This is going to be a really long post so I apologize in advance.
For the past week I have been sick. Really sick. I had a fever of 103.8, the chills, body aches, chest pressure/pain, sore throat, you name it. Plus I have a yeast infection, so it's really itchy and irritated. Long story short I went to the ER twice, once for the high fever because I was paranoid and once because I first went to urgent care hoping for some meds for chest pain/maybe an x ray to be sure it wasn't pneumonia, but noooo they went chest pain? You're having a heart attack!! So they did an ECG, saw my T wave abnormality that I ALREADY knew about from when I did ECT a couple years ago, but didn't care to listen to me when I said it was nothing and told me I needed to go to the hospital immediately, calling EMS. So now on top of the pile of existing medical bills I have to pay for an ambulance ride that was completely unnecessary. I'm more than a little frustrated and upset about that.
Anyways, that makes 5+ weeks since January that I've had to take time off due to medical reasons. My work has been remarkably understanding up to this point. But this week I found out about a policy (I'm not sure how I didn't know about it?) that I guess my boss has not been enforcing with me because of my medical situation. But now HR is getting on her back so she has to get on my back. It's regarding time off and PTO. Basically, if you are a full-time employee you must use PTO anytime you need time off, even for doctors appointments or medical leave. If you don't have any PTO, you won't be able to request time off. For emergencies obviously they would work around that. But with me, where I've been out so much and it has been for emergencies, the line is blurred. But they're cracking down on that policy.
I had a meeting with our HR rep and my boss yesterday, where I found out my company is too small to offer FMLA benefits. So that doesn't help me. But I'm at a point where if I stay full-time I won't be able to take ANY more time off, not even for doctors appointments or emergencies. Well idk how they could argue with me about emergencies. Idk. But the point is, I've taken far too much time off for a full-time employee, it's putting stress on them and my coworkers for having to pick up the slack, and it's limiting their ability to take care of clients because I haven't been very reliable in coming in to work. Not my fault, I can't control being physically or mentally ill, but it is what it is.
So my options are: 1. Quit, focus on my health, then reapply in say the fall where my boss would hire me back immediately. Not really an option, bipolar disorder isn't a one and done kind of deal. And it's not like I can control when im gonna get the flu so... yeah. 2. Stay full-time and hope to God I don't get sick again or have another mental health crisis. If I do, I will 100% get written up for it. I've received my verbal warning. Just frustrating because that's not really something I can change, it's out of my control. Or 3. Drop down to part-time where I will have more flexibility. The problem with that is I am so financially unsteady right now I need all the money I can get. I have no idea how im going to pay rent this month, I have to replace the brakes on my car, I need dental work done, I have to pay medical bills and my phone bill and gas and food and utilities and therapy, therapy, therapy, so much therapy. It adds up quick. And I have no savings- I've used all of it in earlier months for emergencies. I have $500 to my name. I guess that's better than zero, look at the bright side huh? I'm just stressed, stressed, stressed. No idea how I'm going to get through the next month.
This whole situation has made me really face the possibility that I might need to get on disability. Because I'm just not making it as is. My HR rep says I averaged 22 hours a week the past 3 months because of all my time off. That's half what I'm supposed to be working. But that takes months. And I've been working full-time, which typically doesn't grant you disability. But again, 22 hours? That's not full-time. But on paper it's been full time. Ugh. I don't even know.
My dad says I should get a second job. I actually applied to a couple and have already been asked to come in for an interview. But the more I think about it the more stressed I get, I don't know how I'll manage IOP, my current job, individual therapy, psychiatry appointments, AND another job. I think part-time at about 32 hours a week (the max) is my best bet.
I'm not sure if anyone is going to read this. But if you made it this far, you're the real MVP. Any advice is appreciated, I need all the resources and advice I can get. I'm open to any suggestions. I'm just between a rock and a hard place rn.
Oh and I went running tonight to clear my head. My chest hurt SO bad. I guess I'm not 100% recovered from my sickness.
I also weighed less today than I have since high school... 126 lbs. I'm 5'8". I was weighed at the gynecologist. I think I'm losing weight because I'm not eating 3 meals a day like I should be. It's more like 2. I hate to admit it but part of me is happy about that. But part of me knows it's not healthy to think like that. If I'm not careful I'll pick up anorexic tendencies like in 2019 when I was running for SUU.