Monday, 8 May 2017

My Life: The last few months

Guess who's back?

Oh what an awful couple of months I've had, my health took a nosedive and I'm being monitored with borderline diabetes, I've been too tired to do anything so my weight has ballooned to nearly 16 stone! (I feel sick with myself writing that). However on the plus side I had my ESA appeal last month and it was thrown out within 15 minutes, the doctor and judge just couldn't believe that I had been deemed fit for work by Atos and couldn't apologise enough for what I had been through - even though it wasn't the judge or doctor's fault.

I definitely think the last 7 months of stress and worry over the whole benefits process is what caused me to be poorly. Just to recap, I received my form back in April last year and duly filled it in listing all my ailments, aches and pains. I was called for a medical in July and deemed fit for work and forced to sign on in September. Despite my doctor issuing sick notes I was put in the position of having to choose whether or not to submit them, you see you are only allowed one extended period of sickness whilst claiming JSA which is 13 weeks, after that you either sign on and seek work or you don't sign on and try to live off, well, nothing, foodbanks or hand me outs. Child benefits are not enough to live off and they are for Squiggle, not me, so I had to seek "proper" work every week, apply for jobs which I knew full well I wouldn't be able to do and go to work focused interviews which just seemed to make me feel even more useless than I already do. I say proper in quotation marks as I've tried my hand at being self employed in the past but that's even harder when you don't know from one day to the next how you'll feel. I felt guilty taking on jobs and then having to cancel at the last minute as I was too poorly to do them.
I have had enough with the stigma of being labelled lazy, work shy, bone idle, as well as people commenting on how lucky or good it must be for me not to work. Well maybe they are the lucky ones, lucky enough to be able to get up every day without fail, lucky enough to leave the house and go to work without feelings of anxiety and fear of embarrassing themselves in public, lucky enough to earn a wage that will allow them to live a more comfortable life than me, lucky enough to eat without being sick or suffering from exploding diarrhoea, lucky enough to not have to shovel pills down their necks like sweeties. Yes I get to stay at home, but I'm usually bedridden with chronic pain, or spending time hovering over the toilet not knowing which end will evacuate first. I make the most of the days that I do feel well, but then end up regretting it for days after as my body catches up with itself. I worry that I'm a crap friend as I don't make plans to go out or if I do I cancel them at the last minute, I am really grateful that my friends still think to include me in their invites even if I never go. I worry that I'm a crap mum, because I have upset Squiggle sometimes by cancelling planned days out, it breaks my heart when I hear him say "but mum, you promised we would go here" or "mum, you're no fun, you never take me anywhere" and I worry that this will only get worse the older he gets.

But, now that the appeal is over and done with, I guess that I have one less thing to worry about, so now it's time to concentrate on the parts of my health that I can do something about, my weight.

I am going to take the plunge and sign up to Slimming World tomorrow, so be prepared for lots of Instagram pictures of meals, a lot more meal planning and hopefully some positive posts about my weight loss.
 I'm a great believer that a good mind set will make me feel better in myself even if I'm not actually better in myself!

Thanks to all my readers who are still here following me, I know my posts are few and far between but it means a lot to me that you are still interested in what I have to say.