Forced Outing

So, I decided to get back to life slow and safe. It wasn’t good as I predicted it would.

I stopped showing up at work about 2 weeks ago. This is me trying to make myself work after being very depressed for a while already. It didn’t work then. That time, I tried to climb up four levels of activity at once:

  1. Getting out of the bed, and taking care of basics (showering, eating)
  2. Getting out of the house,
  3. Potential socialization
  4. Working – easy
  5. Working – medium
  6. Working – difficult.
  7. Working – difficult + extra time – Like I did in my surgical rotation almost a year ago.

Well, taking it easy to level 4 didn’t work as I’ve already stated.

It’s been a week since the meds changed. I have been meaning to get back on track, because it’s time I’m losing, my graduation keeps getting delayed. Soon, the advantage I got from graduating from high school at 14 years old will mean nothing. I won’t be the 21 year old who is a doctor. This shouldn’t matter now, but for years I thought it was my only good feature, and it’s hard to let go of that feeling.

Going back to levels of activity, I took up level 1 on monday. By tuesday I was taking care of myself, so I went on to level 2 on wednesday: I went out and got a few things from the store, visited my grandma, and took the dog out.

Yesterday I stayed at level 2. I don’t know why I didn’t try work then, maybe plain lazyness.

So it took me till Today to finally try level three. I decided to go around uni with no responsibilities whatsoever. I went just to test the waters, to wander around seeing things without worrying about working pressure.

I am at uni right now, but sadly, I don’t think I’m ready for level 3 yet. I can’t take people now, especially people in med school or med internship (which happen to be the only ones I know). I can’t go into meeting new people either. The questions they usually ask are “So what do you do?” and could unleash, an awkward, obviously fake and inadequate response, or, a huge fall of nonsense from me trying to point out that I have no idea. I find it too exhausting to lie. I can’t meet new people, but the old ones and their med talk about their med shifts is unbearable for me. I am acting strange with the people I already know.

If anyone asks me “What have you been up to?” one more time, I won’t be able to hold myself.

I have been invited to drink tonight though. People here have a funny habit of going to drink in pubs with loud music where you can’t speak to each other, but for some reason drinking and drinking while seeing each other’s mouths moving is fun for them.

Today it seems like a nice plan, as long as it doesn’t involve any social activity.

Or not really, it doesn’t. To be honest, I just want to rush home, but then I’d have my family asking about my day, and I do not have the energy to elaborate on anything or to act happy, much less to tell them how I actually feel. Also, I promised myself I wouldn’t rush home. I am not waking up tomorrow calmer and regretting not making myself stay out.

One thing brougth a smile to my face: While I was rushing out to take a bus home, a local electrical power tower exploded in the air (overload, probably). That was the closest bus stop. I couldn’t take the bus anymore and so I decided I would return to my faculty and stay at the library. People are probably going to start showing up around 8 pm, and I will be here until then.

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5 thoughts on “Forced Outing

  1. It’s so much harder than it looks to take things slowly, but I think you’re doing the right thing. The hardest thing is not to stress about the stuff you’re not doing…I still haven’t figured that bit out.

  2. I have been trying your “level 4” for a while and it is not going as well as I had hoped. I just avoided level 3 altogether. Except for feeding a fluff friend from time to time, I mostly just keep to myself. I haven’t figured out yet what I owe my friends in terms of what’s going on in my life and in my head. I want to be honest with them, but that doesn’t seem to have the promised effect.
    Anyway, I am glad to see you aren’t beating yourself up too much about not getting to the next higher level in your re-integration system (which I think is a great way to keep track of things, btw). I have been forgiving myself a lot lately for not staying on the recovery track. “Progress, not perfection,” that’s my new mantra. Hang in there, Craze.

  3. Yes, I am TRYING to take things more calmly.

    It helps that my family is supporting me, they’re not pressuring me anymore.

    Also, my psychiatrist gave me an incapacity “until the crisis resolves”, so at least uni won’t kick me out, but of course I am falling way behind.

    The rest is up to me. I am still freaking out ocassionally. This is never all or nothing… sometimes I’m fine, sometimes I’m not.

    Sometimes I wish I had an office job or something, then I could also avoid Level 3 altogether. It’s the hardest one, but it’s a prerequisite for level 4 in my case. It doens’t mean talking to people About it. It means just socializing, greeting, talking, laughing, etc.

    I like your mantra, but perfection is hard to get out of my head. I figure only potentials are perfect, anything you do with them, is not. But potentials are also stupid.

    Thank you. Hang in there you too.

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