Anonymous A. on September 23, 2019
I resigned from my job last week and accepted an offer the day before being diagnosed with b-cell lymphoma. We don't know specifics yet, but it's likely/hopefully early stage as I have no symptoms other than an enlarged lymph node in my neck. This is devastating news, but I'm hopeful and know it's not necessarily a death sentence. I've heard many positive stories of people who have even worked through this.
My previous job was very very good to me, but this new role is a 35% pay increase and much better benefits including a very good and $0 deductible healthcare plan. I took the role so my wife would not have to work and we could spend more time with our 5 month old. Both the old job and new job are fully remote. The new job is for one of those rare tech unicorns and the stock options could lead to me being financially independent within a few years - something I may need in the years ahead.
Here's what makes this even trickier - the company that hired me is the company I'm currently consulting for and I'm going to have to go in for quite a few tests over the next few weeks so the conversation is probably unavoidable before my official start date next Monday.
I'm in Massachusetts which I believe means I have some extra protections, but I'm not sure what to do here. There's a chance my previous company would understand and take me back. They have "unlimited vacation" and I'd be entitled to FMLA if I stay. At this point there's no reason to expect that I will be unable to work through my treatment, but I just don't know yet and I'll definitely need to take some time if I have to go through chemo. The new job did expect I would need to take a week off for removal of the lump in my neck (it was previously misdiagnosed as a benign brachial cleft cyst - good thing I got a second opinion).
Additional note: when the lump in my neck was being tested I asked if I should wait before accepting any job offers as we knew lymphocytes were found in the biopsy - they indicated that this was nothing that would preclude me from accepting a job offer.
I would really appreciate any advice here!