Thursday, December 1, 2011

I'm glad I can't get fired for being sick

Good Lord, it never ends around here! It started with the hospitalization in June when I was off work for a week. (Side note:  I can't read those posts any more. I just about had a panic attack now because I reread them when I was linking to them. Gah.) I don't have any sick time built up due to having two maternity leaves and two children with ridiculous susceptibility to daycare germs within the first three years of my career, so I didn't have enough time to cover that absence. I think we made that work with me coming in early, staying late, and working a few hours from home (I don't really remember for sure, though. That whole period is a bit fuzzy).

Next, I have my surgery and only take a few days off because I just don't have the time, and unpaid time is never appealing. I end up having to take off an extra day that I hadn't budgeted for because I just couldn't go in. We worked that out, and managed to cover my trip to NC, which I booked long before I scheduled the surgery, and should have had plenty of vacation time for. It required me to come in an hour early for a week or so and do work over my vacation.

Then I get back from NC and get put on bed rest for two weeks because my ass isn't healing. And I literally only have about 30 minutes of sick time to my name. I figured I would have to take any time I couldn't work from home unpaid. Luckily, the administrator had mercy on me and advanced me vacation time to cover my time off (the boss was out of the country at the time and couldn't make that call). When the boss came back, he approved the vacation advance (because you can't advance sick time), and it almost made me cry when he realized he advanced me ALL of my vacation time for next year. I really, really, REALLY hope I don't have to use it all on my ass (or, frankly, any other body part).

So then, I get back this week. I've been coming in early (no easy feat when you have to get an adult, a preschooler, and a toddler up, ready, and out the door by 6:30 AM) and working from home to try to make up as much of the advanced time as I can (because, DUDE, that's my vacation! I don't have any grand plans, but I'd like to be able to take off, like, Christmas Eve or Good Friday or a random mental health day). And, of course, the boys start puking. I thought Will did it last night because he had choked on something, so they went to daycare today, where Rob barfed. Which meant that I had to leave work at noon to get them. I've got another hour and half to put in tonight to make up my time. Thankfully, B is staying home with them tomorrow (which is almost worse because all of him time off is unpaid), so I don't have to worry about that or about anyone at work thinking I'm abusing the system (though I'm sure there are some who do all ready).

I know I shouldn't bitch about having to work at home because I rarely have to do it - and I wouldn't if it were for some project that needed to get done or for a trial or something - but I hate that I'm constantly scrambling to cover my...I was going to say "ass" here, but I really wasn't going for literal...hours. I hate that the kids seem to get sick with stay-home-from-daycare stuff ALL. THE. TIME. and that I've been "sick" so much this year. At this rate, I figured I'm scheduled for my first unencumbered vacation day in August of 2014, when I'm bumped up a seniority grade and get an extra week of vacation.

This is nothing compared to those who don't have the luxury of paid time off, but it's still a pain for me and something that I have to think about and measure and calculate constantly now to make sure I can make it to my doctors' appointments or pick up sick kids. Thank God for FMLA (and for the fact that I haven't used up all my FMLA time for my twelve-month period), or I'm pretty sure I'd be out of a job.

Now if only I can keep him from firing me for non-health related things...


Doing My Best said...

That sounds SO STRESSFUL =(!! I will keep my fingers crossed that your boys have a HEALTHY winter, and that you do not run out of CDP =)!

Amanda @ There Are Two Sides said...

That's great about all of your V time~and I totally get you on using all of your V and S time...the first 2 years at UT was was under 10 hours for the longest time!

lifeofadoctorswife said...

Oh WOW. That is so much to deal with. As if being sick or dealing with sick kids isn't enough!

I hope that 2012 is the polar opposite - a totally healthy year.