December 11, 2021

Why I had to lie to get a day off work for my mental health.

Photo by Ivan Samkov on Pexels.

My alarm went off in the morning, i open my eyes to instantly feel a gut wrenching, stomach churning, dread. It’s as if something so strong had washed over me, i couldn’t think of any happy thoughts, i couldn’t smile, i couldn’t get up.

Shit, i can’t go to work, i just can’t physically get up and face going to work, i can’t be there and pretend to smile and do my job, i just can’t face it, i can’t do it.

I love my job, nothing is wrong with my job. Nothing was wrong with this morning, nothing happened the night before either. I just can’t get out of this anxious funk, i need to call in sick at work.

I’m not medically diagnosed with any mental health disorder, but i can’t fathom how the ones who are, can deal with this strong or even stronger feeling, not just for one day, but day after day.

The thought of there being no ability to call your work and say i’m sorry i can’t make it today because i don’t feel happy.

Why do i have to make up some excuse that i have a cold or flu. why can’t i be transparent and tell it like it is and have my excuse to be eligible to stay home from work.

I knew if i tell my manager oh sorry i can’t make it because i have a rush of anxiety taken over me, a sense of dread to face my day, a ball of worry in my stomach and the actual fact i just can’t get up to face going to work and pretending i’m ok.

I need a day off for my mental health then why is my reasoning not classed as a valid reason to be ‘sick’ enough to stay home.

I just knew i needed a day off, for myself, for my head to get out of this mess, to somehow get myself out of this mood i had fallen into. I needed a day off for my mental health. So i lied.

I lied that i was having a cold and flu symptoms to my manager, and had to put on an act over the phone as if my nose was blocked and i threw in a little cough to make it believable.  Why do i have to do this i was saying to myself. Why can’t i just take one day off sick just for me, just because i can’t face my day.

Of course the cold and flu reasoning was fine with my manager and i was told to get well and let them know if i’ll be in tomorrow.

Suddenly a massive wave of relief came over me, that finally the world can leave me alone. Responsibilites and people depending on me right now, can leave me alone.

I lay in bed, under the covers, i just wanted to curl up and close my eyes just for a while. Today is a day for me, to look after me and i won’t feel guilty about it.

I plucked myself up from the bed and i said to myself, the sun is out, it’s a beautiful day, i will take myself to the fields and trees and take a walk in nature. I needed to clear my head, to shift this feeling to a new prespective, something to uplift me, to look around me and be grateful for all that is beautiful and free in life.

I treated myself to a coffee, any coffee, any size, doesn’t matter what it costs, i deserve something that makes me happy, so simple as a coffee. I took it with me on my way to start my walk. Instantly feeling the sun on my face, it felt good i was here, i was alone, i was free and i felt at peace.

I took my time to look around me, to look how beautiful certain trees were, to look at the colour of the sky, to look at birds flying past and taking a moment to breathe and look around me. To be grateful for the simple things that really made me feel at ease and safe.

I found a bench and sat there for an hour, just looking around me, taking slow deep breaths. Everything is alright.

I just needed this today so much, to be alone, to be still, to gather my thoughts and myself, to feel strong and collected.

Why can’t this be acknowledged in all work places, that your mental health is so super important just as your physical health. If you were physically sick or hurt then somehow that seems to have a higher importance and valid reasoning than episodes of low and struggling mental health days.

It should be a valid reason to not be able to gather yourself up to go to work and it should be respected and granted. Why do i have to lie to get a moment to find my inner strength, to gain some clarity and peace and just ultimately be allowed to feel like shit sometimes and that everyone at work is ok with me taking the day off for it.

I have to say, it’s incredible how what i can only call, super heroes out there that feel so depressed, anxious, stressed and are battling with an aray of mental health issues on a daily basis and being able to get the will to make it to work, i absolutley think you’re incredible and i hope workplaces are more educated and englihtened about how important this subject is.

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