Feeling Beaten Down by a Rough Work Week

Today, I’m trying to recover from a tough, exhausting week at work.  I wish I had a couple of more Sundays to recover as I don’t feel up to going back to work tomorrow.  But Mondays always come around too fast and I don’t have a choice really.

I’m exhausted from this past week.  My pain is high.  My body aches.  My back and neck ache from too many hours in front of a computer.  My eyes feel tired and don’t want to focus on things.  I feel beat up.  I have bruises on my legs and feet and I don’t know where they came from.  I think my feet are bruised because they’ve hurt so much this week.  Sometimes I bruise in areas that hurt especially badly for a while.

I work in the marketing field. I put together proposals that will hopefully win my company more work.  My job is deadline driven. Deadlines aren’t good for me anymore.  I used to thrive on busy days working hard to meet a deadline and get a proposal out on time.  Now, long days are too much for me. I had to stop working full-time (40 hours) and become a part-time employee only working 30 hours a week.  I just couldn’t work 8 hour days anymore. Last week, to get the proposal I was working on done in time, I worked through lunches and I worked late. I don’t get paid for any hours I work over 30, but I couldn’t abandon the two ladies in my department to do my work as well as their own.  So I pushed myself.  Hard.  I worked an extra 5 or 6 hours this week.  By Thursday, I was exhausted.  I had to ask my boss if I could come in later on Friday so I could get some more sleep.  Of course I didn’t get any extra sleep.  I woke up at my normal time of 6:15am, even though my alarm was set for 8am.  I couldn’t get back to sleep, so instead I went for a walk and did some yoga before going into work.  I was determined to leave on time Friday, which is 2:30pm.  I left at 3:30pm.  The proposal wasn’t done when I left but I couldn’t do anymore. I finished my portion and left it to my boss to finish it and get it printed and shipped to meet our deadline.

I came home and all I wanted to do was lay down in bed and not move again, but I had a friend’s birthday party to go to.  This friend is very support of me and my disease and I had bought her a few small gifts I wanted to give her.  I was determined to go and told myself I would just leave early.  But at dinner there were friends I hadn’t seen in about a year.  It was fun to catch up with them.  It was great to chat with friends and pretend for a bit like everything was normal.  But it wasn’t.  I could feel my pain rising as dinner went on and could feel my energy evaporating, but I ignored it.  I wanted to visit with my friends.  I needed some time with people who know me and support me.  This week was so draining that I needed a boost from my friends.  My boss is clueless about fibromyalgia and what I go through. She means well.  She’s a great boss.  But, like so many people, she has no knowledge of fibromyalgia and no concept of what I go through.  She expected me to finish this proposal, and I did finish my part of it, despite the physical cost to me.  I pushed myself too hard. I put my job ahead of my health.

So what damage has my invisible disease caused me from pushing myself too hard this week?  I am utterly exhausted.  I spent most of yesterday in bed. My hands ache badly from all the writing and typing I did at work this week.  They feel bruised and my fingers look swollen. My wrists hurt and feel even weaker than normal. My feet are bruised and feel swollen.  My back hurts.  My arms hurt.  I woke up Saturday and it hurt to move them.  My tremor is bad.  My eyes are bloodshot and puffy.  My neck pops and cracks every time I move it.  My neck always pops as my vertebrae slip out of alignment, but I’ve never had my neck pop as much in such a short period of time as it’s done this weekend.  My jaw aches from my bad TMJ. My ribs feel like I was in a fight.  It hurts to move and sometimes I get stabbing pains shooting around my ribs.  When those happen, it even hurts to breathe.    I’m sure I’ve missed aches and pains I could add to this list.

I did my best this week to not overdo it.  I asked for help from my coworkers and got it.  I never used to ask for help.  I made a to do list and focused on getting one item done and moving to the next, instead of getting overwhelmed and upset by how much was left to and how little time there was left to do it.  I used all my tricks to manage the pain and stress.  Deep breathing, relaxation methods, stretching.  But none of my tricks were a match from how draining a week this was. Who knows, maybe I would be in much worse shape right now if not for doing these things.

When I look back on my words it seems to me like I’m whining and I hate whining.  I am not a whiner.  I’m having hard getting back into the  positive outlook I work so hard to maintain.  I’m so drained by the last week.  I think I needed to acknowledge the toll the past week has taken on me.  To be honest about how I’m feeling.  I have a bad habit of ignoring what my body is telling me.  I think I’m trying to be honest with myself and my body so I can feel better tomorrow and get back into my positive state of mind.

So today I will rest and watch football.  I’ll take a nap if I’m lucky enough to feel like I could actually sleep.  I’ll go to bed early and hope that this coming week will be easier on me.  Tomorrow is a new day, a fresh start. Today may be bad, but you never know what tomorrow will bring.

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8 thoughts on “Feeling Beaten Down by a Rough Work Week

  1. Journaling Pain says:

    Unlike your boss, I do know how you feel. I’m so sorry you are suffering so much this weekend…thank God for weekends! I, too, had a rough week and was feeling pretty bad but not quite as bad as what you are going through right now. My prayers are with you…hang in there! Maybe this week won’t be so taxing…I’ll pray that that it won’t be. Good luck.

    • painfighter says:

      Thank you so much for your support. It means a lot. I don’t know what I’d do without our online blogging community. Everyone is so supportive. I’m sorry you had a rough week too. Do you work as well? I’m feeling a little better. Just writing about how I was feeling cleared my mind. I’ve got a bit of energy now and just did my daily exercise, although I went really easy on myself. I think this week at work will be busy but not insanely busy like last week was. I hope both of us have a better week!

      • Journaling Pain says:

        Sorry to be so late in replying…school has started and I don’t have as much time to keep track online. I do work, as a housekeeper. Very physical job and it causes me a lot of pain. But it’s all I can get right now. Looking forward to getting done with school and getting a job that isn’t so physically demanding.

  2. slsteacher says:

    I admire both of you, and can totally relate to your pain and frustration of trying to work and deal with my disease! I pray that both of you will have a better week and that your pain will ease up some!! Take the time to take care of yourselves (as much as possible) and know that you are not alone in your fight to get thru each day and to remain positive! I will be praying for both of you and feeling a little less alone myself! 🙂

    • painfighter says:

      Thank you! Our little online blogger community is a big help to me. I feel a lot less isolated now than I used to. Chronic pain isolates you from others as they don’t know what you’re going through. I hope you’ll join us. The more the merrier 🙂

  3. chiquitar says:

    It doesn’t sound like whining to me. We pain sufferers sometimes need to remind ourselves it’s OK to talk about what’s honestly going on with us in our safe areas. We have to pretend too much of the time as it is. I hope you have a better week next week!

    • painfighter says:

      Thank you! I do think I needed to be very honest about how much pain I was in this weekend. After I’d written the post, I felt much more clear minded and relaxed. I was able to focus more on resting and feeling better for the work week ahead. Part of me knows its not whining, but another part of me thinks it is. Maybe one day all of me while realize its not whining to be honest about how my body is feeling. I hope you have a good week too!

  4. julia says:

    Thank you for your honest post, it makes a big difference for others out there to read that they are not alone in this. I too have a tendency to push myself too far at work, I’ve tried to work 35hrs, but end up working 40 (instead of 45-50) and then resented being paid as a part time worker. It was hard leaving my busy project team to leave the office at 3.30pm. Never mind the fact I started some days at 7am, I still felt like I was letting the team down.

    I am so glad to hear that despite the long hours you managed to make time for the yoga and other stress management techniques. It’s easy to let them slip when you are busy.

    Keep smiling, you are doing great.
    Cheers
    Julia

    http://healinghips.wordpress.com/

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