May 2nd, 2017 was a day that I was home on FMLA. For those of you that don’t know, FMLA stands for Family Medical Leave Act. It allows employees in companies with larger employee sizes to be required to allow their employees to take leave when either themselves or their immediate loved ones are ill. Trust me, my company just LOVED that I had FMLA.
Today it hurts so bad that sometimes I think I would rather be dead than go through this for one more minute. But, I still have to drag myself out of bed and down to my neurologist’s office just to get copies of my old test results. Once I do that, I will then need to drive back down there again, after some undetermined amount of time as yet to be decided to pick up the hard copies “they can’t enter into the digital portal system”.
I have my appointment at NYU Langone next week and I need these copies of the tests for the doctor I am going to see. I am praying that this new NYU doctor will finally give me the hard answers I have been so desperately seeking the last 4 years.
I can’t face that the way I am now is the way that I will live the rest of my life. The thought is just too terrible to bear. The pain, exhaustion and mental instability – a perfect storm of sadness – are just too much, even for a tough as nails hardass like me.
I feel as if I have been cursed. This moment in time right now is almost too much too stand. Getting into a car accident that totaled my beloved Jeep last week was the first in the new set of weights holding me down. We had 6 more months for it to be paid off! The pain from it has pushed me to levels I didn’t know I had. I thought I hurt and ached before the accident. Now -my heavy duty cocktail of pain management medication isn’t even touching the worst of the pain. It’s a nightmare in itself.
So, I stay in bed (except to schlep back and forth to go get the darn test results), rest, watch bad TV and movies and just try to grit my teeth and deal with the pain.
I work to make money for the family, to then come home angry, exhausted and in pain all week. Then, i do nothing but rest on the weekends so I can do it all over again. I’m a wife and a mother – but right now I’m a shell of a human. And I just cannot keep doing this and expect to live through it.
The next day I am still in a huge amount of pain, but what else is new, so I go back to work, just like a dutiful worker bee. Once I get there I am called down to the HR department (nothing good ever comes from this), where I am told that I am no longer a salaried employee and that I’m now hourly.
You see, I am a manager. I am the VIP Marketing, CRM and Special Projects Manager (even I don’t know what it means except for the last word!) and if I don’t like it, well, tough. This little gem comes after I’ve been asking, demanding and sometimes pleading with my boss for a raise. I told him my family and I are in deep financial trouble. He tells me he understands, he knows how it is. He tells me how undervalued I am, that he sees how I shine and how he’ll help everyone else at the company see how much I shine too, just wait. I have heard this line about 20 times already. Do I get the raise he promised me over a year ago? No. I tell him what happened in HR and ask him if he knew, he said he did. HE KNEW! Mr Understanding knew they were doing this and cutting my already non-existent pay.
I get changed to hourly, which is against company policy, as all Supervisors and up are salaried employees. Now I know I am the only management in the entire sales department, at the very least, if not the whole company, that is an hourly employee. This is how my company and boss (who has cancer and totally gets the life with chronic illness for fuck’s sake!) treat me after 7 years of loyal work.
I’ve been on FMLA for a year and a half at this point, and they choose now to pull this stunt? Blatant freaking discrimination against me for being sick, and for being a strong woman who stands up for herself and says NO when I’m being taken advantage of. They have NO women in the executive management of my former company. They fired the only three they used to have.
I can’t keep living this life. It’s too hard and too painful. It’s a nightmare of epic proportions. So, I am going to have to quit working at all. This discriminatory move is the final straw. I talked it over with my husband and he completely supports it. He’s such a great husband, he has been pushing me towards it for some time now. The problem is money will be even more almost non-existent while we try to get me on disability. It will take like a long time to even get a cent from disability, but Rob (that’s my hubby) says it will allow me to heal. He is right -I desperately need to heal.
So, as of now I’m in a purgatory. Too sick to work, but according to disability too well to be officially disabled. I’m now in the appeals process working with a lawyer to try to get my disability because it is insane the reasons they denied me. So for now I chug along and try to keep my head above water. And you know what, I think I just might.