Friday, November 5, 2010

Daddy's home( not my Dad, the kids Dad and my hubby)

                              Big news, Marty is off work for the next three months!

 One of the stipulations Stanford had was they wanted Marty to take some time off work.  They felt this might help improve his bloodwork and stablize him. As you all know, Marty didn't really want to stop working and I fully supported him. In July he switched schedules and things started to go downhill fast. We were sleeping two to three hours a day, trying to do his dialysis. He wasn't sleeping due to fluid overload and even his co-workers started to ask questions. Then the final nail was the dreaded call from Stanford taking him off the list.

 So October 4th was Marty's last day at work until January 4th. He can only take six months off total and we wanted him to have time left for after the transplant. The second problem was, he only had enough sick time to cover one month off. Good thing we pay into two long term disability plans, right? WRONG.

Because he is a state employee, he doesn't qualify for state disability which pays 80 percent  what we get anyway due to furloughs. He has to supplement the 50 percent with time( sick and holiday) to cover the other 50 percent. We thought, no problem, we will just use one of the long term plans to get 100 percent. WRONG! the plan only pays a 60 percent maximum and then if you get 50 percent from the state it only pays 16 percent. WOW! What a shock to us and a huge blow.

Marty had little time left on the books after three years of being sick. He had to burn many sick days when he was feeling sick while working. He didn't squander them or blow them, he was really sick on those days. Something he has never experienced in his entire working career.

So, we decided that I should get a job to help out. But, how do I take a job when I will have to quit the minute he gets the call? I just would have to be fired, something that has never happened to me. But, what else could we do short of Marty going back to work and not taking time off?

We set up a time bank at his work, hoping his co-workers would maybe donate extra time. Marty and our friend Matt both thought that would not happen. Due to furloughs and other co-workers being sick, people are holding on to their time.

Yesterday while filling out disability papers and speaking to human resources, Marty found out that his co-workers had donated 230 hours to him. Enough to cover the three months off and then some! Praise God for answered prayers and for the kindness of others. We both were overwhelmed and touched by the generosity of his co-workers.

This lifted a huge burden and allows me to continue to stay home and help Marty. Scheduling appointments, pharmacy issues and doctor's appointments fill up our days. On top of that, four dialysis treatments a day and finding a new schedule for those.  It has been easier with him not working and trying to schedule around that. I think we both feel a weight has been lifted off our chests.

So we are now trying to get on a routine, Marty is growing a beard and helping out with schooling. If you are one of my friends that I call and you haven't heard from me lately, I am not ignoring you but just trying to establish a routine. Four people home all day together takes a lot of time and effort to settle in.

That's part of the news. I will share the rest on Sunday which will be the eve of the third anniversary of waiting for transplant.

Thanks for praying, reading, writing, commenting and supporting us these past three years. We feel the love and care from our support system.