Well after reading all the posts about the back to work question. I have to ask myself. what now?
I have been ill since Oct 2009 and havent worked since April 2010. The fatigue is ok, but the other symptoms are still there & come & go. My biggest issue is the brain fog, forgetfulness, cant remember what i was going to say etc... I wonder to myself how will I ever work again, when sometimes the simplest thing becomes something I have to think about. Its so frustrating!! feel like an absolute idiot.
I dont think I am in remission, as I have been told you should be symptom free for a good period of time to be able to call it remission. I had the CMV virus, with heaps of stress & I am also diabetic. This is how I became ill. I almost feel guilty being home & sometimes get quite mad at myself wondeering if I am just being "lazy" or is it "the" illness.
Try going the part time job.. something you can make fit you eg before i got really sick again, i was doing housecleaning for an agency (highly not recommended due to the chemicals!!) but i was able to do book the clients into my week when i wanted. i could take on how many i wanted and put them in times to suit me and change things if i wished.
The more control you have over whatever job you choose to do, the better. Working for oneself is often a very good option. When my CFS/ME was more minor.. i also did gardening for people. Otherwise .. try working for another but start out SLOW.. and make sure you can maintain that level for at least a few weeks before increasing hrs. If i myself went back into work, I'd start off at only 1-2 hrs per week and increase by only 1-2 hrs more per week more each month if i wasnt getting any worst and wasnt struggling with it.
thou i dont believe in Graded exercise therapy, it can be used with activities to work out where you are at with something like work... you'll find you can cope ok to a certain level and its about finding what you are okay with doing comfortably (this is my own version of how GET should be!)
eg You could try something like the following with work
2 hrs per week 1st month = 8 hrs only first month
4hrs per week 2nd month = 16 hrs second month (one morning a week)
6 hrs per week 3rd month
8 hrs per week 4th month (eg two mornings a week or a full day a week) etc
Having a plan/goal can help stop depression... but have this goal for being able to find out what you can comfortably do, rather then a goal of actually being able to work full time again!! (as that may not happen or it could but at later stage you may relapse... having too high goals which one cant reach, may lead to depression).
slow is the key.. it often takes people years to work out where their activity level currently needs to be... without over doing things. But you can work it out by increasing slow. The Aim is not to go overboard and crash (in which you could be permanently worst) and to listen to your body.
Getting mad at yourself and thinking you are lazy, when you are really sick... means you havent as yet accepted that you are really sick. It can be hard when others dont understand you are ill..and then one is then trying to convince oneself one is less ill then one really is.
Its a good sign you havent been sick for long and are already feeling well enough to possibly start working again. It used to be said that one has the most chance of recovery by slowing down at the beginning of this illness and resting... pushing yourself when one hasnt had CFS/ME for long, usually ends up in disaster. So it is important you still dont over do things.
Im glad you have realised you ARE NOT in remission while still getting symptoms... you are still sick and this illness dont ever forget is an up and down one.. you could be doing well for a few mths, then not be doing as well for a few mths etc .. so there needs to be some room for those downs and not working at a level you are already at your limit with
(im speaking from the point of one who did work ones way back to having a full life again and got into full remission for several years.. my suggestion is the kind of thing i did.. you will know when you are well again, as you kind of forget you were ever sick).