About a decade ago I was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. The journey in managing this has been like rollercoaster. Somedays it feels like there have been more downs and loop-de-loops than ups. As with many people the fears and stress of Covid 19 has affected my life.
When Covid started I was working as administrative in a dental lab. Due to my health I was considered high risk for infection and placed on medical leave. The lab brought me back from leave with new tasks to work from home. I became manager of the team I worked with before as well as the new accounts receivable representative. Let me just say that I was not comfortable being manager of the case distribution team as I believed it should have been given to another. There was one whom had worked the position for many years and had trained me. I was worried I would ruin the relationship I had built with her prior to this. Regardless of my feelings I worked to the best of my ability to ensure the team was happy and productive while bringing past due accounts current.
In August 2020 I was handed another position, accounts payable. I feel that normally I would have been asked to take on a new role or at least had another role taken away when given a new one however that is not what happened. The lab had me working three positions at once. There was a lot to do for the accounts payable position as it appeared to not have been processed in a couple years as such there was a lot of overtime. During this transition my neighbor lost her husband and I was assisting with handling all the paperwork and arrangements for her during her grief. I would work from her house and balance both work and assisting her.
Balance may not be the correct term or I thought I was balancing however I was not. In October I had a bit of a breakdown. I was so tired from working 11-13 hour days that I stopped assisting my neighbor as much so I could work and sleep. To clear my mind after work each day I started to take a drive with our dog Rosco. He loved it and watching him with his head out the window brought me some semblance of joy. Things did not get better for me emotionally or mentally as I had hoped however. I was able to hand over the case distribution manager position to the person whom should have had it all along in May of 2021, still no relief.
In June I stated to feel myself closing off from the world and crying a lot. I started job hunting but it was challenging to find a job I was qualified for which worked from home. I was not willing to work in an office during this pandemic and most positions I was qualified for either did not interview me or at location. Slipping into depression with anxiety level rising, I cried more and took more drives till my niece came to spend a month with me. We watched movies, played the Wii, spent a day out with a friend but my tears were out of control as the owner of the lab started putting even more positions on my plate. He wanted me to handle HR and payroll on top of all the accounting. At this point I had just caught up so I was able to reduce my hours to almost no overtime. He felt I could handle all positions with no overtime if he did one on one training with me. That was my breaking point or I should say Ash’s.
The beginning of July Ash told me to quit my job and he took over all the finances for us. There were stress, tears and embarrassment on my part as I had build debt doing projects around the house. The lab picked up all the equipment and files from my house the day I quit and that was the end of that. But the transition to stay home wife and handing over my debt caused strain on my relationship with my husband. We are getting better day by day and I agreed to counseling.
Counseling is helping and enlightening me to thoughts and new feelings I had not had before or had not looked at this way before. She wants to dig in at the very base of my and work out to help me so we are starting my how I view myself and treat myself. Boy is this challenging for me. Growing up I have always felt as a protector to my sister and friends. Always put friends and family before myself in all matters. I even spent sleepless nights with a co worker in the hospital because I thought that maybe I could help her by being there to support her.
My counselor asked me how I viewed and felt about myself. I replied that I was an average curvy clutz. She laughed a bit then asked me what I loved about myself. That was a hard question for me to answer because I only could say my eyes and heart. We talked more and build a homework plan” for me. To find one thing about myself that I am thankful for/like about my body each day. Building self awareness and self love. Sounds easy right? Wrong!
Granted this is the first week of this “assignment” however it is challenging for me. So far I have my eyes, curly hair, smile and sense of humor. Today I am trying to find something when nothing comes to mind. I am not comfortable in my body due to shape, past injuries, health restrictions. So what should I or do I do about it?
I have decided that today I will like my ability to find one thing to change and do something about it. I am not in the best of shape or health however I don’t think that focusing on diet/exercise exclusively will be the best plan. How about I focus on accepting how I look now? I feel that I I can accept it I can learn to love my body. Don’t get me wrong, I will be eating healthier and trying to tone my body but maybe accepting who I am now will make it easier to appreciate the accomplishments going forward?
I found this article which I think may be helpful and is basically what I am going to start with. https://www.thezoereport.com/fashion/how-nyc-tastemaker-elena-taber-makes-every-minute-count