I’m completely wiped out. I’ve spent all day marking, which took twice the time it should have. I guess I’m a little rusty.
My phased return does feel a little fast though. I did pluck up the courage to tell my boss, but I’ve still agreed to do a little more than I feel comfortable with.
I’m also ridiculously emotional. I almost cried on the train home, fighting back tears the entire journey.
I guess I’m a little overwhelmed. On the bright side I shall attempt sleep tonight without my trusty sleeping pills. I’m that tired!!!
Today was huge!!!! gut wrenching, nausea inducing huge. After 6 months of absence, I made a lunch, adorned my lanyard, swallowed some PRN (lirazepam) and went back to work.
I’m currently sitting in my old office, albeit slightly rearranged. I asked my boss if I could have it back; and he said he’d think about it, but within 20 minutes following our meeting I was informed that its current occupant has been turfed out, giving me my space back. My office space is something that is important to me. I’m on the 3rd floor of the building which means that I’m not subjected to same levels of student traffic as the main teaching rooms are on the floors below. Being “hidden away ” in this manner means less ad hoc student drop ins, less ad hoc concerns, complaints or general chat, which can quickly eat away at time preserved for tasks. I’ll still get the occasional knock but with less frequency than staff on the lower floors.
Coming back to work has been very emotional for me and I’m still feeling a little shaky and overwhelmed. Colleagues have been lovely, with hugs and offers of coffee and no prying questions. I’ve just eaten lunch with a few but i really didn’t participate much in the conversion. I’ve lost that side off myself, lost all my confidence but it will hopefully come back.
A nice little work related task just appeared in my inbox this morning, not from my manager but from one of my previous students, who is applying for PhD’s. I was his undergraduate project supervisor and he wishes to use me as a reference. I am delighted to do that for him, and even more so because his email helped to ground me this morning. His email was my first interaction with any students albeit electronically., but it also provided me with an icebreaker manageable task to get my fingers typing and my mindset back to work. It was exactly what I needed. It also helps that he was a great student, and his reference will reflect that.
I’m now emotionally and physically drained, and really just need to go home. I shall leave soon.
I’m afraid of time alone. This past two days I’ve been on my own and I’ve literally not allowed myself anytime for rest or thinking. I had psychology today which gave me a reason to get up. I’ve since vacumed and mopped all my floors twice, blitzed Little mans room, the spare room and all of downstrairs. I’ve done 3 loads of laundry, I’ve gone to the gym, and gone out on my bike. I’m afraid of those moments of respite that most people long for. That’s when I start to think, self criticise, catasrophize and become self destructive.
I’ve slightly abused diazepam this past two nights. I’ve taken more than one really should; just enough to find some much needed sleep. I felt no ill effects from the 15 mg this morning. Dancing with Benzo’s is a risky game, I know. I won’t do it once I have caring responsabilites again.
Tomorrow is another big day for me. I’m finally speaking to Occi Health about my impending return to work. I don’t feel ready yet and I’m mad at myself for not being ready. I’ve just read my hospital discharge summary again and to be honest it doesn’t really give the full picture. I guess I’ll have to be honest tomorrow, if I can. I’ll have to check what information he is obliged to share with managers first.
Feeling rather stressed this evening.
As we pulled up to the nursery Little man was in good spirits. He clasped my hand as I led him into the toddler room. Then it happened. His little bottom lip turned out and quivered. His eyes filled with tears as he saw me abandoning him, and my heart broke!
These are the moments that torture me. Guilt swells from the pit of my stomach, and it crushes me, just a little more each time.
I want to be his caregiver, fun provider, story teller, dance partner, wrestling companion, mess making comrade, snuggle monster, and best friend, but our world is such that I have to work, and it’s killing me.
It’s no wonder really; that I burned out. Working full time, commuting everyday with Little man on trains at rush hour and having absolutely no support outside myself and OH. I did the commute again this morning to ease Little man back into nursery. I’m already exhausted and I’m not yet back at work. I walk approx 4 miles everyday, just to go from my door to my office and home again. It doesn’t sound like much but one of those miles is up hill, pushing a heavy toddler, often in darkness with pouring rain and gusting winds. Those are the days, that I long to be able to drive. One thing is for sure, I 100% cannot go back full time. I’ll burn out again by Christmas.
I didn’t sleep last night at all. Honestly, I was awake until at least 4am and then it was broken. Something needs to be done about my inability to sleep. I can’t continue feeling like this.
Somtimes thoughtfulness showers us from an unexpected source. That’s exactly what happened to me today. I’ve just arrived home from taking little man to soft play and on my doorstep I found a parcel. The parcel contained a beautiful bouqet of flowers from my boss and all my work colleagues. I am truely touched by the gesture. It’s nice to know that even though I have been physically absent, I have remained within their thoughts.
I’m quite nervous about the prospect of returning to work, but maybe it won’t be as daunting as I’ve imagined.