A difficult decision

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I made a very difficult decision today. I have decided to stop working at my 2 part time jobs. First, the backaches are getting worse. I missed Tuesday this week as I still had the backache I got at work last Tuesday. I get backaches from things that shouldn't effect me. Vacuuming, taking wet clothes out of the washer, washing dishes or windows, carrying things that aren't really heavy. Any motion with my right arm sets the backache off. I’ve done the xrays, therapy thing, pain pills and muscle relaxers, chiropractic sessions, and deep massage. 2 years ago, I even had sets of 3 trigger shots each into my back muscles. Nothing has worked.

There are other issues, too. I will see my primary doc tomorrow. I want her to confirm that I have Raynauds Syndrome. My fingers and feet get cold, the circulation stops, my fingers get white and hurt. My feet burn and it hurts to walk on them. It's not life threatening but my Tuesday job is in an auction arena with 20 overhead doors open for 4 hrs - in all kinds of weather. Not good for Raynauds. I am one in a group of 4 ladies that were assigned to the same area when I went there. I will miss them terribly. But we’ll do lunches.

My other job is at a facility for adults with mental illnesses. I love my residents but some of the work I do causes the backaches. I helped do resident laundry last Sunday, checked meds, checked & reset clocks for daylight savings, up and down stairs. I’ll miss all of them. But I can visit.

Then there's my balance. I've been a little 'off balance' lately. Running into the corners of walls. Having to steady myself while walking. It's not normal for me and it's worrisome.

In the 80s and 90s, I had many neurological tests done as they suspected lupus, MS and other similar diseases. Similar symptoms as now. All tests came back within normal range. So, they tagged me w/fibromyalgia. The antidepressants I got for the depression also relieved the fibro. But that balance problem is back. And I have the soreness in my muscles, again.

And there's the asthma and breathing issues. Asthma in the dry cold weather. Asthma if I try to exert myself in summer or even in the house. I run out of breath so easily. I'm going to request breathing tests that I've also had before. They came back within normal range, too.

I was fortunate to have been able to retire at 58. I had planned ahead. My Social Security started in May ‘09. Fortunately, in the mid-80s, I took out a disability/loss of income policy. I've collected on it just once before. All I've been doing is paying the premiums. I notified them today, have been assigned an adjuster and will be receiving my forms in the mail within days. After a 90-day waiting period, I will begin collecting monthly disability income.

I have cried this afternoon at the thought of having to notify my employers that I can no longer work. I have cried this afternoon because I will miss my friends and residents. I have cried because I am scared. My son told me “It’s time, Mom.” While I will have time to finish de-cluttering, I’ll probably have to hire people to do my electrical, plumbing, painting, floors, etc. All things I’m quite capable of doing myself. It’s similar to giving up one’s independence. Becoming dependent on others.

So, I’m going to pull up my bootstraps, as my Grandma would say, and stop fretting and feeling sorry for myself. I have endured worse! Apparently, It’s just the next step in “growing up.”

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    just gave up my car so i can relate,ive been crying alot emoticon
    2392 days ago
    Wow! I thought I had it tough. I miss you my friend.
    2751 days ago
    Hope you're feeling better soon!
    2776 days ago
    Well as you know my dear, I live with Chronic Pain. I know how difficult it can be. I know how it feels to not be able to go back to work, and missing the people. I miss some of the people. I miss what I did. But know this. As difficult as it it, in the end you will be home taking care of what needs to at your pace, and look back and realize that you really did/are making the right decision for your body. You are important and you have to care for you. I hate having to ask for help, I know being dependant to any degree on others is a horrible feeling. But you know what....if gives me more time to work on what I can handle more at my leisure. I don't have to work through pain, or asthma or allergies. I can allow myself breaks now...AND YOU WILL TOO. Good luck love and let me know if you need anything.
    2842 days ago
    Thank you, both Lindas. When I'm feeling better, I hope to be able to get into activities at the Y, volunteer or spend time at the Senior Center. I also have a great neighbor who wants to re-establish our weekly game night. Take care. margi. emoticon
    2842 days ago
    I was 40 when I had to retire from teaching students with severe behavior problems due to a severe nervous breakdown. I think jobs give us a sense of purpose and of being needed. But right now, it seems that your purpose needs to be to take care of yourself and that it's ok. You can always visit or even volunteer when you get things straightened out. I hope to be able to do that someday too. emoticon

    2843 days ago
    I think now would be a good time to check in with some of your work friends and get some more support. Maybe visit your old group home to visit some of the residents you love. You need some contact with others besides those on the computer. I hope you feel better soon, I'm praying for you and I love u and you're a great friend. think about good memories you have and plan something for the future so you have something to look forward to.

    Hugs,and prayers
    2843 days ago
    I'm ok now with giving up work. And my disability payments have started. I thank you for your comments and concern. It was very kind of you.

    I'm on the boards regularly replying to many posts. I don't normally check here unless someone has replied - like you. Thanks. margi. emoticon
    2843 days ago
    I haven't seen a recent post from you. Hope you are doing well. I liked Karen15552's remark of "when one door closes, another opens". I believe that totally. I know you can do this and you have great support from your son and from the SP group. Please keep in touch!
    2843 days ago
    AAhh, I can sure identify with your feelings about having to give jobs, etc. up because of your health. I think that the time comes for some of us to concentrate on taking care of ourselves primarily instead of others. You are so fortunate to have such a caring son, too. Is there anything that you enjoy doing for recreation now that you've given up your jobs? I am disabled but I found that I can crochet different items for myself or others. Another activity that I love is scrapbooking. I get together with other women and we create the scrapbook pages, talk, and eat together. So....what do you like to do that you CAN do? emoticon
    2851 days ago
    Look at it as an opportunity to help people who are having a hard time dealing with the same things - it hurts and it is sad, but you have a very encouraging spirit that comes through your posting - someone out there desperately needs you, and the Lord will bring that person to you. Things look and seem bad because we can't see and understand the reason at the moment - but in the future we can look back and understand why we had to go through the things we did to get to where we are. God bless you.
    2853 days ago
    Keep hanging in there. It sounds as though you are making the right decision for yourself, even if it is a difficult one.
    2928 days ago
  • SMILES4383
    It's definitely tough living with chronic pain.
    Have you ever tried a PAIN CLINIC?
    They sometime work wonders.

    Wishing you a positive week...
    2951 days ago
    Thanks, Nancy. I'm still at the crying stage. I talked to my son again. He just said to do it. I've worked long enough and hard enough. No use working through pain. But it's rather like you said - I'll give it to you but don't you dare take it away from me.

    I don't understand why I'm so sad about this. And I don't want my son Jim to feel bad that he can't help me; he lives in another state.

    I'll keep in touch. emoticon
    2960 days ago

    Comment edited on: 3/18/2010 8:13:08 PM
    I've had to let go of a lot since being diagnosed with fibromyalgia. My children, meaning well, don't let me do anything physical around the house, which irks me to no end. It's one thing if I choose not to, but don't tell me I can't.

    I understand how you're feeling. If you need to talk, we can arrange it.


    2960 days ago
    Thank you, Karen. I admit to having a control issue. It started when my son died; it was from SIDS but I felt responsible.

    After that, losses and change not under my control have been difficult. If I want to give something away, I'll give it away. But I HATE losing - family, friends, things, jobs, independence. And don't anyone dare TAKE anything away from me.

    I think you have made me think about why this is so upsetting to me. One would think I would be happy; not to have to work and have extra income coming in. It doesn't work that way with me. Thank you again, so much. emoticon margi.
    2960 days ago
  • KAREN15552
    I can relate to your pain in having to let go of things you love but can no longer do.

    You will be lonely for awhile but maybe you can do what I did and keep saying "When one door closes another one opens."

    Do your best to relax and remember and be thankful for the good times and that now it is time to move forward.

    It is painful.....but it will pass.

    Hugs and prayers for you! emoticon
    2960 days ago
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