Friday, June 10, 2011

Job Rehabilitation?

I have come such a long way but things are just not quite the same as they used to be anymore, and I don't know what I can do for work now.

I had an intake appointment yesterday with a government sponsored  Vocational Rehabilitation Program.

I am nearing the end of my time in occupational therapy.  My therapist and my social worker helped me fill out a ton of paperwork to see if I could get into this program. I had to find a lot of information about my past work and education and I had to go and get a recommendation from my doctor as well as from my rehab program team.  We got the applications in months ago and I got a letter booking me for this intake appointment  to see IF I am a good for for the program.

I want to wake up in the morning and have somewhere to go where I will be useful and have a bit of structure to my day.  A paycheck wouldn't hurt either.

I have not worked for a very long time now. I stayed home to take care of family members including my father through his long battle with congestive heart failure. After he passed away I went back to college aiming at a new career doing website development and  design. I was taking my time and enjoying my classes as a part time student. I had only 2 courses left when I got sick. I tried to go back and take one of the courses a few months after I got out of the hospital, convinced that I really didn't have any cognitive problems and that I would soon get over this health glitch. Nope. I needed to drop the class; I was exhausted and lost, and I didn't know what was going on in the class.

The intake person for the Vocational Rehab Program was very nice. She said there was no reason to assume that I would not qualify for the program but that they were not actually sending out confirmations until the very end of August!

She explained that they will do some testing to look for my new strengths and interests, They can combine that with my past work experience and help me come up with a plan for getting employment. They can help with eveything from writing resumes to sending me for training and to job placements so I can get some experience and references.

All and all I feel pretty good about it. At first I was NOT happy about having to wait until the fall-- I wanted to get on with it as soon as occupational therapy is over. Now I am thinking that maybe I have worked so hard at occupational therapy over the past two and a half years that I deserve a summer vacation!

clip art from Philip Martin


Anne Alagna said...

I find it difficult to wait on other people's timelines. It takes me a long time to get to the point where I am ok and ready to move ahead and when I am waylaid, it puts me back into a cycle of questioning the decision in the first place and reopens all the anxiety I had conquered to get to that place to begin with. When I make a decision, I have to act on it quickly or my mind finds ways to rationalize it as having been an improper choice and knock it off the options list.

At this point, I havent worked since 08, when I left my job in ecommerce management to have a nervous breakdown, have a teenager get kicked out of home for the good of the rest, have another teenager get progressively worse with her bipolar2 and eventually flip out to the tune of 9 months+ in hospital after hospital... a few broken bones in the younger kids, emotional issues from expended family, all dragging my sorry excuse for a nervous system through more hell until the kid turned 18 and moved out, the family issues agreed to be ignored and other things began to heal.

I feel like I am perched on the edge of a new life but with the trash bags of an old life sitting beside me, trying to figure out what to do now. Job rehabilitation? Thought rehabilitation? Habit rehabilitation. Something has to change and the change has to be acceptable, doable and managable.

And I sit here, just turned 40, wondering if everyone's lives are this crazy or if I really just messed mine up big time.

Suzanne said...

Hi Linda,

Like you and I have discussed in the past, several times, it's about moving forward. So, if something comes up before the Job Rehabilitation then go for it. You've been improving steadily and you're capable of so much. You've already proven that.

I'm working and it wasn't planned but I'm really just supporting my husband with his job creating a company newsletter. My knowledge of utilizing Illustrator and Photoshop, plus prior work I've done in Corporate Communications are literally paying off right now.

And today? I feel horrible from lack of sleep but I find that I am able to take breaks where needed. Plus, doing the work I love to do is therapeutic...I don't notice pain as much when I'm creating :)

Elizabeth, John and Jack said...

Sounds like a great program. Summer vacation sounds even better. Enjoy!

Glynis Jolly said...

Those intake counselors always put me on edge. Yes, they're nice and courteous but so far I've always have gotten the ones with the fake little laugh as if they're not quite comfortable talking to me.

You're full of common sense and intelligence. I'm sure they want to help you. You'll make they look terrific.

Linda said...

Ann... yes peoples lives really do get that crazy and no you have not just really messed up yours!

In the past I have worked with caregivers and what a price they pay, but the only way to keep going forward to to work on meeting your own needs first. They teach you too in first aid to survey the scene and take your own safely into account first. If you are hurt you will not be able to help anyone else. Same is true for you.

You moving forward and feeling good about what you do with your "new life" will just help you return to your family with new eyes and a refreshed heart.

Not only that, but our actions are the model that the people in our lives look to. Let them see a strong lovely woman who is going out there looking for joy in her life!!

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