Pete’s blog: Work & benefits

Me and Jade had an uncomfortable talk the other night; she was getting a bit upset trying to pay everything and never having anything left. ”I NEED SOME HELP HERE.”
I was upset because I would normally be bringing in more than my share but at the moment I only work part-time. I tried working full time and did a good job too at the aluminium factory but I was getting worse not better. I’d sometimes work 3 days without sleep, you know, on account of my insomnia. In fact, it was dangerous; I was so tired driving to work on the highway and had only just passed my test again.

I thought about it all night. Although I’m doing well recovering ( mainly because I’m putting the time in), if I go back to full time work I’ll stop improving and I want my body back!!!! But I want to help my wife too. I thought about it and, in desperation, decided to visit Centerlink who now help with the benefit payments that go towards my keep. I walked in and took a seat. An hour later I was seen guy called Michel and a lovely lady (whose name I now forget), explained my story and said that I was looking for help to get me back into the workforce, as my cleaning job is not enough as yet. (I think over time I may get sick of it anyway.)
They told me about a system that registers you with disability support agencies funded by the government. Apparently, they will help place me into a suitable, manageable job, as I still suffer with fatigue and am not yet as strong on my right side as I’d like. At first they said I’d have to have a medical and I thought “Oh here we go, they’ll stop my support.” And I got a bit stressed.
I said “No look! I’ve done the right thing here; I’ve come in looking for help to get in the workplace – don’t tell me that if I fail pass this medical, you’ll stop my much needed benefit, (like that guy on telly who had metal bloody legs)!!!!
‘When I was growing up, my father always told me, “If you can work, you must work, son!! So here am am!!! Please help!”
The lady calmed me down and said “Don’t worry, we’re not going to stop your benefits. We just need to know what job is suitable for you, okay? I promise!!!
I really thought that Jade will have a nervous breakdown but, hopefully it’ll be all cool. They’re sending me the forms and I hope it leads to a job, career or even a new direction?
Well done the government for this avenue! Stroke recovery can be very slow and we need all the support we can get, so thank you.

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