So the past couple of weeks have been down ones. The reasons are plentiful and yet relatively insignificant if I weren't already, you know, depressed.
This whole depression has had one hell of an effect on my career. Honestly, there are days when I feel lucky to still have a job. I have lost almost all of my confidence at work. I second guess myself pretty much all of the time and struggle to make decisions. So basically, I am just the type of employee all businesses are looking for . . . or not.
Today I was working on my 2011 self-evaluation. Wow, when one is already struggling with a pretty much total lack of self-confidence at work it is really hard to sit down and revisit one of the worst years in my career.
I sat there staring at my computer screen trying desperately to come up something positive to write . . . to come up with one strength that I showed over this past year. You know what I came up with . . . the ability to complete the necessary tasks under challenging circumstances. I am not really certain that it is actually a positive when I was the source of these challenging circumstances.
Luckily this self-evaluation coincided with a session with my therapist. Oh yes, you did in fact read that correctly . . . I am about to write something positive about my therapist.
By the time I got to her office I had spent a good chunk of the morning slipping lower and lower, on the verge of tears and pretty much hating myself. I sat down in her office and she asked me how things were and informed her that things could be better.
And then the tears started. The words came tumbling out. My fears that my depression has done serious damage to my career. My struggles to try and figure out how to evaluate my worst year. My intense sadness at how much time I have lost to this effing depression.
You know what she said . . . she said that it wasn't the worst year of my career . . . it was the year that helped me to determine that I needed help and I was strong enough to seek it out. As silly as this may sound, just hearing her say she was proud of how hard I have been working these past few months made me feel good.
I have been working hard. I have been trying to reframe my thinking and find ways of recognising and dealing with my triggers so that I don't spiral back downwards. I admitted that I desperately needed help and I got medication. I accepted responsibility for actions that were not positive, that were a symptom of my depression, and I tried to learn from them.
So today I walked out of my therapists office determined to borrow her confidence in me to complete my evaluation . . . and I did. Hopefully some day, in the very near future, I will have some confidence of my very own . . . that will certainly be a step towards being able to say that I "Survived PPD".