Long Term Disability 😒

I’m tired and don’t feel like disguising what I have to say in a poem

For those of you that know it’s been a long week

Few weeks

Months

Entire 2018 really

Maybe more

I don’t know

I heard from my employer

I don’t even feel like cutting and pasting with my smart comments interjected

I’m standing at a precipice in my life

That I never thought I would be wavering on at 36 years old

Yet here I am anyway

Long term disability has been brought into the mix

I’ve been on Sick Benefits since April as my employer doesn’t have short term benefits

I now have to decide what’s the best decision moving forward

The key points are:

-My shitty attendance

-The unpredictability of MS

-The realization that my mental health has probably caused more lapses in employment than anything else

-Will anything change?

I’m under no illusions that having the best of intentions doesn’t equal being employee of the year

Nor does being an above average employee on the days you do show up

I get it

From an employers perspective

I’m more hassle than what I’m with

It’s always the same

Angela is amazing at her job

When she’s here

I’m tired of hearing that

Like I think my soul seriously can’t handle hearing that another time

Or feeling like I need to defend myself

Defend the ‘chronic absenteeism’

So long term disability is an option I’ve never wanted to pursue

For the following reasons:

-I fear falling into a depression being home

-I’m too young to be off of work

-I still want to work

-There are still so many kids I never had the opportunity to work with (even typing that had me ugly crying)

-I will feel embarrassment and shame at being off of work (that was difficult to admit but there it is)

-If I’m not a youth worker, what am I?

Some of the reasons may seem trite to you but it is what it is.

On the other side of the spectrum…

Reality of returning to my current employer:

-I will be under hard scrutiny

-I have no faith in an organization that has none in me

-The way I’ve been treated (though perhaps legal) has been insensitive, ignorant and disrespectful, nothing will change that

-They are holding the power of where they will place me and will continue to send me to the doctor for more medical documents until they get what they want

-As soon as I get a ‘pattern of absenteeism’ they’ll can me

-The stress of this will have a negative impact on me

The reality of finding a new job:

-Things will be great for awhile

-Once the honeymoon period is over and they notice my absences, it will start all over

-This isn’t about being negative this is about accepting my reality, and there will be absences. Lots probably.

-During a 6 month probationary period I can be canned easily

I’m curious as to how other people have come to the decision to stop working. Or hear from anyone who is off of work and their experiences with it. In other words, any feedback would be appreciated.

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25 thoughts on “Long Term Disability 😒”

  1. I know you have had one hell of a 2018 so far and I hope it will get better for you soon. I understand your concerns about the Long Term Disability, hell I had a hard time with Short Term in October. But you have to do what is best for your health sweetie. Your health is WAY more important than a job that does not have any empathy at all. I wish you the best of luck and I know this is not an easy decision, but I believe you are strong and wise enough to make the right decision! Lots of love Angela and I am always here for you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I hate that you are going through this – that goes without saying but I feel saying it ratifies the unfairness of it even if we cannot do anything about it why don’t we have the right to say ‘fucking hell this sucks’ – I pray like Alyssa that you find the right balance I know it may feel that you are giving up by going on disability but you’re not, I have many friends on long and short term and they do it because as Alyssa says, you have to put YOU and your health first, nothing else matters. If someone wants to judge you based on disability status then FUCK THEM they are not a friend (and that doesn’t mean you can judge yourself either because you need to be on your side). People’s success in life is how much they care and love and help others. In that sense you are always helping others and now is the time to consider yourself and do what is right for you. I believe you will make the right decision but I encourage you not to judge yourself for anything, let someone else walk in your shoes and see how they would cope, pah! It’s easy for others to think they know but nobody knows until they have been there. I’m on YOUR SIDE

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  3. I can’t answer your question Angela, but if you do take the LTD route, you can always write. You are a hell of a writer and I am sure you could write one hell of a novel. You could make your own hours, and still keep your mind engaged and sharp

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  4. I had a really hard time coming to terms with the fact that I couldn’t work anymore. Even once I made the decision, it took a couple of years before I could let go of the guilt and shame and focus on the new direction of my life. I feel you, it’s so hard loving your job and knowing you’re good at it but your body just won’t cooperate. FUMS!

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      1. Hi Angela,
        Sorry, I’ve been out of town. When I realized that I couldn’t perform my job to the best of my abilities and with fatigue and cog fog I was concerned about the safety of the kids (grade 1 teacher) if there were ever an emergency. It was the relapse that fried my brain, ie. never fully remitted, that was really the culminating factor. Before I would bounce back and feel totally fine, now it never leaves.

        I hope you’re making some progress in making this difficult decision. xo

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      2. Sorry I’ve been MIA. Thanks for your comment. It’s a tricky thing, that is, deciding when you’re no longer able to work. How do you feel not working?

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      3. Besides the obvious physical issues, the mental game has been the hardest. Our society has decided that there is only one way to prove your worth, and that’s economically. Three years on, knowing that I am so much healthier (though not healthy) because of my lifestyle, I have realised that looking after my health is my job, so that I can be as strong as possible for those I love. That’s not to say I don’t have my dark days, but I feel fortunate in so many ways so I make myself focus on those things.

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      4. I totally understand. I just walked out of ‘my’ classroom officially, and even though I haven’t been teaching for three years, it’s been a really hard day.

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  5. It was absolutely the best decision for my health though. Healing is slow but I’m way better than I was when I was still trying to work.

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  6. You need to do what’s best for your peace of mind , I’ll support you either way 😏

    Joey Paterno
    ________________________________

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