For someone that has FOMO*, this situation I’m in can feel like a bit of a drag. I’m in a cocoon, waiting to emerge. My leg is sealed in a futuristic brace, which poses a fashion dilemma each morning. Sharing pictures of my dog is now my staple, and although Fred is photogenic, I realise that people can only feign interest for so long. The flat is claustrophobic, the novelty of dragging myself around on sticks is wearing thin. My bike is sitting in the corner, gathering dust.
Returning to work is a daunting prospect. As another week passes, my progress is vastly improving. I can shower and dress on my own now. I can even put a little weight on it. There is an encouraging bump of quadricep forming above my knee again, and the zombie foot isn’t making so many cameo appearances these days. However, I’m still not living normally. I rely on Tom to feed me as I can’t carry the shopping. The idea of catching trains makes my heart pound, which I know sounds ridiculous. But maybe not – I know that the procedure cost the NHS £9,000, and I’ve been hobbling along for the past 5 years with no cartilage in my knee. This recovery has kept me reliably sleep-deprived which makes any problem seem bigger.
I’d kept in touch with the office, but as I became more frustrated with my recovery I felt more guilty that my team were left holding the fort. Creeping anxiety has built up – I’ve fought hard against becoming a hermit, but my trips to the local St. George’s hospital are my only trips out. Some lovely mates have popped round, but I’m hardly the perfect hostess as I can’t carry anything. I’m limited to the flat as going to the postbox is a test of endurance. As you can imagine, I also don’t have a lot to say, especially if those same friends have read my blogs.
Of course, I’d been logging on to tackle the tidal wave of emails, and given myself time to get my head around what I’d missed. I’m a natural workaholic, and I’m not ashamed to say that work is a huge part of my identity. I Googled what to expect when returning to work and was directed to Mumsnet, which didn’t help much. However I needn’t have been so worried. My colleagues welcomed me back, and weren’t harbouring any resentment against me as I’d secretly feared. Besides, things move fast in the world of financial events, and while it felt like a lifetime for me, for the team it felt like 5 minutes since I’d left.
If I’m honest, I don’t feel like myself yet. It’s not just the fuzziness from all the painkillers that’s slowing me down – my confidence has plummeted. Everything is in slow motion and taking longer than expected, and patience is hard to reconcile when all you want to do is walk out of the house and get on with your life. Now is the time to focus on the positives. After all, three weeks ago my legs were completely different sizes, and I could barely lift my foot. Things are on the up, and I can’t wait.
FOMO – Fear of Missing Out
Yet more pictures of Fred: