I marched myself down to the Human Resource department and set up a time that we could discuss my options and to get a good game plan that would work for all of us. I am a nurse but I wasn't going to be doing direct patient care so that helped in the decision making process. I also learned that I had rights and job security through the Family and Medical Leave Act or FMLA. I found that I could take the days off that I needed together and also take intermittent leave as I needed it.
My thought process also included financial concerns and what kind of flexibility that I needed to do my job. I found that my employer was willing for me to flex my time as I needed it. I also realized I needed the social part of my job as well, since isolating myself at home was not going to be productive in any sense of the word for me. I would normally have treatment near the end of the week and so I had the weekend to recoup. When it came time for radiation every day, I hopped into my car at then end of the day and headed to Sandy Lake to get my treatment and then back home. I did end up in the hospital at one point when my counts became too low and I had nothing left. I was then given a shot to help with that problem, had some fluids and returned home the next day to resume work after the weekend.
I do think you have to be honest with your employer and discuss your concerns and what would be a manageable workload and also if I needed to take time off, how long would they hold my job and /or if job sharing or part-time might work till I got back to my normal self and ready to face the daily challenges of working full time.
Something that often comes up is how much do I tell me co-workers or maybe I am just not comfortable in telling them anything. I have found that most people are caring and supportive and also that they are more uncomfortable talking about all of this than you are. Know that you are not obligated to tell them anything at anytime and especially if it makes you uncomfortable. You are more than entitled to say just that, "I am not comfortable talking about that!" Many will be ill at ease with it all and humor is a great help in tearing down those barriers. There are no "RIGHT" words, just be genuine, sincere, and honest and you will be accepted and encouraged.
I would also say, be gentle with yourself. Anytime you have been off even for a short while, coming back can be a challenge not only mentally but also physically. When you need a moment to regroup, allow yourself the time to do just that. I have learned much through my own experience but so much more through the experience of others. Again, there is no right or wrong way, just find what works for you. My failsafe is always to have humor and to remember to Make It A Great Day! s