Is anyone considering or already taking time off from work early due to a difficult pregnancy or just to take care of yourself and your growing baby? I'm facing a major dilemma right now and it's overwhelming me... bear with me while I sound very anxious and worked up. The vent will follow...
I'm at 21 weeks and the baby is great, everything about the pregnancy itself has been going as it should be. But the effects of pregnancy on me mentally and physically have been so difficult, I'm at the point where I'm having a nervous breakdown. I pushed through the panic attacks, depression, and difficulty eating in my first trimester, continually being told things would get better in my second. I missed work a handful of days. I tried keeping my chin up. Then my second trimester came and I actually did feel better. I felt great actually for about 4 weeks. Then everything went downhill just as quickly as it had gone up. The panic attacks have come back. The depression has set in. I'm not getting quality sleep. And the worst is that I'm having trouble moving around now due to bad pelvic/pubic pain. My midwife suspects I have pubic symphysis. I've been through a lot of things in my life, but being unable to simply sit or lay without having pubic pain is so overwhelming... If I roll over, the pain shoots up. I can barely bend over a tiny bit. I'm told that if this is pubic symphysis, then it's likely to just keep getting worse as the baby grows and adds more pressure down there. I'm only halfway through the pregnancy! I'm terrified of what lies ahead.
My husband has been wonderful in rubbing my back and giving me a shoulder to cry on since I'm in tears every day. I have support from my midwife, therapist, and chiropractor. My friends have been there to listen to me. But the hardest thing is that I don't have my family supporting me like a family normally would in a situation like this... They live an hour away and they're self-absorbed most of the time. I try talking to my mom sometimes when I'm having a rough time in need of support while my husband is at work (he works nights) and she is so invalidating and can't seem to get off the phone quick enough. She tells me to work things out with my midwife or my therapist, go see a psychiatrist, etc etc. Rather than give me some emotional support in the moment, I'm told to talk to professionals (as if I don't already do that, DUH!). It just makes me feel even more worthless and helpless.
So now I missed work yesterday and took a half day today. I'm considering taking my maternity leave now because I burst into tears and panic every morning before work. Just the thought of trying to sit there at a desk all day (I do accounting) and concentrate when I'm uncomfortable, dizzy, stressed out... ugh I can't take it anymore! I hate that so many people just can't wrap their heads around what I'm going through and so say things to me like, "Just try to make it through the next few months!" and, "Well don't do anything irrational and just quit your job," as if I'm stupid or something. I reduced my schedule from 40 hours/week to 32 hours/week during the past 5 months. If I felt at this point that going down to work part time would salvage my sanity, then I would've done it and gotten a note from my midwife. I suppose I will still ask if I can do any work from home, even though I doubt they'll let me, nor do I feel mentally able at this point. But honestly, do people not understand how difficult it is to concentrate on work when you're this uncomfortable, sleep-deprived, and in pain? Just because I do accounting at a computer doesn't mean that it's the easiest freakin' job on the planet for a pregnancy woman and I should be able to push through everything and focus. If anything, it's a lot harder of a job to focus on than most while having a difficult pregnancy because my brain has to be focused for hours straight while I'm doing difficult calculations and analyses and trying to retrieve info from my nearly non-existent memory now.
Anybody else deal with any of this stuff and/or take short-term disability early? I think my husband and I will have to dip into savings for a while if I'm not working and I'm worried about that. But I have to weigh the lesser of two evils here I guess...... As much as I know I should put my health first way above my job as a priority, my insecurities and the invalidation from some people (ahem *my mother*) make me question myself and my decision-making abilities while I'm in this state.
Anyway, thanks for listening. This gave me a break from my nightly cry session for a little bit.