The post about being two weeks out of six

I have almost finished two weeks out of six of my medical leave. I am seeing doctors galore. Lovely. I had a pulmonary visit because last year at this time, we thought I was having a pulmonary embolism. I think we have determined it was stress due to the reoccurrence of symptoms the week before I started leave. My insomnia is almost cured too, again it was clearly stress as I started to sleep once I knew I was able to step back from work. I have also started seeing a therapist to work on ways to not internalize my stress and I have my regular mental health consultant who signed off on the paperwork, so I need to touch base with her.

Unfortunately, there are still two outstanding medical issues: heart rate and hypothyroidism. I will do a blood test on Monday for the later. The first is a little more concerning. I have ‘intermittent tachycardia’ meaning my heart rate at rest will jump to the mid-100s. When I exercise, it jumps into the 160s and nearly 190 when I do cardio exercise (ie-running). At rest, it is typical to be in the mid 80s. This is still high, so I am seeing a cardiologist on Nov 2. My mom has a leaky valve and my dad has had a double by-pass with several stents added, so I guess at 41, I should get my heart checked. Hopefully, we will decide this is just how my heart works, but it is better to check than to just ignore it.

I have been exercising as I can. I ran a 10K trail race last weekend and twisted my ankle within the first 2 miles (it was after the first awesomely run mile!) I finished and the course was .5mi longer than a 10K, but that’s okay. I finished. My ankle is almost ready to run on. I will try today or tomorrow.

Mostly, I’ve found that I didn’t need to worry about not having anything to do. I am a doer. I do things. So I have found plenty to do.

I am still working on the stress and issues about returning to work in my head. I think that will be my next post, but I need to be careful. Some of you who read know my supervisor (I’m looking at you,Bev!) and I want to phrase things correctly. If I wanted to screw him over, I would have gone right to HR. I don’t want to screw him over, but I can’t go back to being under him either. So I have some decisions ahead of me.

One thought on “The post about being two weeks out of six

  1. Spacemom –

    I’ve been thinking a great deal about you, and this was before I read your more recent posts. I am so sorry you’d been struggling with so much stress.

    My heart goes out to you. I had some extreme amounts of stress when I worked in forensics. And the only solution for me was to find other work. Fortunately, I ended up finding similar work in a medical genetics laboratory. Unfortunately, when my daughters came along, trying to do the work/mom thing was impossible after two and a half years of trying to. My supervisor, who was a mother herself and could have a flexible schedule to allow herself the opportunity to deal with the unexpected (days off school, sicknesses, doctor’s appointments for the kids, etc), would not extend to me the same courtesy.

    After it went into my last performance review that I was 10 minutes late and missed an important call, I was highly upset. I never had a bad performance review until I had to try and juggle work and family. Needless to say, it was one of the main reasons why I lost any sort of loyalty to work.

    I also know that you can’t just “up and quit” what you are doing. I keep thinking of what a fantastic career you have, am sure you have worked so hard to get there, and have done some amazing stuff…but when it exacts such a severe price to your health, you have to wonder what it is all for.

    I won’t tell you what to do, except maybe try Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, Yoga classes. A good quality fish oil for hypothyroidism would help if you aren’t already taking one. I take that with b-complex. And after my menses, I take an iron supplement and a vitamin C because I always feel my energy levels sagging even more due to the blood loss.

    I hope you are feeling better now.

    Casey

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