I have come a long way in the last year and change due to that powerful, five-letter word. I have done things I wouldn’t ordinarily do. Gone places, spoken words, taken action, and stepped out with a bold ability, knowing that what I want, I will have.
I will try to make my testimony as short as possible. Those that know me personally know that short is a serious feat for me. Anyway, here it goes…
I transferred my job from Atlanta to Charleston in March 2006. There was apprehension towards the move because I was not long into a new relationship and did not want to leave my manfriend. However, the powers that be decided for me when my transfer came through.
I moved the end of March and the second week in April I injured myself on the job. I didn’t think much of it at first, barely experiencing any pain. I had previously hurt my back in Atlanta with my back healing just fine. That was not the case this time. Days went by and my back pain took a dive for the worst. Everything from spasms to numbness in my legs and toes. The tingling would get so bad that I would have to stop walking. Felt like my legs were in battle with Pinhead from Hellraiser oozing blood as I moved.
As time progressed, so did my pain. I went from doctor to doctor, Chiropractor to physical medicine. My on-the-job injury claim was denied. That sent me into oblivion. No longer was I just in pain, now I would have to come out of my own pockets to reimburse all of my medical expenses. I left work early, came home and cried. I couldn’t understand why this was happening. I thought moving to Charleston had been a blessing. God had allowed so many good things to happen to me upon moving here, so why this…now?
I knew that I had to take things into my own hands. My parents and I prayed. I started applying to less, physically-demanding jobs. Thought I had found my dream job. Interviewed and impressed the employer. They implied that I was the perfect candidate. A few days later while visiting the manfriend in Atlanta, I called my dream job to get the confirmation of my employment. Hmmm, wouldn’t you know it…they decided to go with another candidate. My world crumbled once again.
Upon returning to Charleston, my mother and I had a talk about everything that had been going on concerning my injury and the fact that I did not get the job that I spoke out about and claimed as mine. I told her, “As much as I wanted that job and felt that it was mine, I did not want to lose my benefits with … I feel that they owe me because I injured myself on their clock. I want them to either help me find another federal job or send me to school. They owe me.”
I continued going to the doctor. They continued lessening my work restrictions. But the little that I was able to do was still too much. My back continued to suffer. My pain had become so bad that I couldn’t take going to work. Since my claim was denied, I ended up having to take time off without pay. So I put in for two weeks with no pay. Because I still had time on the books, they used my sick and annual leave. Even though I didn’t want them to do that because I wanted to be able to use that at a later date, I was thankful that I would not be without money.
Once those two weeks were over, I went back to work. My back was still going through the motions. I told my supervisor that I was going to quit. Now this supervisor and I did not get along when I first transferred, but he implored me not to quit. He told me that I shouldn’t have to quit since I hurt myself… So I delayed my resignation a little longer. Instead I turned in another leave notice for two more weeks without pay. I went home depressed because I knew I would only end up with a weeks worth of pay this time, but on the other hand, I knew it was what I had to do.
I came home that day with my lips all sunken in. I pulled up to mailbox, pulled out the mail and saw something with my name on it from the Department of Labor (DOL). I opened it immediately. It was a notice that my previously denied claim had been accepted. After submitting further documentation, my injury was finally approved. I was elated!
Now I could take the 45 days WITH pay allotted to me due to my injury … NOT. I found out that those days were to be taken from the day of injury. WHAT!!! And the saga continues.
Fortunately my doctor put me on further restrictions. He had me doing the bare minimum with 15 min increments of sitting down. When I turned that notice in, the j-o-b said, “No ma’am. Just go home.” They didn’t have to tell me twice. I was sent home for 30 days WITH pay. And when those 30 days were up, the doctor put me on for 30 more. And when those days were up, he signed a note saying that I had reached maximum improvement and that I was no longer physically qualified to perform the duties of my job.
Tell me God ain’t good!
My employer submitted the necessary paperwork beginning the process of taking me off of the payroll and put on with DOL’s. From October ’06 until August ’07, I had no job to report to. I was still getting paid. And guess what??? The very thing that I told me mother months back, is what happened. My job sent me to school. My full tuition is PAID for. Books PAID for. Supplies PAID for. And I get extra money monthly for personal expenses (gas, food…). Plus, I am still getting PAID.
Now, God is GOOD!
And what makes it better is that I am going to school to do something I was going to pay triple for at a private school. When I was going to turn in my resignation, I planned on enrolling in the school and getting a loan to pay for it. God had other plans, plans that were in alignment with my desires. Now I am in school full time at a great, non-private school, getting the best education, with no cost to me. And get this … the private school that I wanted to go to fired their instructors during the middle of school so all of the students are in limbo. Why would I pay $10,000 to be in limbo??? God knew all along. His plan was perfect for me.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hew 11:1
“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2Cor 5:7
Take a step out on faith today. Don’t go by what you see right now. Faith is seeing into your future. Faith is seeing things that are not as though they are (there’s a scripture on that too … to speak those things that are not as though they were … I’ll have to get that one for you later). Step into your future and see what God had planned for you before you were even born. As you grow, so will your faith. And as your faith grows, so will you.
To help you, grab a mustard seed. I have one that I keep in a very small plastic wrap. I keep that seed with me. It reminds me that I only need a small amount of faith to allow God to work in my life. Get your seed, pray over it and watch God change things.
Told you I was long-winded… =)
This is Jewells signing out…