I was struggling to work. I was failing. This was making me feel worthless. A failure. And depressed. You work So damn hard to do something and you cannot function at your job, cannot concentrate, you are so fatigued mentally and physically, trying to think through the pain… that your performance seriously suffers. Then you miss work when the pain is mind-blowing level, unable to drive, unable to think, unable to move. And then you feel that profound guilt. And how much you suck.

So you go on disability, or I am trying to anyway because my emotional stability is taking a turn down. I don’t do well when I struggle to do something I just can’t and fail. I keep pushing and fail anyway. And it crushes me. And I feel my only way out is death in the end. I wanted to not get to that point this time.

But you have these feelings like you are a failure. It is your weakness that led to all this. If you could just Push through the Pain more. And ignore those depressive thoughts. And come to work in high pain anyway. Just suffer and do it. But of course, productivity would take a nose dive then. Considering the errors I made on the days they called me in any way.

My psychologist says we have to separate ourselves from our pain. As in I am not the failure. He asked me to say something more realistic. So I said ‘My body is failing me‘ To which we laughed. He said it was more realistic to say that I tried my damnedest. I want to work. I want to have a career. Financial stability. But I just cannot because it is beyond my capacity and limits. Not that I am personally a failure, it is just beyond my pain limitations.

It made me feel better when he said it. It did. I understand it is the limitations of my body making it impossible to work. He wants me to think of the next step. How to manage my day. Ensure my depression is managed. My sleep cycle. And I replace work with something that interests me. I, on the other hand, am thinking about the step before which is my appeal to insurance company for long-term disability. I don’t understand what they believe disabled is if it isn’t FM, chronic intractable migraines, and depression. But it was difficult last time. And they may deny me. The places my brain goes when I think about that are not pleasant. Can’t go on disability and can’t work? What would any depressed person think in that scenario? But I am telling myself I don’t know yet. I don’t know how it will play out. I just have to try to manage my emotions as best I can and let my doctor fight for me. And I will write my letter, which I doubt means anything to them but at least makes me feel like I can explain a little about what it feels like to me. I will try and be precise with the symptoms and impact.

Maybe it isn’t my fault. But I still feel horrible about it. It is like setting someone up for failure by placing them in a no-win situation but telling them ‘they are perfectly capable of doing it’. And when they fail, of course, they feel like a failure. Do that enough and of course, your self-worth suffers.

2 thoughts on “I am not a failure

  1. This is exactly how I felt my last year in grad school. My body was falling apart limb by limb and no matter how I tried to accommodate my symptoms, I failed. Leaving was so hard and I felt purpose-less until I started blogging and writing. I’m fortunate that my partner can support me, although it’s tight. The application process itself is disabling. But I hope we have come far enough that more and more insurance companies recognize FM.


    1. Yeah, I remember that myself. I also had a problem with my last year of grad school. It was a difficult time and actually the reason I didn’t pursue my phd. At the time, you think things will improve. But they don’t.

      Liked by 1 person

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