Well, I didn't get to the gym. I dressed for the occasion after peeling myself off the bed, and that's as far as I got. Fail.
Feeling quite flat, unmotivated, numb, and yet still a bit tearful. I'm also tired, so tired.
waiting on two professionals out of three, to respond with letters of
evidence to help overturn the ESA decision made by the DWP. I spend my
life waiting... for what, I'm not always sure, but I do. Mind you, I
always expect the worse, so am trying to prepare myself for going to
tribunal to appeal. A less appealing scenario, but I guess like so many
others battling the DWP, the chances are high.
In cases like this
I do wonder why time, money, and effort is wasted to refute what
medical persons have already presented. If both doctors and professional
counsellors find a person to be too ill to work, or the process of
returning to work having a detrimental affect on that person, then why
do they clearly dispute that and mark that same person fit for work?
only does it highlight the flaws in this very crazy system, it also
spotlights the ineptness of the assessment, the assessors, and to some
extent the decision makers. True, decision makers are swayed by the
generalised, summary report – but there's no heed of the ongoing sick
note certificates from the doctors, or any recommendations by the
trained counsellors. The people who know the claimant the best.
lack of detail in the report omitted key elements of my illness, that
even though I'm 'able' on the few good days I have, it can still cause
me distress and anxiety. • The report omitted that this anxiety results
in physical symptoms which include a combination of: palpitations, chest
pains, flushes, headaches, diarrhoea, nausea. • The report omitted that
on bad days, I'm not as capable: I can't travel or go out, I
can't/won't talk to 'anyone', I can't dress, I don't wash, the last
thing I want to do is socialise, I can't cope with change, I can't keep
to a routine, I don't answer the phone. • It also omitted was the fact
that I cried through the first part of the interview, and was described
as behaving and looking normal. • The report omitted the fact that I did
need some prompting in the interview, as I didn't understand some of
the questions that I was being raced through. • The report omitted the
fact that my history does include suicidal thoughts, with an incident in
my teenage years. • The report failed to pick up on the fact that
'change' at work in April/May 2015 created stress and displacement -
triggering this depression episode, where I suffered continual emotional
breakdowns at work, lengthy periods off sick, and ultimately leaving
the full time job in April 2016 due to ill health.
• The report
has no mention or clue of how many bad days I might have in seven.
Typically to date, life permitting, I'm able to get about 3 good days in
a week, it all depends on what happens day to day. This week from and
including Monday, I've had 4 bad days so far – this includes an
emotional breakdown trying to cope with the news that I failed the ESA
assessment, resulting in thoughts of self harm, and making a call to the
Samaritans at 1.30am.
If I remember anything else the report failed to include – I shall let you know...
can only surmise that the huge lack of detail in the report is due to
the disinterested assessor failed to gather the correct, accurate, or
any real relevant information. Her main focus was on the computer
screen, rushing through the obligatory questions, not wanting
elaboration, not interacting, no interest or care for the whole picture.
rest of the week/end won't be good or bad, but spent numb, merely
hibernating in my flat, keeping myself safe from any further turmoil.
This is not only isolating, it is lonely, and generally not great for my
overall health and well being – mentally or physically. And the only
support that I'll have over the weekend is either the Samaritans, 999,
or my local A&E. I have no friends or family nearby, and my parents
fail to comprehend mental health issues. During these times I do spend a
lot of time on the computer, as this is a connection, in my control, to
the outside world.
Depression is often tied to intelligent
people, who tend to over think, which leads to worry and stress. Rinse,
repeat, slide down one level. Alongside complex mixes of genes,
background history, environment, oh so many other factors that I can't
think of right now, or am too daft to know of. What gets forgotten is
the individual personality of that person, and their level of
capabilitiness (yes, made up word) before they're taken over by this all
consuming concept of depression. While your senses and mind are
overloaded with the unruly beast, the core of you remains the same, so
even while suffering sometimes you're still able to articulate, laugh,
joke – wash, clean, travel, socialise, etc.
And the longer
you've suffered from the illness the more masterful you are in
disguising the bad, and present a picture of normality – the mask of
okayness. Its an easier route, when someone asks how you are to reply
with fine, or plodding on. Especially if you want to hang on to the few
friends you have left, after cutting yourself off during bad days. How
often are we shocked to learn that behind a tragic death of a celeb,
there lies a history of depression, tucked away in the darkness?
takes great energy, effort, and know-how to leave the place of safety,
and appear 'normal'. So often when you return home, you're exhausted. It
is a good day, to be able to muster this strength, motivation, and
capability to venture out. To be brave.
Today is not one of those days. Tomorrow may be though, as I'm running out of pizza. Please send pizza.