Depression has been worsening. It takes a lot of energy to get up from the couch. Boredom is palpable, pressing me down into the space that I sit. All the things that there is to do I’ve done before and there is no urge to do them again. Inertia. I’m reminded of a piece of wisdom a dear one of mine once said. She’d trumpet it like a battle call, ‘A body in motion stays in motion.’
What gets me in motion is that the dogs need to go out. Once that task is done, I stand looking at the couch, a profound longing to take my seat again fills me. The battle wars within me. I could just sit and close my eyes and drift. Nothing to do and nothing needs to be done. I’m tired of sitting and reading or playing games on my phone. I could just sit and close my eyes, meditate. Thinking about meditation reminds me therapy and things we could be doing to help ourselves. It would be easier to just sit on the couch and surrender to inertia. Instead, we bring ourselves to the laptop and blog.
This is the third or fourth week I’ve been on paid leave from work. I admitted to my employer that I was experiencing side effects from Tropiramate; cognitive disfunction -being easily distracted and unable to concentrate. I also let my employer know that I have stopped taking Tropiramate, but that didn’t prevent a series of events from unfolding. My employer sent me home that evening and then Human Resources got involved. They wanted a form from the American Disabilities Act (ADA) to be filled out by the medication management team so my employer can decide if I can keep my job. It took the medication management team a week to fill out the ADA paperwork. Now I wait for my employer’s Human Resource agent to decide that the ADA presents them with information that makes them feel good about keeping me on staff.
I miss working and I miss my job. I’m on the fence about missing the people I work with. I like feeling useful, as if what I do has meaning or purpose. I want to go back to work. I’m also afraid that if I go back to work that I won’t be able to stay focused and do the job well. I dissociate at work all the time. There are several of us who work, most of us do the job very well. But stress is a trigger and there is plenty of stress at work. And then there are non-work related stresses that cause triggering. This last time dissociation was triggered by one of my co-workers having a heart attack. I didn’t see it, but I heard about it. I immediately started having flash backs to when the husband had his heart attack. The chaos that ensued, his drama and trauma being in the ICU unit for several weeks, how hard it was to watch him suffer, how it felt to cope with his bout of insanity brought on by his medicine withdrawl and PTSD.
Being here at home these past couple of weeks has given me the opportunity to indulge in drawing portraits and learning more about how to draw. I’ve also started crafting a hand fan and unpacked a box from our last move. I’m being paid to stay home from work and it doesn’t feel good. The question of ‘what am I going to do if my employer decides to terminate me’ looms over me. If I were to actually retire I’d take classes at the community school to fill my time. But if I were to retire now I don’t have enough to live on. I have five more years before I qualify for Social Security unless I want to push for disability. I don’t want to retire, I want to work. The work I do requires the ability to concentrate and make decisions. On bad days, when stress is high dissociation interferes with my ability to concentrate and make decisions. Perhaps I should find another job. I’ve dusted off my resume and started looking for work. Now if only I could get all of us on the same page for finding a new job instead of letting inertia nail us to the couch.