PIP assessment

Yesterday’s post did not mention my PIP assessment I had, as I did not want to drag away from what I was feeling that night in the previous post. It was a long day for me yesterday, as I was up at 5.45am. I was going to get up at 6am, but when I woke up then, I thought I’d get up. I was surprised I wasn’t tired with lack of sleep, but obviously, by the end of the night, I was knackered and drained by the time of the work scenario.
I was up early, as I had to compensate setting out earlier than normal as mum was coming with me this time. So I wasn’t alone.
When we arrived in Nottingham and literally around the corner from the place of where the assessment would take hold, we had a hot drink and a little something to eat, till it was nearer to time for my appointment. I did not lose my way this time and for going the right way this time, I could see there was more options to visit till appointment time. The cafe we had chosen was Tuckers, which was opposite the Kitty Cafe. The staff were nice and welcoming and we actually went back there after my assessment for lunch, before making our way home.

As you will know, I have been worried about the PIP assessment due to not feeling that the form suits people with a hearing loss. Also from what I have read and heard from people affected directly with regards to it, in which people who are entitled, lose it. On top of that, as you know, the first time it was cancelled and I did not know until I arrived there, in which I found it was them who tried to phone me, even though my PIP form clearly stated to only use my mobile number for texting, as deaf. They also did not book my Lipspeaker. So I had every right to feel concerned about this appointment.

After signing myself in and meeting my Lipspeaker, the first call was the toilet for me, then we made our way downstairs to wait in a private waiting room outside the room where I would be assessed. While waiting for my turn to be assessed, it was a chat with my Lipspeaker to get to know one another with not meeting her before and for her to know how I would like her to help me, finding out if I knew any sign and if I wanted her to use that too.

The assessment

When it was time to go in the room, I pointed to the chair for my mum to sit at and I sat next to her, facing my Lipspeaker and the woman who was to be assessing me. After the formalities were out-of-the-way, in which I decided I wanted to see if I could lipread and hear the assessor first and if not, then I would look at my Lipspeaker, for her to repeat what she had said.
I found the assessor had a tone of voice that was right for me, but there were times after trying to lipread her for a while that I did end up using the Lipspeaker to get it repeated. When my mum spoke to add her part, I relied on the Lipspeaker to tell me what she had said every time, as she was sat a little further back from me and I can’t lipread sideways on, on top that I don’t hear my mum as well now.
Some questions were a repeat that were already on the PIP form and some were new. This gave me a chance to add, or amend anything by doing this. Every time the assessor spoke to me, she always looked at me directly so I could see her face. She never covered it and when she asked some certain questions about my hearing loss, I felt with this and making sure she always looked at me when she spoke that she had awareness. I have read how some assessors have not been helpful and done tests that were not acceptable towards deaf, but I have never received anything in the assessment room that was not acceptable. She only asked questions, nothing else.
My assessment was under an hour and although it was relaxing in the room, I wasn’t fully relaxed because of questions I would know that would possibly come, when it came to talking about my depression and anxiety. I thought more questions were going to be asked than that with regards to my depression, so just when I thought I may not hold it  together on the subject she asked me, it was on to a different topic.
I did have tears in my eyes after a particular question about how I feel and why. I don’t know if it may have been obvious to her. It’s not nice saying how you truly feel in front of your own mum, that you wish you were dead and that I have thought these thoughts, I just not acted on them. I just instead wished that when I went to bed to sleep at night, that I did not wake up the next day.

My opinions after my own PIP assessment

As I have mentioned, staff are pleasant and so is the assessor. The environment was relaxing and welcoming, even though I was not relaxed. The assessor always looked at me when she asked me questions and never ever covered here face. She even used some sign herself when she spoke, which was nice. I have the confidence that what I said, is down on those notes, but because of how I feel about the PIP application process, I still wonder whether I will get it. The waiting will be long, because of the back log, so it will be many weeks before I know anything, so until then my DLA continues, till they make their mind up at DPW.

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Recent thoughts

I have only spoken out loud to one person, (my mum) about what I am about to say now here and that I have been doing some thinking of moving to Derby one day. This is because unlike where I currently live, should I apply for a disabled bus pass in the future, the process is simple and it costs nothing. But it is not just because of that, also I have felt and wondered by just going to another area, just for that feeling of a complete fresh start. Anxiety has held me back many times in the past though.
As a deaf blogger one time, when I talked about the application I filled in and the difficulties with it because on the form it does not allow my audiologist to fill it in and so I have to go to my doctor which results in paying him the time to fill in the appropriate part of the form to prove my hearing loss. The trouble is, my doctor does not have my up-to-date hearing loss details, because at the end of the day it is my audiologist I see. Many of my deaf friends and deaf readers when I  used to write my deaf blog, who lived in other areas, informed me that the process I have to go through to prove my hearing loss, it doesn’t happen where they live. One blogger, contacted me personally and said where he lives, it used to happen and advised me who to contact to challenge them, as he did and he got it changed.
Many years later, I decided to do what I was advised, talking to a fresh-faced person about the matter and feeling confident something would get done. This was last year, back in March. Earlier this year, I emailed for an update and since voted that person in. But I have heard nothing. What was the point in me voting if you are like everyone else and don’t care? That’s what it feels like as I am kept in the dark. I feel ignored, which was also what I added in another email recently and waiting to hear.
As it is the General Election today, I won’t be voting who I was originally voting for, that this party recommended, as I will vote for someone who did help me one time on a different matter.

On the same disability matter regarding my hearing loss at work, I am coming across some same issues that I get every year. Now although nothing has been said verbal yet, fresh papers have gone up regarding certain training and my name is on them even though I have done them online, where I am allowed to do them. But as my name keeps coming up regardless, I won’t be surprised if they ignore the conversation and try it again and so I have contacted the same person at work who helped me before. I hope to hear from her later when she is back.

Those that know me well will know that I hate coming to work as it fills me with anxiety and dread. When I am out into another job, it won’t come quick enough, which comes to my next topic in this post. I have seen a cleaning job of 32 hours per week and although nights is not something I really wanted to do again, there is nothing stopping me and I cannot stop thinking about it, so I have applied. Wish me luck. 🙂

On the subject of moving to possibly moving somewhere new, are there readers here that have done it? I am particular interested in those who live on their own like me and have done this.