Monday, April 16, 2012

Take Care

"Do you want to take care of Mrs. J, Mr. J's wife, right now?"

My greeting to TAP (Transitional Assistance Program) class for those exiting the Navy in the near future. "Mr. J," my husband, had been called away from class by the Emergency Department. The class coordinator explained that "Mr. J" had one hour to take care of the issue or he was out of the class.

Advocate that I am for injustice, I tried explaining that there was no one else for the Emergency Department to call for his service. This resulted in the business that this problem was between him (Mr. J) and his Commanding Officer and that plenty of Commanding Officers take this class by the way and are capable of clearing their schedule. I rebutted, "He has no choice. He's the only one." It went on, but you get the idea.

"Mr. J's" Commanding Officer, by the way, runs the hospital. My guess is that he would expect "Mr. J" to respond to the emergency department's request just as he is expected to respond to hospital's needs at every other hour of the day. I'm sure "Mr. J" would like a break from this yoke too.

I let go of the bureaucratic policies, not people first attitude and attempted to consider the information being presented. I'm either getting really good at putting aside unpleasantries, or I need more practice since the universe keeps delivering opportunities.

Here are some things that were hammered home, to do to prepare for retirement:

  • You need a personal financial plan with a budget, achievable goals, an estimate of your income and other taxes, and a retirement investment plan that pays better than the current bank rates. You can start at forty, but it helps to start earlier.

  • There is a lot of paperwork to attend to when retiring, but if you don't take care of the paperwork, you may not get paid.

  • Anything requiring an official signature will require the Active Duty Member to do it or a power of attorney.

  • Nothing happens without a line of accounting, but I knew that (^ー^)ノ

  • I'd really like to wash my hands of the whole Navy business at this point. I'm not feeling any organizational love, but I'm bound to it. Navy friends and other friends have offered up thoughts, suggestions, and a few "Been there." One suggestion was to contact our Congressman which I can't quite get my head around because nothing procedurally has been wrong in our case. This is simply how the system works, and we earmark no special treatment.

    Life isn't fair, but it doesn't mean it should be this way. I'm not sure what to do about it, but if it comes to me, I'll share.

    "Do you want to take care of Mrs. J, Mr. J's wife, right now?"

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