I haven't really blogged about this much, but I have been going through a phased return to work after an ME/CFS crash a while ago. It has been fraught with pitfalls and disturbing situations, but I hope we are now someway to sorting all this out and sanity resuming! I am seriously hoping for a reduction in the stress that I have had to endure over the last, erm, well...... 11months all in all!
What I was striving for was a return to full time hours. The powers that be were not very keen to let me do this, and I don't think it has much to do with their concern for my health!
It's immensely hard to have such a huge knock to your health-an ME/CFS crash, and to have to try to make it back to work. Then to have to go through situations which question your work, your honesty about your health and to have to endure comments which are at best discriminatory is really piling on the pressure. All the pay, conditions and decisions are taken out of your hands and the only one who knows how you and your body is coping -you- is not consulted! All this with the weight of an elephant in your holdall!
When I look at it like this I think it's a small miracle that I have managed any recovery from the 'crash of '09' at all! In my brain-fogged state it is often easy to sit and ponder why this crash has been so much more difficult to return from, and to assume that it is because of a worsening of my ME/CFS or even (God forbid!) that I'm not a spring chicken any more!
This illness is so complicated and reactive to stress. This crash and subsequent climb back have been my longest and most difficult to date, due in no small part to the 'stressful' feel of the process specifically put in place to aid and enable my return to work. CRAZY!
I am sure however, that this process goes quite smoothly for some people, and if all advice from GP's or Occupational Health is respected by the bosses it can have great results. Unfortunately it is the patient/employee who suffers when this does not happen. I can only speak about the process as it was for me.
It would be easy (but not advisable) for me to point fingers of blame and resort to a bit of dirt-dishing, but I won't. I want only what I have wanted all along, for my elephant and I to return to work and to be able to just get on with the job I love to the best of 'our' ability.