The rash and the realisation

After returning from a disastrous trip to Barcelona,  where I was rendered incapable of anything but sitting in my hotel room nibbling rice cakes, I was firmly in denial about what was making me feel so utterly rubbish. I was still feeling tired, sporadically nauseous and antsy, but just about managed to get through each working day. Until a week later… My back was really itchy. And I mean REALLLLLLY. I couldn’t concentrate for it. A trip to the docs  confirmed shingles, and five days off work as I’m in direct contact with the general public. Brilliant! I thought. That explains the meh-ness! A few tablets and I’ll be right as rain! NOPE. The day before I was due back at work,  I popped round to see my sister, who lives very close by. Before I knew it, I was sobbing big fat snotty unbidden tears all over my sister’s shoulder. I felt TERRIBLE. No energy, no appetite, achy and nauseous.  Even though I’m pretty sure I was incoherent, my wonderful sister knew what to do. She took charge, almost intervention style! By this point, I was refusing to move off the sofa or speak to anyone.  She liased with my GP on the phone, collected a two week sick note from the docs, took it into my work and came with me to a face to face appointment with doc the next day. All, I might add, with her three children to look after!  At the doctors, I again broke down in tears. It was gently suggested that anxiety and depression were to blame. I was so exhausted that I couldn’t argue, and totally relieved that someone had taken charge of me.

I took away a prescription for anti anxiety tablets, and suddenly it occured to me just how un-normally I’d been behaving. I’d gradually isolated myself from all conversation and activities,  would barely leave the house,  and hadn’t showered for days. I’m usually a very active, outdoorsy person so this was very much out of character for me. Why hadn’t I noticed??! I was scared. Scared that I was having a full on nervous breakdown, scared of what my friends and family would think,  scared of losing my job…

I knew that the next few weeks would be tough. But I couldn’t feel much worse..could I?


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