Wednesday, February 25, 2015
The State of Mental Health
Last week I was feeling a bit lost. I had all kinds of things to do but no motivation to do them. I was dreading every session of rehab. I was tired a lot. Was this some kind of post-transplant depression taking hold or something less serious?
I made an appointment with my shrink to sort things out - my shrink who I love and hadn't seen since I was in the hospital post-transplant!
Here is what it boils down to: I am in the midst of an incredible amount of change right now. I am trying to find my new normal, I am meeting new people and taking on new volunteer activities - all while trying to be mindful that I am still recovering from major surgery. That is a lot for anyone.
Then there is my energy: the thing is, I feel about 70%. Normal recovery for lung transplant is 6-12 months. If you chart the one year trajectory, I am way ahead of the pack. If you chart the 6-month path, I am still above the curve. So what I am feeling - the fatigue - is pretty much normal.
The other thing I discovered is that part of my hesitation is coming from the fact that it's just plain scary to put myself out there. I know I am a good writer but I am rusty since the last time I worked. I want to produce a good product and impress people with my work but I'm afraid that I'm not as good as I used to be. I know that my transplant medications have affected me mentally and I have a fear that will somehow translate to my writing or even how people perceive me. Ugh.
I know it's probably not true. My brain knows that but my heart doesn't yet. I think it's going to take just jumping in, trying my hand at things again. That's the only way to prove myself wrong. This week, I have my first chance to write a news story for the Lung Transplant Foundation. I hope that I do an awesome job and that they love me. If not, I will use it as a stepping stone. Either way I will learn something new.