I have been back at work for the past two weeks now and have really pushed myself back to ‘normality’. Pretty certain my balance and coordination was still a little ‘off’ when I first got back into my 12 and a half hour nursing shifts, however, onward and upwards is my new favourite motto. I also recently started taking fitness classes (Konga, Zumba, Rockout workout) which have been absolutely fabulous for mind, body and soul.
So work haven’t been the most understanding and it’s taking me an age to get an occupational health appointment, self- referral may present a faster route than my manager (charge nurse) referring me. I keep having to tell my ‘story’ to my colleagues when they act concerned, asking why I have been off. Doing so feels like indulging in self-pity once again which makes me feel guilty and sad. I don’t want sympathy but at the same time I felt like I had to explain (especially at first since I still didn’t feel completely, 100% recovered (I now do)).
Work also told me I had IV training the Friday before last. So get this!- we’re meant to have two weeks notice to fill out a chunky calculations book- this I didn’t know about and the IV training I was meant to attend was the following Monday. So I lit had two days to fill out this workbook I never knew about and to add insult to injury I was working day shift Saturday and Sunday. I ended up having to go back to the ward and work a 12 and a half hour shift there because I was being put on the course in place of another staff nurse so they never had a record of my name.*face palm*
My thoughts and feelings have been very ‘up and down’ these past few weeks. At present I feel emotionally stronger than ever. I have read somewhere that emotional lability can be a symptom of clinically isolated syndrome/multiple sclerosis. I guess deciding whether that’s cause or effect is challenging though.
I feel sad and undeserving when explaining to colleagues what I was off with. I think I feel frustrated at myself for something that was beyond my control and for what I perceive as ‘letting my team down’ by being off work and perhaps leaving them short. Maybe that’s a sign of the times in the NHS and the result of pressures felt at all levels.
I think these feelings are natural to experience after a neurological episode. Everyone is wrapped up in their own issues and in such a fast-paced work place there’s really no time for special allowances or much compassion for other staff members. Plus I don’t want to be treated out of the ordinary because I look and feel fine now.
My action plan is to be positive, get an occupational health appointment if only for the sake of having a paper trail and to keep doing what I’m doing- healthy living and taking Vit B12, Calcium and magnesium, Ginkgo biloba, Omega 3 and Vit D.
I’ve not really gone in to too much depth in this reflective account because after feeling so vulnerable throughout this period, I’d rather not drudge up all the negative feelings that I had been experiencing but I feel it’s important to write a blog and keep track of my progress. Peace out.