Time Off Work: Week 1

After a few months of complete upset, hate and confusion at work, last Thursday was unfortunately the last straw for me and I became super overwhelmed; I couldn’t focus on my work whatsoever, nothing was getting done and I was just an anxious mess that felt tight chested from the moment I left the house, till the moment I came back from work.

Back home, I was absolutely fine. It was like my zipped up chest had finally been undone. But whenever I thought about work or having to go back the next day, my chest got tight again and I had to hold back tears. I think I finally hit my breaking point.

It takes a lot for me to take a day off work. In a recent post, I spoke about not really knowing what to do when I’m not working; and in consequence the day is typically spent just feeling super super guilty. But this time just felt entirely different. This time I felt like my head was spinning a thousand miles a minute, without really doing or saying much, and paranoia – far worse than I’ve ever felt – had set in and was pretty much here for the long haul.

I was signed off work for two weeks under the notion of ‘stressed’.

If only it was stress, ey?

More on this nugget later.

I thought I’d just write up what I’ve done to try show what people might do on their time off, or give people a little hope that they’re A) killing it and being super productive or B) aren’t the only ones who absolutely flunked at the time off arrangement.

Truth is, week 1 has actually proved I was – and am – way more depressed than I had thought. Sure, I had paranoia and crushing anxiety. But depression? Well, I thought those days were over (ha, I say this like every other week after another bout of depression hits).

The doctor asked me what I was going to do with my time off to help myself, and I really thought I knew: I’d schedule some hardcore content for the ol’ blog after having such a good amount of feedback from my previous post, I’d apply for some jobs, work on my portfolio, hey, maybe even start my own shop (I was feeling very hopeful). Then of course, do the expected exercise, get my house in order and just take my mind off of work.

What I’ve done?

I’ve laid in bed for hours on end every day. Whether it’s playing a game on my phone, watching YouTube videos I have no interest in, or just laying there, I’ve done pretty much nothing.

I headed out a few times to pick up a few essentials, I’ve had two bowls of cereal a day and nothing much else.

Insomnia kicked it on Monday night, and I didn’t sleep until Thursday night where I slept FOR THE WHOLE NIGHT AND WOW THIS IS WHAT IT FEELS LIKE TO BE A PARENT TO MY OWN MIND. YOU GO, BRAIN, I AM SO PROUD OF YOU.

One. Whole. Night. Guys. This would be a milestone if I was a newborn.

In the hours I have been awake, I’ve felt extremely numb. I’ve spent a lot of time trying to find crap to read on the internet, or attempting to jump start the emotional cycle again through comedy or tragic films and nothing has done the trick. I found myself just watching without really connecting to anything.

On the Thursday, I finally got my act together enough to clean the flat. But once I sat down to work on my blog and apply for some jobs, I was right back into a crappy mindset, and ended up back in bed feeling worthless.

As soon as I think about work or doing something productive, my head seems to think ‘what’s the point?’ It doesn’t seem to care that if I don’t do anything now, I’ll still be stuck later.

My boyfriend works 12 hours shifts as a student nurse. He leaves the house at about 6, and gets home about 8:30. But, on Thursday he finished early so we planned a nice walk and some fish and chips. He had Friday off too, so we could spend some time together at last.

But, he’d made plans to game with his bestie midday, and honestly I broke.

Truth be told, I cannot stand being alone. I hate it. I get super low and just feel like absolute shit. And after so much time alone, I couldn’t seem to keep my feelings to myself anymore and just burst.

It probably wasn’t even an issue, but it was an accumulation of horrible feelings that had built up during the week and came tumbling down when there was finally someone around to listen. I just needed someone to help me face how lonely I was, and understand just how awful I felt.

And because of all of this, I’ve booked another doctor appointment next week to discuss my options.

Sure I’d been lazy all week because I couldn’t be motivated to get through any work, but I hadn’t planned to make it anyone else’s business. I didn’t think it would be such a big deal. But I guess that’s how everything builds up and creeps up on ya?

You’ll see me on Instagram a lot when I’m alone; I guess I’m just checking in and wasting time. But when I’m not making fun of myself or chatting on Instagram, I’m literally just sat here. Or laid in bed hoping the day goes quickly.

And it’s in these times where I think to myself ‘why did you have to sign me off for stress?’ Stress puts to onus on me, when In fact my job isn’t stressing me out: It’s the people, the environment, the treatment from other staff that’s made me feel like this.

But when signed off for stress? Well that’s nothing a 2 week holiday can’t solve, right? And then right back to work.

Except there’s even more anxiety now; about going back and being treated differently, being assumed ‘weak’ because clearly my job is stressing me out.

I’m not okay but I’m also not stressed. I’m anxious, and paranoid and depressed. I’m upset and lonely and scared. I’ve reached the dark pit and am still looking for the way out.

And that’s okay to say.

I just have to pick myself up again next week and try again. This time with less pressure and strict guidelines to follow. And perhaps less naps.

If you want to join the fun over on Instagram, click here (especially for kitten updates)


  1. Charlie✨ (@charliesevern)

    I’m so sorry you’re going through such a tough time, it must get lonely being by yourself a lot, hopefully, Eddie can ease that for you even if just by a little, having something to take care of helps me a lot. I think the doctors could have been a little more empathetic without just saying “stress” and listened to you a bit more. I love cleaning when I feel a bit crap even just organising a small area feels like an accomplishment and I love how refreshing it is having a clean tidy place. If I’m feeling crappy I take my mind off it by doing things I love; mainly blogging but If I don’t feel like writing I love taking photos, I sit down with all my makeup, lay it out a nice background and just take photos, they might go on Instagram (I may never use them) but it always helps, also reading and I love the app “calm” for when I’m feeling crappy or in the past when I’ve struggled with sleeping!. I’m always here if you want a chat and I’ve really enjoyed speaking with you recently! xxx

    Charlie | http://www.charlieswonderland.co.uk

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jessica Forrester

      Awh thankyou so much for this, and for reading 🙈 and I know what you mean, I love tidying to take my mind off things! I love the idea of just being creative and productive. I’ll have a look at the calm app too. Likewise, thankyou! Xxx


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