Bit of an update on my situation. I feel strange writing posts like this because it seems egocentric. Why would my life be interesting to anyone? Do I have anything to say that hasn’t been said before? But then I think that even if my particular story isn’t special or unique, the story of mental illness needs to be heard. And I want to contribute to that.
Monday I finished with a partial hospitalization program following a week or so long period of being extremely depressed and suicidal. I have been off work since April 4. I work full-time as a registered behavior tech. I do ABA therapy with toddlers who have autism. Toward the end of the partial program when I did my FMLA paperwork the psychiatrist at the hospital and I agreed that May 9 would be a good day for me to return to work. That way I’d have time to see how I adjust to med changes and practice new skills I’ve learned before I start working again.
I also filed a short-term disability claim through my health insurance since I have paid into that as part of my benefits at work. If they approve it, they will pay 2/3 of my wages for the time I’ve been out of work (or maybe just the time I was actually in the partial program). It might be a while before that whole thing gets resolved, though.
Thursday I drove to my mom’s farm about 6-7 hours away. I’m going to stay here for a few more days and then head home. My mom is one of my favorite people and spending time with her always makes me feel better. Plus the farm is a very relaxing place to be.
Yesterday I talked to my project manager and department manager at work. They have been so cool and understanding about this. Part of me feels like I don’t deserve their kindness and is convinced that they secretly hate me, but my mom reminds me that I’ve always worked really hard and been a good employee. They asked if I would like to do a couple of weeks of part-time to ease back into things, and I was pretty happy about that. The idea of jumping in full-time was making me pretty nervous.
So I am VERY lucky in terms of circumstances right now. I’m so grateful that I have this kind of support. I know a lot of people don’t have this. My first 9 years of dealing with mental illness were totally different than this–no money, no insurance, shitty circumstances, very little support. I know what it’s like to not be able to catch a break and deal with MDD and BPD on top of that. I’m incredibly thankful to have what I have now.
I just have to do my part and keep working on what I learned in the partial program. I have to work on DBT and CBT skills every day. I have to be proactive about taking care of myself.