Fog on the horizon 

I have a confession to make. I’m back on my antidepressants. The last month has been harder than I imagined it was going to be and I need the medical crutch to help me through it. 

My fingers are pausing over the keys as I type this as I don’t feel so good about coming clean. I think this is one of my more negative posts which is why I’m hesitant in writing it. But part of recovery is admitting when things aren’t good and getting help. Part of recovery is swallowing my pride and using support that is available. Part of recovery is knowing what works and what doesn’t. 

The reason for my set back is change. A whole lot of change and with no control over most of it. I’ve found it frustrating, bewildering and upsetting. I first noticed some old unwanted behaviours creeping in such as playing iPhone games instead of sleeping, snapping angrily at my husband and feeling down for no apparent reason. This post about sums it up for me:   I now have to act. And act quickly before the fog moves in. So my action plan is to: 

  • Back on antidepressants 
  • Leave my iPhone downstairs at night and pick up a book at bedtime 
  • Share my feelings (this is the start) 
  • Slow down. Stop rushing around when I’m not at work. 

I feel an overwhelming urge to apologise that this isn’t my normal upbeat positive blog post but this is me. Right now. Hard hitting reality of battling depression. 

So I won’t apologise but if you read this and see me this week – hugs are welcome. 

First day back 

September always makes me want to start afresh. Must be the new school term starting. New uniform. New bag. New coat. New shoes. That’s just my daughter! 

For me it’s returning to work after 13 months off. Yes you read that right, 13 months off work. Well the paid work I do in an office anyway. I’ve had a long holiday last year followed by a year’s maternity leave this year. 

So how do I feel? Honestly… scared. Apprehensive. Worried. 

It’s like being the new girl but everyone has forgotten you’ve been doing something entirely different for the last 13 months. There’s an expectation you will snap back into place as the knowledgeable professional you once were without a moments hesitation or doubt. 

And I’m full of doubt. Can I be a working mum to two young children? Will it affect them? Can I still do my job? Will I be accepted as a part time worker? Will I be stressed all of the time? And it goes on. Constant brain numbing questions. It’s no coincidence I’ve started yoga again this week. I need the peace from my over active brain. 

The expectation – from colleagues, managers, myself, family – is high. I’ve already had emails saying how my return is being welcomed with open arms, how enthusiastic my team is to have me back and how much work is coming my way. Eeek. 

Plus my employers have had a reorganisation since I’ve been away. I’m going back to a new manager, a new team and an ever changing role. I’ll have my standard excuse in my pocket ‘sorry I’ve just returned from a year’s maternity leave’. I’ll smile when people comment ‘it must be nice to have a hot cup of tea/go to the toilet by yourself/etc’. But has anyone given much thought to how big a transition it is for me? For my kids? For my husband? I’m going from being with my kids 24/7 to juggling a lot of, quite frankly,  conflicting priorities. The fact I’m doing it part time only adds to the confusion in my brain. 

However, I’ve done this before (back in 2011) and I survived it. I remember it being hard. It was nice being Maz again and not just mummy. It was nice having projects to work on. It was nice putting my experience to good use. But I missed my baby. I missed watching her develop. I missed hanging out with my new mum friends eating cake. I missed our daily walks. But in time it got easier. 

And I’ve got the added confusion of my mental health to consider. Who to tell? Who not to tell? Am I going to be judged? Am I best keeping it to myself? Actually I’ve already told my boss and a few colleagues (who read this). I’m not ashamed. I’m proud that I’m open enough to own this illness and talk about it. 

I have to be really aware of how I’m feeling over the next few weeks.  Check in with myself and keep grounded. I hope I’m going to be kind to myself. As a good friend reminded me tonight:

“Let go of the need to control the outcome. Trust the process. Trust your Intuition. Trust yourself.” ~Unknown