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On S/T disability (knee job) - colleague called on his way home ....
Old 01-14-2016, 06:28 AM   #1
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On S/T disability (knee job) - colleague called on his way home ....

On S/T disability (knee job) until 2/1 -colleague called Tuesday night on his way home (we are buddies). We chatted a while about how I was doing and then he asked me if he could call with a technical problem. I said sure I explained I had no PT on Wednesday and all I was planning to do was go for a long walk.

Wednesday comes and we run out to buy a new refrigerator 11 years old, ice maker didn't work, crack in floor, a drawer glide snapped in half and it is making funny noises. Wow they've gotten expensive in 11 years. It took 2 trips - the second trip was to check the measurements and consumer ratings. Interestingly the model with the best sale price had a host of bad reviews - we passed. The stainless steel finish model will finally match the stove, microwave and dish washer for the first time in many years. Which should help when we sell. We get home and between all the standing and waiting around I'm feeling tired I hit the couch.

Of course the phone rings my text message alert and it is my buddy "Can we chat". I log on my laptop was sitting on the kitchen table and we screen share (I see what he sees on his screen and we can alternate control - he's on the speaker phone as well) We solve a technical programming problem stepping through the code line by line. It occurs to me that I really need never set foot in that building again. (Love the people - HATE the crime riddled neighborhood) At the very least I could work from home a couple days a week. Another colleague suggested it as a way to Segway into retirement. I'm still thinking a target date of July I'll be 62.
One new worry my sticker shock at the cost of the refrigerator and my new glasses tells me I am out touch with the cost of larger stuff.

Did you go part time before you retired? Anyone ever work from home?
If you did how did you broach the subject.
Truth is I just don't want to be that guy who dozes off in the afternoon in the office.





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Old 01-14-2016, 08:29 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
Did you go part time before you retired? Anyone ever work from home?
If you did how did you broach the subject.
This was an easy decision for me! None of the scientists at my agency had ever been allowed to go part time, AFAIK, except for one woman who threatened an EEO lawsuit and had some reasons to back it up. So, they were walking on eggshells with her.

However, once I announced my retirement, management was falling all over themselves to get me to consult PT as a retiree. At that point I didn't want to.

In a way, I'm glad I couldn't go PT. If I had, I might still be working there because I wouldn't have got so burned out and I probably could have handled PT. That wouldn't have been a good outcome for me because I really do enjoy being 100% retired, so very much.
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Old 01-14-2016, 08:34 AM   #3
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Rayinpenn,

Sounds like your rehab is going well with your knee replacement. As a 'two-timer' myself (hips), I can sympathize with your desire to work at home. Like you, I found out that I could get a lot of work done from home without going into the office during my short term (S/T) disability leave. After my second stint in S/T disability, I simply asked my boss if I could work from home as much as possible, and come into the office only when necessary. He said that was fine with him.

Also like you, I found myself more fatigued than usual after my second replacement and I was about 5 years younger than you. According to my physical therapist, that is quite normal for our age (over 50) as it can take over a year to get back to sustaining the energy level you had before the surgery.

As you can imagine being able to work at home is highly variable. I worked for MegaCorp who had a full-time nurse at headquarters where I worked. All disability claims and issues went through her. What helped was she had both her hips replaced and was like a bulldog in protecting employees out on S/T disability (especially those who had joint replacements). She literally threatened bosses who wanted their underlings to work during their disability leave. I had to promise that I would only do what I felt like doing; and she checked up on me every few weeks. She was all for working at home if possible once I was off S/T disability.

I ended up retiring about a year after returning from my second hip replacement. I probably spent close to 75% of the time working from home at the end.

Good luck!
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On S/T disability (knee job) - colleague called on his way home ....
Old 01-14-2016, 08:46 AM   #4
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On S/T disability (knee job) - colleague called on his way home ....

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdmorton View Post
Also like you, I found myself more fatigued than usual after my second replacement and I was about 5 years younger than you. According to my physical therapist, that is quite normal for our age (over 50) as it can take over a year to get back to sustaining the energy level you had before the surgery.

Thanks ...
Interesting a fellow TKR guy at PT asked me about being fatigued. I said yes I am dozing in the afternoons. I am convinced the morphine I took to sleep and deal with the PT early on Kicked my butt.

A walk in the cold usually does the trick.

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Old 01-14-2016, 09:12 AM   #5
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After st disability my manager let me WFH one day a week, for 3 months. Doesn't sound like much, but there was no WFH at that time. He did it only because after 2 days of driving in I couldn't feel my hands anymore.

Ray, I believe that this is a great way to start retirement. I mean technically they can't ask you to work while on FMLA, sounds like you have a bargaining chip or two.
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Old 01-14-2016, 11:50 AM   #6
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It may be easier to look at the cost of replacing major appliances, major repairs etc. on the internet and plan for them.

We did not go part-time, but jumped straight into ER.

I find that it is the repetitive expenses that affect the budget way more than the occasional big ones. Get aggressive on savings for insurance, internet access, cell phones, vacation travel/hotels etc. Some other repetitive expenses like property taxes and health insurance are harder to influence.
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Old 01-14-2016, 02:12 PM   #7
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I worked from home for nearly 12 years. At first I asked for 1 day a week. After about a year I went to 2 days a week. Then I started switching the days around ... one week I WFH Monday and Wednesday, the next week Tuesday and Wednesday. After awhile I added a third day once or twice a month. Before I knew it I was WFH full time (except for one or two days a month - facetime was still important). If others in your company are working from home try and find out the % of time they do that and then ask for that amount (ie: Sam works from home 3 days a week and I'd like to do that also).

I also worked Part Time for a few years (all at home !). I worked 3 days a week. It was FANTASTIC. I went back to full time in 2009 - which was a great move as it allowed me to invest the extra 2 days a week income at low prices. Part time was GREAT. It was the best of both worlds. Having said that, now that I have been ER'd for 6 months the idea of working even 10 hours a week makes me shudder.

As for "one off expenses", I budget $7k / year. This is actually based upon a calculation of an annual "accrual" for major items (appliances, roof, cars, etc). You do bring up a good point that I will need to sanity check my assumptions from time to time to ensure the assumptions are still valid.
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Old 01-14-2016, 03:14 PM   #8
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After DW resigned in September 2015 to join me in early retirement, her employer made an offer she couldn't refuse. They offered part time (3-4ish days per week) and working from home while keeping full time salary and benefits.

So DW took up the offer. So far so good but she's planning to leave soon and burning up vacation time right now in preparation. It's a flexible schedule and lets her pop out and do stuff in the middle of the day (like take an hour off at 2:30 today and go to the park with our 3 year old to ride bikes and play, then walk over and pick up our other kids). And it's 4:15 and she's done for the day and drinking a glass of vino now. Definitely a huge upgrade from 30-45 minute 1 way commute and sometimes not being able to find on-site parking at the office.
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Old 01-14-2016, 04:39 PM   #9
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About 5 years ago, I was 55 and I knew DH was going to retired in a few months. So, I went into the office and said I was planning to retire in a few months. I was asked to stay on part-time. I agreed to do it provided I could basically do the kind of work I like and didn't have to do the things I didn't like. Initially I was to work in the office 1 day a week and maybe do a few more hours at home. I did that for awhile then did 2 days a week for awhile.

In the meantime, we moved and the commute was a real hassle. So about 2 1/2 years ago, I went in to resign again. I was asked to stay, but I could work even fewer hours and could do work entirely from home.

I still do that. I average about half a day a week. Some weeks I do nothing. Other weeks I do more. I can turn down any work I don't really want to do. Today, I actually went into the office for the first time in a year! Basically I do everything from home.

It has been a good experience for me.
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