and made a statement in regard to my less-than-average grades. I think they were strongly articulated and well written. I submitted my high school and college transcripts shortly after. Even the application fee, along with the transcript fees were expensive! It was about $85 altogether; money I had set aside for this and some of which was donated to me.

To think if I were still gambling, that money would have gone to a slot machine or to a blackjack table. I am happy that it is going to my greater purpose, rather than to a nasty addiction. Today is day 54 without gambling.

But now that the money is going to a good cause, we wait to see if my hard work has paid off. The school has an 85% acceptance rate, so my chances are fairly good that I will get in. I should find out if I got in [I hope] before the end of 2020. I must wait for my SAT results to come back first before I’ll find out the results of admittance.

Today was a decent day. I woke up sick and feeling like I couldn’t take a deep breath, so I went to the doctor and she said it was just a throat viral infection. (NOT covid or whatever Diego had not too long ago). They did a strep test just in case and it came back negative, but they will watch it for bacterial growth and see what happens. I have been. nauseated the past four days so I got a refill for anti nausea medication.

Then I finally have my mental health evaluation for disability determination. It was in a sketchy location; right across from the Mission, which is where a lot of homeless people reside. I paid for parking and prayed that my car wouldn’t be broken into. I waited for my appointment time slot and it was a younger nurse practitioner; she couldn’t be more than 28 years old.

I was gestured into a very white room with canvas sacks of coffee beans on the wall. I found it very odd. She said my answers to the following questions would be documented tonight, but the disability adjudicator would give me a final decision on my claim the following week. I was very agitated and distracted by the blinding white walls. She said she had no idea what the state had in my file, considering she was a vendor for the state and all she knew was that I was being evaluated for, “psychiatric issues.” I didn’t like that term, but I guess that’s what bipolar is; it’s a psychiatric issue.

The lady began the questioning with why I needed to receive disability for my psychiatric issue(s). I simply stated that I couldn’t hold down a job due to my bipolar disorder. She then goes on and asks if I suffer from depression and I say yes. She goes over the main symptoms of depression and as she reads off her list, I nod yes to each line item she lists. I think she thinks I was lying to her; I’m not sure why I got that impression. It was hard to tell her facial expression since we were both wearing facial masks that we’re required to wear in public in Washington State.

She asks if I was suicidal and I said yes. She asks if I have ever acted on a plan and I say I tried to. If it weren’t for my friend calling me, I would be dead. She asks for me to go into detail. I say I had a plan, I thought of suicide notes, I was at the execution location, I received a call back from my friend who talked me off the ledge. She asks if I ever cut myself and I say no. Have I ever attempted suicide and I say no. She types furiously onto the keyboard in front of her.

She then asks about the mania, the aggression, the delusions. I tell her incidences of all three. She types less aggressively now, but equally as fast and accurate. I stare at the space of white wall above the door. I no longer think she thinks that I am lying about any of this stuff. But I am under the delusion that she was plotting or planning something against me, and I wasn’t sure what. She asked how I did in elementary school and I said, “Above average”. She asked in, “Special ed or regular?”

It was an honest question; this was the first time she sounded almost sincere as I told her my past trauma a few questions before this one. I felt as though my response and her question was a test. I said, “Regular.” I smirked underneath my mask. She didn’t know me and obviously was not going to. She asked if I was seeing a therapist and I said not currently. She concluded with some memory “games”.

She said three words and asked me to remember them as I completed these other simple math games. She said the three words and asked me to count backwards from 100 in increments of three and I say 100 with confidence…97…94…91…88……..fuck this is hard! …85.

She then asks the same, but in increments of seven. I say 100 again in confidence, 93 just as quickly, and then I start using my fingers…. 86…………..79.

She asks me a few more so seemingly simple questions, and I got some right and some wrong. She asked me what the three words were from the beginning of the game. I say, “ball, pencil, shoe… no shoe wasn’t one of them, but it was an object of some sort like shoe, but I can’t remember which. The other two are right though.”

She dismissed me.

And I left.

Now I write the tales of some lady thinking that I was special ed. I called my mom afterwards and she for some reason thinks I’m going to receive disability, and so does Diego. When I told him the special ed part over the phone he was dying laughing. I thought it was pretty amusing myself.

But things are looking good. I should hear back from the bank about my job interview tomorrow, plus I got some errands to do, but I should hear back from disability by the end of the month at the very least and then hear back about school by the end of the year.

Much love,

Dani

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