I let myself down yesterday.

I woke up. Got dressed. Had a yoghurt. Then I got back into bed and pretended the world didn’t exist. I took, what I believe is called, a ‘mental health day’. I tried to call placement, they didn’t answer so I just left it because… well, I don’t know but I did. Didn’t even try to contact university. I spoke to my mum though, which was good – she’s torn a muscle in her calf and is off work for two weeks so she was just there and had a proud mother moment when she saw my team on television.

So instead of being a functioning human I just chilled. Woke up properly around 1100. Had some lunch. Watched some television because why not. Played on the Xbox. Properly chilled. I should have done some jobs but I didn’t. Should have done some shopping, ditto. I just did what I felt like. Around 1600 I made my mind up to go to the training exercise and that was the turning point really.

I got my kit sorted. Made sure I had adequate food. Changed. Checked the weather so I was prepared. Made sure I could just walk in afterwards and sleep. Then I went.

Apparently all I needed to do was scramble up and down a few cliffs in a line search to feel better.

I. Felt. Alive. Like I haven’t in a while. It was brilliant. Two casualties, first fairly easy to find, the second was our dummy, Bob, who was a fatality and took 40 minutes of crawling up and down a very steep embankment, fighting trees, mud and 7ft ferns to find. We were all attacked by midges. We were all hot and sweating. But we kept going. We were talking, joking, checking in on each other, and for the first time with this new team I felt completely comfortable… just like I did with York. I felt as if I belonged and I was truly back to doing something I loved.

and boy, did I sleep well after that.

Then this morning. I dragged myself up, felt the residue of yesterday’s cloud but acknowledged that I could not let myself slip into that, I could not let myself find it easy to stay at home. I had my yoghurt, got dressed, and walked out of the door. I have my shopping list. My washing is ready to be done when I get in.

I was expecting a bit of a telling off when I got in by the Ward Sister but… well to be honest I was thinking of all of the stories; asthma, heart playing up, even considered saying I had had to look after my mum. But in the end I did the thing that I think I will be most proud of this week.

I sat down and told my mentor that I wasn’t in yesterday because I couldn’t face the world.

and it was fine. She just asked if I had the right support, if the university were aware, and if I was completely happy to be back today. Which I was after that.

I… I’m feeling proud of myself for doing that, for not taking the easy option. Today I could have let the cloud keep me at home, or let the cloud hide the truth but I didn’t, I brushed it away.

It’s paying off. I’ve done a 4-layer compression bandage today, read a book on diabetic foot ulcers, passed a surprise quiz, and am now doing all of the reading on an injection I will be giving in 48 minutes. I’ve only thrown one bandage on the floor and am drinking all of the tea. After this reading I’ll be catching up on my notes.

Still feeling the cloud, but still pushing it away.


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