This is what disability looks like sometimes. You don’t see the cane I had to use or the drugs I had to take hours later to get through the rest of the night. You can’t see my past strokes, fatty liver, degenerative spine condition, stomach issues, osteoarthritis in my hand, knee and feet or the chronic pain caused by the autoimmune disease I battle.
Despite it all, I work a full-time job every day, signing in early and only leaving when the work is done. I go the extra mile to fix issues that could effect the overall product. And, I make sure to send messages to make sure everyone is on the same page with delays, missing items, incorrect information, etc… . I’ve completed nearly impossible workloads when we’re short staffed too. Yet, my one request, to continue working as I have for more than three years, has been rejected.
I didn’t think I’d ever be forced to risk my health to continue to do what I’ve excelled at and enjoyed doing. I figured the ADA protected me. But, I was wrong. So, I have few choices since quality insurance and an income is essential to keep me thriving.
I’ve learned that loyalty, hard work and teamwork aren’t always appreciated or rewarded; they’re sometimes taken for granted. I also understand how essential it is to always give yourself and out, which means creating alternate means to ensure you have the quality of life you want today, tomorrow and in the future. This is crucial because you never know when your circumstances will change and you need to switch up your plans.
#chronicpain #autoimmunedisease #chronicillness #spoonie #invisibleillness #rheumatologist #jointpain #journalism #osteoarthritis #wfh #ADA