Jan 29, 2020 08:43PM Daisy613 wrote:
I work for a large local hospital in the fundraising department. I was there for just under 2 years when I was diagnosed with cancer, first thought to be stage 2 but ended up being stage 4. It was in my breast, lymph node under my arm, several lymph nodes in my chest and one outside my liver. I told my boss and asked him to tell leadership and I gave permission to share the news with my department because I knew I'd be out of the office a lot and I needed support and patience.
My job is entirely online, I manage the financial donor data base. I run all the lists for mailings and events, determine the best methods for tracking data in the database. I made it clear that my coworkers could call my cell phone or email me whenever they needed something.
I had chemo for a year, once every 3 weeks. It was brutal. Chemo was on Thursdays (which I took off) and then I worked until about 3 on Friday when the effects really kicked in. I'd spend the weekend in bed and on Monday if I couldn't get downstairs, I'd try and work from bed. I did this for a year and participated in meetings via phone.
Year 2, I was only receiving Herceptin infusions every 3 weeks. and I started going into the office a few times a month for major meetings mostly. But they started pressuring me to come in more often so I upped it to once a week and then twice a week. We agreed I would come in on Wednesdays or Fridays so the staff would know when I was in if they needed me.
Year 3, It's wearing on me to even go in twice a week. My energy levels are so low (I have low blood pressure and low iron). Sometimes I have trouble sleeping, I am incredibly depressed (worried about money, dying, losing my job, my physicially and psychologically sick adult daughter who lives with me). I have massive anxiety and have come to realize that part of it is because I went from finding a lump to having full blown stage 4 cancer in a very short time. About a month ago, I had a meeting with my boss who brought up coming into the office more frequently. He began by saying, "It's been 3 years now and you're through the worst of it" and ended the conversation with "You know I support you if you find another work opportunity". He has apologized since I brought it up to him but there's been a clear shift in the relationship. I have now had my doctor fill out the paperwork requesting accomodations to allow me to work from home 3 days a week. However, today I sent in a new form requesting it be full-time. The stress of going into the office and the energy used completely wipes me out. Plus, it's an hour commute.
I need my job. I live paycheck to paycheck and am supporting my daughter. I actually love my job too. I just need the flexibility to sleep in a little sometimes, to take a break and lie down, maybe even work from bed. And I need my boss to be supportive and not say stupid things like the worse is over to someone with stage 4 cancer. Does he know what stage 4 means? Does he understand what the worse thing about it is?