A Momentary Pity Party

After struggling for over 4 years now with CHF, Asthma, Renal problems, Blood clots in my lungs 3 times, diabetes and now neck problems...I think I finally have to make that hard decision. 3 of my doctors this week have told me I'm done, I need to file for Social Security disability. I haven't worked a full week since October 2011 and I haven't been to work since the end of May. I've run through all the paid time I can take, so I'm now on unpaid medical leave, which does not hold my job...if I can come back in 4 months I have 30 days to find a position in the company and who is going to take someone with my attendance history. I lost my apartment the beginning of last month and had to move back in with my parents. And in the month I've been here I've been in the hospital twice. Today, my lung doctor said again....you are NEVER going to be able to work 8 hour days again...when you force it...you end up in the hospital. So, I have a choice....force things and not take care of myself or focus totally on taking care of me and my health. And that is quite a challange some times. And I am learning that dealing with two very elderly parents who have not cleaned in 2 years is a challange. But today...I feel sad. I feel like a failure. At 50, I finally had my own life, my own apartment, a good job, a new car.....I had it all and now it's gone. And I'm back to living in the back bedroom of my parents house. And sadly, they are not supportive at all. They don't realize I'm fighting for my life on a daily basis. My illness aren't deadly right away, but if I don't do what I know I should, I could die. And they don't seem to realize that. They also don't realize how very hard it is to give up and start down the journey of Social Security disability. And once I leave my job, I'll have to go on state medical. And hope and pray. Just feeling crappy tonight.

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I am also in my 50s. The hardest part for me was accepting I could no longer do what I used to do, what others my age do. Going on disability can be a slow road, so get started. Even though your parents are not supportive, they are letting you live in their home. And as you say they are very elderly, obviously they could die too. Even with a disabilty you can become a support system for them, by helping around the house, making meals, socializing with them, maybe even helping them find resources (like cleaning help?) - this could be a blessing in disguise for all 3 of you by building a different relationship with them, and giving you a purpose so you don't feel like a failure. I hope you feel better in the morning light.

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I was 52 when that decision was mine. Honestly, it felt good getting rid of that one big stressor in my life...my job. Times have gotten tough financially, but I always seem to make it. It is a decision I have yet to regret, 7 years later.

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Sounds like we have a lot in common but I was 42 when I was given that speech about not being able to work 8 hours ever and to apply for disability. I feel your pain!!! I remember the shock of hearing it like it was yesterday though it has been 3 years now and I was approved in about 9 months. Hoping your approval will go quickly for you and that you can find some peace in your decisions. I think it would be hard to live back with your parents, but I have a brother who is still living at home and he is actually thier life saver because I am not sure how they could financially survive by themselves sine the economy has tanked so much so it is really a blessing is disguise for all of them, though my dad would never admit it. My bro. was engaged for a short while and it had many of us worried about how mom and dad could make it without his help. So while it has some drawbacks for all involved it actually it can be very helpful for all involved.

Honestly I think it is difficult for our elderly parents to think about thier children in worse health than them so it is easier for them to just not address it. I know I feel my health condition scares my parents half to death and it isn't until other people are asking how I am doing do they ever make the effort to find out. After it hurting my feelings deeply for a while I have just come to realize I don't think my mom does well with serious illness with anyone...she would rather ignore it and act like nothing is going on. That is how she deals and I have realized she is not strong enough to be there for me and so I have to get my emotional support from other outlets.

Vent away when every you need to!!! I am sure most of us gets where you are coming from!

Best wishes,


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I am so sorry concerning your health situation. I am a 3 year heart attack survivor. I am on Social Security Disabilty. I was denied 1 time. I got an attorney & he was able to get my money. I have only 35% of my heart left but, I have been able to work a fulltime job. When I was in the hospital recovering from bypass surgery I was fired from my job while I layed in a induced comtose state after triple bypass surgery. I did not have a job in coming out of the nursing home. I had no money after being in hospital & nursing home for 3 months. I went to the unemployment and was given that. Unemployment required you to work while you got benefits. I got a job tryed to work after open heart surgery which was too soon and went into congestive heart failure with pneumonia in the left lung and was hospitalized and fired from that new job. Finally I got another job worked 3 weeks and received a letter from SSDN stated I been approved. It took a year to get it. I pray God works out everything in your behalf. Be strongly encouraged through this time of sickness and working out your life situations. I pray your parents come to full understanding that you need their support right now to help you in your decision-making to have good quality care and your SSD benefits, that all will be well with you. I pray God heals your body and make you whole and stabled. Please get well soon. Constine

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Lynnedz, it's so hard having to let go of all these things people say we're supposed to have. I remember how determined you were to keep working. My in-laws made some noise about me being too young to stop working, especially my mother-in-law. She kept going on about "I don't know how you're going to live." At the time I figured she was worried me and my husband would move in with her since I was the one who had been supporting her disabled son. It's apparent at times they don't get how sick I am. I think it's like Cindy was saying, they don't want to deal with it.

I hope you can get to not feeling too bad about living with your parents. In this economy, a lot more people are having to live with relatives. I'm considering moving into an RV in my sister's back yard to help her with her upcoming baby and get a break on cost of living.

I got the letter from my old job about them terminating my employment this month unless I go back to work. They sent a list of available positions. The only thing that tempted me was per diem Cardiac Rehab RN. I don't think I can be reliable enough and I'm scared of the stress of starting something new, even though it might be fun. It does make me sad, but if I take care of myself I can still have a worthwhile life. I hope you can too.

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oh Lynne...sorry to hear about that...it can be so hard to accept that our paths in life go where they meander, and not where we want them to go. Going to live with your parents can be very hard, but like another poster stated, it could be a good thing for all of you. I have been in your shoes, having to give up a job I loved because of my heart failure. That was four years ago at 48 and some days it still bothers me. Be kind to yourself, listen to the doctors, and reach out for help. In your parents home with them and when you are on disability, there are resources available not only to help you out, but your parents too...they may not understand the depth of your illnesses, but you do, and you need to take care of YOU.
My heart goes out to you, it is never easy to hear that news from the doctors...stay strong and take that fighting attitude with you onto the new path...

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May I join your pity party?
Two years ago my Mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's and was an alcoholic. I gave up my apt. my job and insurance to move back home to care for her and my alcoholic Father. Only to find out that my brothers, age 52 and 40 were at home being totally supported by my parents. (both of them are unemployed alcoholics) No room in the house, I get to sleep in the three season sun porch. (thank goodness for a mild winter)
A year goes by, Dad is diagnosed with Alzheimer's.
Both brothers loose their driving licenses. (D.U.I's)
I have a heart attack.
No insurance, no income. $220.00 for one month of a prescription you MUST take or you could die. $167.00 for an office visit to the cardiologist. No insurance means no GP will take you.
Depression, panic attacks, symptoms of panic attacks feel like another heart attack,so you have another panic attack, insomnia from the panic attacks and the nightly dealings with parental sundowning.......
I am working on getting the finances in order, finding a suitable facility for my parents to "retire" to, packing up my Cat and moving to another state to start my life over again.
God gave me a second chance, I think I'll take him up on it.

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Lynnedz, I understand completely your fears. Although I don't have elderly parents, I do have two adult kids (18 and 21) who still live with us and a husband with some health problems of his own. Don't be discouraged about the SSD! When I finally realized I couldn't work any more (and it wasn't fair for my employer to have me gone so much and sick and distracted when I was there) I hired Binder & Binder to help me with my SSD claim. I was told that it wasn't uncommon for people to wait a year or even TWO to get SSD. But, miraculously they filed for me in October and by the following April I was awarded SSD. (Or, another way to look at it was I was so far gone they just gave it to me, LOL!) I was told over and over by Binder that it was all about the documentation. It's so important to talk to your docs and make sure they can not only provide documentation showing a long and chronic illness, and your inability to do your job, and also get doctor recommendation letters saying they believe you are no longer to work. If you get an advocacy company like Binder to handle it, they work with your docs to get all that is necessary, and they seem to know what they are doing. My life is so much better now that I don't have to worry about trying to find some job that would somehow not mind if I was out for long stretches of time or sick when I was there. Who is going to hire someone like that ? If you can't work, you deserve your SSD....you've been paying for it all these years ! Regarding your parents, maybe it's a good thing you are with them....maybe it works out for all of you. At least you had somewhere to go. Regarding your just feeling crappy that night, Lord.... I know that feelng. Tomorrow is another day! Don't give up, you have lots of life to live !

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Hi their I'm so sorry u feel this way but it can get better I can remember this word for word but I'll get the idea. It's a fake story but a story so humor me :) a professor had a lecture he had a glass vase filled it with golf balls and asked the class 'is this full?' the class agreed it was......... He then took pebbles and pored them in which filled in more gaps he asked again 'is this full?' again they answered yes ....... He took some sand poored it in which filled in all the cracks again he asked 'is this full now?' the class again said yes he then took two beers and pored them in which filled all the remaining space a laughing and confused class agreed it was now full . The golf balls are the important stuff you your family your health your apirations etc the pebbles are your job home etc and the sand everything else. If u only filled your life focusing on the 'golf balls' your life can still be full and if u only focus on the pebbles and ut them first you can't fit the golf balls in :) your health is number one as is your family yes losing your job and home you may see as a set back but thy just pebbles :) and as for y he pored the beers in well even if your life seems too full you can always fit in a couple of drinks with friends :D I hope u feel better soon people tc

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Get out there and live. This your life and Rocky story.
I had a major heart attack when I was 39 year old. I
Was recently divorced and had a mid-size real estate
Company and lots of debt. The doctor told me after
3 weeks in ICU to go home and get my affairs in
Order. That was over 20 years ago. I have to take
The medical communities recommendations with
A grains of salt. I have had an injection fraction
Of 25 since 1992. They want me on comadan ,
Defibrillator and a boat load of other things.
I seem to be only depressed when I see my
Doctors. Otherwise life is beautiful. I'm not
Going to be a victim. My dad said you can
Either put the covers over you head or go
Live you life. Walking, diet, mediitation and
Lots of self help audio tapes help. The heart
Attack changed my life for the better. Time
Is my most important asset and I'm not going
To waste it. Change your attitude, chane your mind.
You are a winner. Find the bless this situation
Has given you. But you are STILL allowed to
Go in a closet and scream once in a while
My prayers are with you!

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The information provided by this online support network through WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease and Inspire is for general informational purposes only. The information is not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnoses, or treatment. If you are ill, or suspect that you are ill, see a doctor immediately. In an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease never recommends or endorses any specific physicians, products or treatments for any condition.