Could I be kind? If ‘time immemorial• trended on Twitter than you would see a lot of Twitter posts from an endless array of people all saying something that meant something to somebody out there about how ‘long• time immemorial would last, what they would do about it in the ‘meantime• but with no ‘end• in sight, to time immemorial right?Now take that thought and apply it to a VA claim which a former member of the U.S. Armed Forces makes with the Department of Veterans Affairs for injuries and/or illnesses the member suffered while serving on active duty, or suffered in increasing intensity after active service was completed, before the member finally realized that some of his post-service illnesses which seem to have ‘cropped up• again to have a direct impact on his ability to work well or even function mentally on an even keel in civilian society; or, even mild injuries or illnesses like sprained wrists, strained backs, trick knees, hairline fractures, or respiratory problems, sleep problems, elevated blood pressure, thyroid symptoms, which he dealt with best by suffering in silence for the most part while on active duty, he now must deal with more stringently as he is taking on more unique problems as a civilian than perhaps he ever did as a military member, and the stress is getting to him to do something about his dilemma.Now as a civilian and perhaps as a husband and father, he cannot ignore or trivialize symptoms and surgery recommendations from his doctor, he needs help and advice and be proactive about what he must do.He then has a feeling he must do something about it all and get help from medical providers, and think things over with his family or friends before visiting his friendly local veteran service officer downtown.He has a long way to go before that claim is really complete and a final decision rendered as to compensation, because it is far beyond just processing a claim, but denials, missed-steps, mishandling, re-processed, re-handled, re-done, appealed, re-appealed at multiple levels, or even strange disappearance of paperwork submitted when given to veteran service officers or after mailing to claim handlers at the regional office.You can never lose hope though. Eventually, even if it takes years or years off your life in the process, your ‘claim• will make its way through the Regional Office you submitted. Your claim could eventually wind up at an officer in Washington D.C. where a special appeals process awaits you administered by a specially trained judge in veterans claims who has too many thousands of cases to get to your case any time soon.I can’t go into a lot of the rules about how the VA does things because they tend to work the rules in their favor and often you get bad advice from the people you are counting on to assist or represent you in your claim.It is possible that your claim can go through all the hoops more quickly than the typical experience of say 3 to 4 years before resolution, your get your ‘award• and even ‘back compensation• if there are no more appeals and no more claims on your part.Within a year or two you may actually attain a decent rating for your service-connected illnesses or injuries and be satisfied with the outcome and the award, but that is the exception and not the rule.The main thing is to take care of your health and do your best to limit your stress especially the stress caused by going through multiple layers of paperwork and filings with the VA, not to mention the exams and re-exams, and confusing specter of letters explaining things to you sent from the VA which you are at a loss to really understand.If you find you cannot trust someone like a veteran service officer to work your claim efficiently, you can do it yourself which is difficult understandably. Some people find the only way to get it done without as much worry and trouble is to a hire an attorney which will cost you when the final determination is made, but may be worth it when you compare the cost of the stress you would face otherwise.