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After all the months reading about people with job troubles on top of cancer troubles and family troubles, it looks like I've joined that little group -- as in jumping in with both feet.

Last Friday, I was essentially fired from my job. What makes it really interesting is that I work for my sister. She has been really wound up for a while, pitched a little fit, and when I told her I was leaving the room to let her cool down, she said, "Don't even think of coming back." And that was that. It was my death warrant -- no job, no insurance.

I spent the weekend sleeping mostly, so I didn't have to think about it. Sunday night, my mother called to let me know she'd arrived at my niece's where she'll be staying a while. I couldn't not tell her, because she was doing her usual 100 questions about everything, and I wasn't going to lie to her.

As usual, she decides I'm wrong, I should just go back in Monday like nothing ever happened. I kept telling her about the "don't even think about coming back" (which had been preceded by "I'm in charge."), so I wouldn't be going back unless she asked me to. I knew that mother would be calling my sister after we talked, because it was very unsettling to her, understandably.

Monday, my sister called and offered to come over and talk later, and I agreed. I spent the day preparing myself, trying to figure out what the 2 of us could do to fix this. When she got here, she started out like this: "I need to find out what is causing your problem, and specifically what's causing your problems with me." All me, huh. That just about told me all I needed to know. And it got worse.

It didn't end great, because she threw an unbelievable accusation at me that was absolutely false, and I sat there and gave her plenty of evidence to the contrary, but she isn't the kind to admit she is wrong, so that was that.

My plan before the talk was to talk to some of the developers buying land around here and see if they'd buy my house, then have a giant garage sale and move back to Texas where my family is. After the talk with my sister, I think it's still a good plan. She and I are talking again on Wednesday, and I think she may want me to come back, but it will be in a completely different way. I really can't (and won't) function with a cloud over me and knowing she thinks I'm responsible for all the things that she believes are wrong.

For now, the insurance is in place, but I'm only about $500 into the $1,500 deductible for the year, so have to continue paying as I go for a while, then it kicks into 80%. Over the weekend I was fully prepared to cancel my doctor appointments this week because I knew I could no longer pay for them. Now, I'll see what happens in the next week.

I see the PCP today and Oncologist tomorrow, and will see how things go. It's actually better today, because I have a plan, I think.

But that's why I've been laying low for a few days and not being my usual ebullient self! It's not a cry for sympathy, just to let you know what's going on, and that I've learned that the world doesn't stop and slow down for you just because you have cancer.

The worst is that I really have no sister for all intents and purposes. My brother wrote her off years ago, and I've tried for over a decade thinking I could get along with her, but she just can't be much of a normal person.

That is that. I'm still feeling pretty good -- was stiff on Sunday after all that laying around sleeping!


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well, all of that truly stinks, and the only thing I can think of is, well, she is, after all, your sister - and even if she doesn't want you working there and even if you don't want to be working there, can't she at least work something out to keep you on the company health insurance plan? Because she is your sister?

I sure hope so. If not, keep it through COBRA until you can get another job and more health insurance.

Keep us posted,


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Such a sticky wicket...as we've discussed a bit. But in your case, more complex due to working together and the insurance issue.

I just hope this all works out in a way that is palatable and least troublesome/most right for YOU, Di. You're MY concern here....not sis' need to "rule the working roost".

Gawd...you can pick your friends, huh? Relatives....well, you get what you get. Don't know many people that didn't get a klunker in there somewhere.

Guess that's part of how we grow up a little stronger, huh? Tossing lots of good vibes your way that this all works out okay! Love you.

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Isn't it just wild how often friends and acquaintences can be more understanding and helpful than family? Fortunately, I have some really close friends and if oush came to shove I know they would help me out long before my family would. Just hang in there and stand your ground with her. Just try and salvage the insurance!!! Hope things get better really soon!

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Di! Being treated like that by a sister feels like a real betrayal! Been there; done that! It hurts and the sister has no idea how deeply it does!

About the Health Insurance: The Insurance Co. is required by law to let you remain insured by them for a period of time after you are no longer employed by one of their members. You will have to pay for it and it is not cheap! It is still better than no insurance with our common problem! There is a name for this and my chemo brain will not let me remember! LOL! Call the Company and ask. It has nothing to do with your sister or her money. Love, Marge

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I believe that would be COBRA.


Revert to childhood - pull her hair and throw her on the sidewalk! Yeah, that's it, pull her hair! Yours can't be quite long enough for her to retaliate, a benefit to bald!

I wish I could say I find that hard to believe, but from what I've seen of "family" lately, all I can offer is "typical".

Sorry that you are in a tough spot, I still think you should pull her hair - and break one of her toys! Yeah, that's it! Break one of her FAVORITE toys....yeah!

Take care,


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Hi Di.

Oh dear. I can relate.... it hurts and it hurts deeply. If you were my cat, Timmy Tom, right now you would be licking your front leg. (that's what he does when he is perplexed, embarrassed or hurt feelings) Do your cats do this too?

I have been ousted by my sibs too....??? Ouch. double ouch and beyond.

It has taken me months to get over the initial shock and pain. I was dang near mortally wounded. I am much better now. I have learned through these months that it is ME that I NEED to take care of. Period. I stopped calling them. And lord knows they stopped calling me shortly after my dx. Doesn't make sense.

So very sorry dear. Do take care of yourself. You are number one.

Cindi o'h

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I am so sorry to hear about the squabble with your sister. I moved back here to Nashville from Florida after my diagnosis in Feb 2004 to be close to my family two sisters and a brother, (my 22 yr old daughter stayed in Florida) It is nothing like I thought it would be, as much as I love my family I cannot depend on them, they will offer to do things and not do them, they are so in denial of me having this disease (my father died of SCLC 18 yrs ago) the best they can do is call every few days to see how I am feeling or what the dr said or what the next tx is. Families are strange but no matter what I love mine where they are, I figure what else can I do. I am thinking that I may have been happier staying in Florida with my daughter, I miss her so much.

I do hope you and your sister patch things up, it may not be perfect but its family - and no one's is. Good Luck!


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none of this is good.....

this stuff is hard on everybody.....its hard on your sister too if she care's for you at all.....and i imagine she does....

ive been through losing my dad to cancer......and having the cancer myself..... and i'd rather have the cancer...

...i'd try to chill....you may not be thinking "exactly right" ......i know that i'm not thinking normally......i catch myself thinking some pretty crazy stuff.... i'm not sure how much my rationale is affected....

prbly couldnt whoop her anyway.....unless you sucker-punched her....hehhhee


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