Eventually after getting shocking news like getting breast cancer, life must go on. You've got to get back to work. And both of us are lucky to be among the group of people who can honestly say that they love their jobs. I've always enjoyed working with kids, going back to my days as a camp group leader and counselor. Tracy had just started a new job as a trainer with CPS and she loves that job (I've always thought Tracy would make a great teacher, and while she disagrees, this training gig comes very close to that).
A good friend of mine named Joe, who is a juvenile probation officer in Kansas, once told me that if you enjoy that job that you do, you'll never work a day in your life. I've never forgotten that quote, and I've shared it with others countless times. I once saw that quote attributed to Confucius, the ancient Chinese philosopher. Anyway, our work has been a bright spot in all of this. Not only is it fun and challenging, but our co-workers and bosses have been so supportive! It's really been off the charts how supportive they have been. I don't know how we could do all this without them. I really don't.
So I'm happy to report that even though we have both missed quite a bit of work-- my two month battle with bronchitis hasn't helped-- we are still employed! Tracy has burned up quite a bit of sick days (this is what they are for), but fortunately she had quite a few saved up. And she can use vacation days after that. She's even had co-workers offer to donate vacation days to her after she uses up her vacation days! Isn't that something?
As for me, I get 10 sick days a year and I'll use up every one of them this year if I haven't already. For a point of reference, I took only one sick day that I can remember in my first 10 years of teaching! But even though I've been gone a lot. My fellow faculty members have been so supportive. I've got two amazing substitute teachers that regularly take my place. My 7th grade teaching team is the absolute greatest. They are always asking about Tracy, and me. They recently bought us a gift card to Valentino's pizza, because chemo patients in their families always liked pizza when they were going through chemo.
Tracy and I are blessed to be working where we work and with whom we work.