I was good last night, I didn’t frantically try to cram notes into my head, I opted for the gym instead.
This morning I could feel the anxiety rising, but I flicked through my slides only once. I kept telling myself, you’ll be fine, you can do. By lunchtime my heart was thumping!!! I took a lorazepam. The lecture started at 1.
293 expectant faces glared at me, whilst I battled with the AV equipment.
A couple of finger taps on Mic to shuss them;”good afternoon everyone!!! I am Dr……. and today we’re going to talk about the heart”. By the first slide transition, there it was, I noticed my open stance, my strut out from behind the lectern; I’d found my swagger!!!!
An IT glitch a few slides in didn’t phase me, stunned silence when I asked them questions didn’t phase me, I had the nerve to probe, I was in control.
Now I will be clear that this was first year level stuff, and this is not a solid predictor of how subsequent more taxing classes will go. I should also say that this particular cohort had just the right mix of respect, broavdo, humour, and swots to allow the session to flow. They were a nice bunch.
I’m attributing some of calmness to the PRN, and I guess a non rushed prep which was afforded to me because I’m on a phased return.
That being said, I did well today, and it has brought some confidence.
I survived!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And this evening I’m feeling a little stronger. O.K I did not pull off todays practical with a swagger, but nor did I limp helplessly through it. There were definetly some head scratching moments as my explanations caused some students more confusion than clarity, and some of their rebutals made my head spin but ultimately I was able to remain relatively calm, relatively composed and most importantly adequatly competent to get us all through the session. Today was the closest I’ve felt to the old work Dr. Loopy. I was in control of 3 demonstrators and 60 odd students and it didn’t reduce me to the aticipated crumbling mess that I was after last Thursdays prac.
I am not firing on all cylinders just yet, but I have more hope today that i will get there. This evening I played with little man as OH went boxing. I then went to the gym upon OH’s return home. About an hour of solid cardio, a quick shower and tonight I’ve spent about another hour and a half preparing for my next big test.
Friday will see me stand, once again in a lecture hall, faced with a wall of students.It’s on the cardiovascular system, pretty apt really, as my heart will certainly be thumping? Tonight i finalised the slides: tomorrow I shall finalise my script.
I’m exhausted now, time for bed.
I’m lying in bed now starting to freak out. I need to sleep, I’m up at 6.
Tomorrow for the first time, I’m in charge of running a lab prac. Considering i walked out and had a meltdown last week, doesn’t bold well for tomorrow.
The morning session looks easy enough and so I thought; “o.k loopy, you’ve got this”. A couple of basic chem titrations to determine unknown conentrations of Vit C in juices and tablets. Simple!
Tonight though I’ve prepped for the afternoon session. I really need more time to pull it off with a swagger. The whole afternoon is dedicated to calculations, specifically paracetamol toxicity calculations and other mathematical tools to read blood parameters and figure out why our poor mystery patient is in so much trouble.
A practical on frigging drug overdoses!!! Seriously. Maybe next year I could suggest zopiclone toxicity. I suppose although this cuts a little close to the bone for me, I would never ever use paracetamol as a suicide agent.
The main problem with tomorrow is the sheer harassment I’ll get from students and paid demnstarors on how to perform the tasks set. It will be exhausting!!.
They better be able to calculate Moles per litre, and convert this into all manners of solutions. They better be happy with dilution factors and ratios. They better ace drawing standard curved and extrapolation of data. They better frigging listen when I talk them through things.
My head already hurts from the fatigue of prepping. Tomorrow, if I can limp over the line with these students, I shall count it as a victory. Tomorrow afternoon is definatly too much too soon.
“You should think about going down to 50% until September” Those where the words that spilled from my boss’s mouth this morning, during a meeting that I had to request, in order to discuss how I’m doing on my phased return.
They stung! You’re no good to me now Loopy, you can’t handle anything and it’s costing us too much, is what I heard. All I needed was a supportive, “you can do this” but instead the last remaining shred of optimism for my future was ripped away.
I’m a burden, I’m incompetent and I’m very nearly done.
Tonight’s little sleeping pills are the same brand as those I used in August. It’s the first time a pharmacy has dispensed the same kind, in all these months. It’s a coincidence that they arrived today, on a day when I want to consume them all. I don’t have enough though, so I’ll just have to settle for a slightly comatosed sleep.
I have no capacity for stress, no tolerance for the all to familiar stares from other commuters, no cut off valves, when my face decides to spontaneously leak and no hope that this will ever change.
I wish I could see my old CPN. She’d know how to make me feel a little better. God I wish she’d come back…..
Literally!!! Today I was bombarded with question after question. Today’s practical was on nerve action potentials. It was simulator based Tiny laptop screens, with an unfamiliar programme and the glare off bright sunlight bathing the lab.
It was too much too soon. Nothing quite knocks your confidence like the inability to field questions from 2nd years.
“I’m sorry, I don’t usually run this; can you ask T? I felt incompetent, insecure and fragile.
I ran! Left T and demonstrators to it, with no explanation or curtious good bye. Tears ran down my face uncontrollably at my desk. What the hell is wrong with me?????
Worse still I was discovered by a colleague. She was kind, but all I wanted to do, was ring for help. Ring to hear a calm voice at the other end of the line. A voice that’s used to dealing with meldowns. A voice that knows my story.
But she wouldn’t leave!!!!
Tonight I’ve got that horrible defeated feeling in my gut. Some people are meant to live until old age. Other’s, well others should know when to give up.
But I’ve got a little boy ….. . …