Song: “Sweet Home Chicago” by the Blues Brothers
I didn’t sleep that well last night. I woke up a couple of times because my back was sore. I think it’s sore because with my CPAP machine, I can sleep on my back. I never used to be able to do that and I think I’m spending a lot of time sleeping that way. I’m not used to it, so my back gets irritated.
Anyway, today wasn’t one of my best days, but it was far from the worst. I did some laundry, spent a little time writing, listened to some records, and did a lot of thinking. I’m trying to figure out where I’m at and how close to returning to work I am. I can confidently say that I’m not ready yet and I’m scared to go back. There’s no way I can return to my old job – I’ll just end up in the hospital again (or worse). I don’t even think I can work in the same field. The problem is, I have no idea about what kind of accommodations my employer can or will make, and I’m afraid to ask.
I also wish there was a sign or light or something that could tell me exactly how far I still need to go. I’ve been off work for about fifteen months and just thinking about this stuff still makes my stomach fill up with butterflies. Most of the time I can’t even see myself being able to drive to work, much less do anything productive. Baby steps, I guess. Lots of baby steps.
I’m getting a little tired of baby steps for everything. I want to be well. I don’t want to be stuck at home. I want to be a productive person again. I want to go out to restaurants with J and hang out with friends somewhere other than home. Some days it all feels really far away, though.
I’m doing my best to keep my head up and baby-stepping my way forward but it’s exhausting. I’ve had a kidney stone and I think I can say that if I could trade my OCD, anxiety, PTSD, depression, and panic disorder for another kidney stone, I’d do it in a second. At least with a kidney stone there’s something there that you can see… something that needs to be removed, and once it’s removed, you feel relief. With mental illness, it comes and goes as it pleases, nothing shows up on an x-ray, and you have to work your ass off to feel better. It’s not fair.
The good things in life are worth it, though.