My boss sat me down for a talk again this morning. He's concerned about my health and the impact that it's having on the office. He's bothered by the "1 to 2 days off per month" I'm taking. (Reality: 1 full day and 2 half days in the last six weeks.) All my time off for doctor's visits. (One office visit so far this year.) And all the days I miss because of Remicade. (1 day or half day every 8 weeks.)
He started in with how much sympathy he and everyone at the main office feels for me, and how he wishes this never happened to me. At which point I burst into tears. I try to stay upbeat and positive, to not dwell on it, but I wish every day that this never happened. Then he suggested that it might be time for me to research the company's long or short term disability insurance, or social security disability. He said that he wanted to be sure that I would remain financially stable and maintain my insurance, and that they weren't going to "put me out on the street." But what is taking disability at this point except shuffling me out the door? It's not like I'm going in for surgery or something, with the hope of remission after healing. I plan to talk to my doctor about it, but I don't see how taking a leave of absence for a week or a month is going to make me all better. The meds help, but they haven't "fixed" me. Right now, I'm not sure I believe that there is a med out there that will do that.
I take my medicine, I try to eat right and exercise and get enough sleep. But I can't keep on top of a 40 hour a week job and then come home and do everything I need to do to take care of myself. I just can't. For most of the last year my game plan has been to make it to work as much as physically possible and hope I don't crash before the end of the week. In the last three weeks or so, I've missed some work and used that time/energy to grocery shop and cook a healthy meal. I feel a little better, the house isn't quite so filthy, but now the boss is on my back.
I can't do it all. I'm a single woman who lives by herself. My closest family is hundreds of miles away. There's no one I can depend on to pick up the slack. If I lose this job I'll lose my means of support and my insurance. I don't know how I'll find another job with this level of insurance, with the kind of schedule I can handle, and that will allow me to support myself. I'm afraid I'm going to end up moving 1000 miles away and living with my parents. I'm in my 30s. I'm afraid I'll end up dependent on them and sucking away their retirement savings. I've been on my own and financially independant since I was 21. I don't know if I can emotionally handle going back to living with my parents. But I feel like I'm one small nudge from falling down that hole.