Into the system…

blogging, work, mental health, therapy, disability, benefits and more…

return to the system…

with 5 comments

…a different system to the one that my blog title refers to, but a system nonetheless. Tomorrow, I go back to work.

It feels too soon. I know it is too soon, yet I’m not doing anything to stop it.

I am too scared to go back to my doctor and tell her I can’t cope. I am too scared to tell my new line manager I can’t face it. I’m too scared to tell HR I’m not ready. I am too scared to admit to my partner I am not better. Hell, I’m too scared to admit to myself.

I want to be ready. I want to go back. I want to see my friends. I want to get involved in new projects. I want to feel like I have something to live for. I want to have something to do. I want to feel capable. I want to succeed.

I want to know if I’m ready. I try and work out if I’m ready, but all I feel is that I am not.

My mood had picked up over the past week. My holiday was pleasant. I felt almost capable. We did things. I enjoyed the sunshine. My appetite has returned. I socialised and it was almost comfortable. I didn’t feel suicidal all of the time, although I can’t say the thoughts had gone completely. I had moments where I forgot I was depressed. I wondered if the pills were working or if it was the holiday that made me feel better or if I was just feeling better anyway. Generally, it wasn’t bad. Not as bad as I’d feared at least.

The problem is I’m not on holiday anymore. I’m home and it’s harder to forget things. Things are suspended when you are on holiday. You can be someone that you are not and it is easier to forget the things that haunt you, the things that bother you. I was able to forget how depressed I was, albeit temporarily, because I was with people who only knew the happy me and I could show them the happy me. I did my best to shake off my moods and did my best to keep going. I wasn’t wholly successful and it’s a tiring act to put on, but generally I did feel a bit better. By pretending to be better, I almost convinced myself I was.

I’m home now though and I know I’m not better. During the drive back, all I could feel was churning anxiety in my stomach and my mind ticking over the things I faced when I returned. I didn’t want to leave the safety of the holiday. I didn’t want to come home. I could feel post-holiday blues descending like a big cloak of gloom. I know everyone suffers from post-holiday blues at the best of times, but I couldn’t help fear that mine would be worse than most. I couldn’t help worrying that mine would be a return to the suicidal depths of my depression. The fact that they haven’t been…quite, should be comforting, but I still worry that those moods are only days away.. hours away even.

Yesterday was a day of doing stuff. Unpacking, buying food, sorting things out, mowing the lawn. It was a list of chores, which a couple of weeks ago would have been unthinkable, but I managed them. I felt okay. Not as good as last week, but not desperately low. I wonder if I am improving, if I am better. Maybe I will be able to cope with work after all? I feel a bit better. I know I am anxious about work, but my mood has been much worse, even when I was still at work and performing well. Maybe the drugs are kicking in at last and maybe if I go back it will help me to get better? I keep trying to convince myself it is a good idea. I want to go back to work. I want to go back to pretending I’m fine.

I am trying to work out if I’m ready. The anxiety coursing through my veins, suggests I am not. The fact that I almost have a panic attack when I think of my inbox, suggests I am not. The fact I still find it hard to make myself do things, suggests I am not. The fact a conversation with my new line manager has put suicide back on the brain, suggests I am not. The fact I can’t face a future, suggests I am not.

Tomorrow I go back to work. I can’t stop it now. I will give it a go, but I just wonder how long I can last.

Written by intothesystem

Tuesday, 29th July 2008 at 5:30 pm

5 Responses

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  1. I am glad that your holiday went well and the sui thoughts were not quite as intense as before. If you are not ready to go back to work tell your GP, you dont want to make yourself worse by going back to work too soon. Hope tomorrow goes well if you do go in. Hannah X


    Tuesday, 29th July 2008 at 11:10 pm

  2. Please don’t go back if you aren’t ready. I’ve done that in the past and crashed out spectacularly… *hugs*

    DeeDee Ramna

    Tuesday, 29th July 2008 at 11:49 pm

  3. Better to go back when YOU are ready not everyone else. If it’s not too late go see your GP or could you work something part time or only do a few days a week for a little while? Take care and good luck x


    Tuesday, 29th July 2008 at 11:54 pm

  4. Hey, same coments as everyone else really – you know that there’ll be stress at work that you don’t have a home, even when you’re low. Which means if you’re feeling bad about it now it may well feel worse at work – especially once you’re back into a workflow and everyone’s expecting a level of productivity that you can’t sustain – which is likely to make it harder than it was before. If you do go back, that doesn’t mean you can’t then change your mind either – good luck anyhow!

    The Chuckle

    Wednesday, 30th July 2008 at 10:50 am

  5. If you are not ready to return don’t go, that’s the most honest piece of advice I can give you, your GP will issue another sick note and HR would have to accept it, don’t feel like people are pushing you back into work when you are not ready. I’ve been there, on three occasions in my last job I went back because others thought I was ready, HR especially are very good at adding pressure, all it resulted in was going sick again a short while afterwards.

    You have to do what feels right for you x


    Wednesday, 30th July 2008 at 5:35 pm

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