What a day at work!
I decided it was time to explain to my immediate boss and ultimate boss (the headteacher, I’m a teacher) exactly why I’ve been off work for 3 weeks. I explained the depression, the drinking, the panics, everything.
They were brilliant, incredibly sympathetic, really supportive and full of love. They both offered lots of help if I feel I need it. Couldn’t have gone better!
I feel like I’ve lost the weight of a small elephant off my shoulders. Not that the confessional was easy. I cried, and cried, and cried. I’m not sure why really because I don’t feel sad. I think it’s like when you pick a scab to feel the pain. Or perhaps it’s like how I always cry when I’m sharing sad news with somebody. Like when you’ve split up with somebody or somebody has died. The words cut again as they come out. Maybe that’s why I’m a car crash sometimes, perhaps I’m too emotional.
So, nothing more to fear there. I have tonnes of support and I can have a laugh about what I’m doing, what I’m going through.
Or totes amazeballs as my daughter would say…
There’s a large gap between day one and day two, larger than the usual anyway. This is because I went to the pub and succumbed. I didn’t even try to fight. Pathetic really. Inner voice said it would be ok to have beer, instead of wine. Once I’d approved that I was a goner.
So, I’ve started again. Day one is 9th December.
I’m also back at work so there’s greater incentive. I need to be on my toes and out of the door early.
I’m glad to be clear headed today, it’s been a difficult one. Some political and personal issues came up that I’m going to need a strong and sober head to deal with.
Keep the faith!X
So at 5pm on a Friday afternoon I find myself sitting down to write this story.
It’s quiet and calm in our house tonight. Children occupied with screens of some shape or another. Cats dozing. Curtains closed against the cold and the dark. Nothing at all to suggest the monumental shift that I have just had in the way I see the world.
I haven’t been to work for 3 weeks. I didn’t know I was going to be off work for 3 weeks. I just woke up one Monday morning and fell apart. I had hit my own personal wall. There was nothing left, no more strength to make sense of my world. So I stopped. I literally stopped. I think I had what they used to call a nervous breakdown in the olden days.
I went to my GP and he signed me off work and prescribed me sertraline.
It has taken 3 weeks to reach where I am today. Beginning to feel more real, but at the same time realising that my problem isn’t depression. Not really. I mean, yes I am depressed and have been for 15 or more years, but depression is the symptom not the cause.
The cause is alcohol.
I’ve been drinking heavily and regularly since I was about 15 years old. Stopping or reducing only for pregnancies.
Alcohol has been my closest and most reliable friend for most of my life. It has stayed with me when others passed through and moved on. But now it’s time to say goodbye to that loyal friend, because we can’t stay together. Alcohol is a fake friend who makes me feel physically and emotionally drained. It makes me neglect my children and my job, and it makes me selfish and mean hearted. It makes me fat and unhappy, it fills me with guilt and makes me look like an idiot when it’s around.
I am deleting alcohol from my contacts list, un-friending it and I’m changing my number. Enough.