I thought that I was past this stage. That exhaustion could lead to a stupid mistake, which would in turn tip the scales enough to cost me another days vacation and leave me with a blinding headache.
(And seeing as I still have the blinding tear induced headache I'm going to try to keep this short).
This morning I found myself in Amsterdam, a month earlier than I needed to be (for some reason I had read July as June, and even now have the overwhelming feeling that I should be there now). On a tram heading to a conference that was not going to take place yet and almost in tears on the phone to Mrs Stace, trying to figure out how I had done something *so* stupid.
She suggested I write the day off, take a days leave and relax at home. I would've done that except that I could not get hold of my boss to discuss it. So I took the train to where I work, and not the train back to where I live.
He called me on the train, and again I was nearly in tears (with the complete realisation that I was in a carriage with about 100 other people, all of whom would be looking at me if I did). We had a chat and I said I was on my way there. he did tell me not to stress about the mistake.
I grabbed a cappuccino at the station (believe it or not they make good ones!) and walked to the office, cradling my cup in both hands like it was 20 degrees colder than it was and trying to bite back tears.
Until I reached the office, then it all went to pot. Someone asked me how I was feeling and I broke down completely. She took me to a quiet room and we had a good chat. I thought that I had calmed down and tried to get on with my work. Until I had to take something to HR and someone there asked how I was. And I was off again. We headed to a meeting room and had another chat, about how I should not push myself too hard, how everyone knows I am going through something huge right now and basically that I should cut myself some slack.
Even having that conversation made me feel a complete and utter failure. At work and with my transition - 3.5 years after telling Mrs Stace, and 18 months living as Stace and this *still* happens! I can do better work than I am doing, but at the moment it just isn't happening. I get scared that at some point people are going to realise that I am useless at my job and kick me out. And here is me helping to prove that... I told her that and she told me to stop worrying, and repeated what she had said earlier.
We agreed that I should take the day off and try to relax, which I have managed to do somewhat. The weather here has picked up again, I took another run to calm my head (it semi worked, it wandered everywhere rather than emptying, but at least it didn't obsess), then had a cheese and pickle ciabatta, followed by a peanut butter and chocolate sprinkle one (seriously, one of the best comfort foods ever, the Dutch know their stuff!).
And reading, music and snoozing in the sun followed.
Am I recovered? No, not even close. I realised that I have not taken a week off of work since September last year (maybe even August) and that is part of it. The other is the uncertainty of the operation at the moment (I want to get organised) and the fear of being put under for it.
I have a chat with my boss tomorrow, and I am not sure he is going to like it. I'm not going to do what my therapist said and go on partial sick leave just yet, even though it may help. That is a last resort for me. First I am going to say that I need some slack. I am going to look at what is on my plate and ask for help in some of it. I already have an idea what can be the first to go. First two things actually. And I am going to see if that helps.
Either way, I want to do something to stop this!