So I have been struggling with the fact that I go back in less than two weeks to work. I don’t want this time to end. I am afraid of missing something, and knowing that this is my last baby makes it even harder.
Ok, I didn’t ask for more time from my OB. I was doing fine at my six week check up. I didn’t try to whip up any tears or pretend like I needed it. I couldn’t even do it if I tried – I think a side effect (not listed) on Lexapro is inability to lie, sort of like Jim Carrey in Liar, Liar. In any case, two weeks ago, I went into knowing I would be going back March 13. Done. As much as I hated the thought of it, I couldn’t get around it. Medically, there was nothing wrong. Mentally, who the fuck knows.
Enter my psychiatrist appointment today. Mind you, I should have had it three days before my OB checkup, but due to a sort-of snowstorm and cancelled schools in the area, my appointment had to be rescheduled. I am now 8.5 days away from going back to work, and I go to see my psychiatrist to check in on how my meds are doing and how I am fairing and adjusting to life with three. As we get to talking, she asks me about when I go back. So I tell her how I am headed back on March 13, that my OB didn’t guarantee me more time off. She is puzzled, so I explain how my job works – I get up to 8 weeks because of my union bargaining, but my OB only guarantees 6 weeks unless medically necessary. I have extra time I can take, but it has to be ok’d by a doc. “Well, I can write you a note if that’s what you need,” she responds. My heads swivels around. WHAT? It was THAT easy? My OB didn’t even ask, but this woman is ready to hand me what I want on a silver platter?? “Really?” I manage to squeak out. She goes on to tell me that she wouldn’t mind doing so whatsoever, and that just say the word, and I can have whatever extra time I need. I begin rationalizing (out loud) how the last time, it was easier to get back into a routine of things, how I figured I was already going back on the 13th, so that’s how it would be. “Just call me if you need anything. More meds, a note, whatever,” she leaves me with. Goddammit.
I spend the rest of the day cuddling my baby, ruminating, over-analyzing. Do I or don’t I? Throwing a wrench into everything, before I left for my appointment, I had literally just followed up with my boss to make sure that HR got the memo about when I return, as well as making sure I have a transition time with my replacement. And then comes the paperwork I had my OB fill out for me so far in advance – which they probably put all of the information about only getting 6 weeks unless otherwise necessary. If my psychiatrist sends something new, wouldn’t that look weird? Would it look like I was trying to get out of something? On top of all of that, I am trying to advance in my job, and what would it look like if my psychiatrist said I needed more time, and then my work delved into it and had to hear about my mental state? I shouldn’t have to think about that, but WHAT IF? How would that affect things for me getting the new position? God, I hate asking myself all of these questions. I know other people who have just said they would do it in a heartbeat without thinking twice, and then worrying about it later on. But me, no, I have to think and balance and bug the shit out of my husband with the same questions over and over.
Why is it so hard? What does it have to be such an ordeal? My husband just seems to be able to shut it off with everything, while I can’t stop thinking about it. Why does it matter if I am mentally unstable, and can’t head back to work so I need more time? Isn’t that what postpartum and the “fourth” trimester is all about – getting back into a less hormonal world but struggling in the process so your brain is all over the place, including a highly emotional state? I probably won’t sleep for the next two weeks, so if anyone has any words of wisdom for me, I’d love to hear them and seek solace in them.