Tuesday 1 November 2011

Progress Report = Drunk Zombie

Tonight I am starting to get a bit worried about how I'm going to get everything done that I need to this year. It's 5 weeks since I left med school, and I'm still really struggling with energy/motivation/concentration/brainfog. I feel like I've wasted a month.

I'm scared of starting to drive, because it's a completely new skill and one I don't think will come particularly naturally. I haven't started to exercise, because my local council gym with a swimming pool is 15 minutes away from the nearest bus stop and I haven't figued out one that will be more accessible. The DLA form is really hard going and the local CAB-type place has a 6 week waiting list for helping to fill them in. I still haven't sorted out a plan of action with my GP, or even managed to get an appointment with a non-locum. I haven't agreed any adaptations with the medical school for next year. I feel a bit sick thinking about it all.

Not only is my brain calling me a fail because of the above lack of progress, but I also feel like I'm not entitled to feel stressed about how much there is to do when all my friends are getting ready for their finals / enduring junior doctor-ness. And I feel like crap because I'm not able to do stuff around the house (like laundry, washing up) for Beanie when she's so busy and I'm just sitting around the house all day. And then every few days I decide that I'm being lazy and it's all in my head so totally push the boundaries and then can't do anything for the next few days.

I'm trying so hard to be compassionate towards myself. I would never call someone else in my position lazy, or say that someone was useless if they couldn't work/help around the house.

I think I had this idea that without med school taking up time I could just replace that with working towards all these things that need done. I hadn't quite got my head around just how much my attendance had fallen off, how ill I was feeling every day, how exhausted I was. The difference I suppose is how I'm choosing to spend my energy, and also that I'm trying really hard not to go over my budget and thus end up in the bood/bust cycle that was breaking me.

I keep trying to remind myself that I have been doing stuff, that I am making progress, that it will be alright. I've been to two protests, organised and run a weekend event for the charity I'm a trustee of, visited my parents and friends, made a long train journey alone in the wheelchair, live tweeted the Lords committee stage of the Welfare Reform Bill, applied for a driving license, researched and started my DLA form, ordered the new wheelchair and done a lot of reading and craft. More importantly I've got into a routine with food, meds, self-managent and sleep. I can really feel the difference, but it takes a lot of time and motivation to keep on top of it all.

I told myself at the start of this whole thing that my priorities for this year were maximising my health (physical/mental/social/spiritual), applying for DLA and learning to drive. Put like that it doesn't sound so daunting. But tonight it also seems huge and unmanageable and scary. I need the energy/motivation/concentration to make a plan and stick to it, but even the idea of that is too much. I really feel like I need some help to manage it all, but I can't really think of any way to make that happen.

Seriously, if you could see me now, you would get the brainfog thing. I look/feel like a drunk zombie. I hope it'll lift a bit tomorrow now I've had a chance to rest after the weekend...

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