381. WHEN YOUR LIFE CHANGES

7:59:00 AM

http://www.theafterworkblog.com

It has been two months and a halve since I stopped working due to health issues. As shared in the first dairies on the blog, the doctor was thinking about a burnout, so did I. Last year, 2016, was not an easy or pleasant period in my life, neither was 2015. Probably the mix of circumstances made my body and soul slowly crash down and it was time to accept that I needed to take a break from daily life, from work and to clear my mind. Of course to get better as well. My body needed rest cause the last months I was literally living on my last strengths and energy and I was sick all the time of being so weak. 

The last weeks before stopping at work I realized that I wasn't the same person as I was a few years ago. People called me sunshine, always happy, overactive (even at 6 o'clock in the morning) and staying up late during nights out or festivals wasn't any problem. But not only I saw the change, so were my parents, colleagues and friends. It was more and more often that I reacted to normal life issues in a very negative or sensitive way. People were getting on my nerves more often, without any reason, and at the end I couldn't stand anything anymore. Even my self esteem got a huge 'crash' and staying up late was a challenge for me. To give you an example: it has been a year since I went to a club and if I go to bed around midnight I need to sleep the next day almost all day to recuperate.

Just to be completely honest, 2015 was the worst year as three of my four grandparents died within 6months. First my Belgian grandfather, on the second of January. Than my Spanish grandfather, the 15th of February, and my Belgian grandmother on the 9th of July. But now I realize that I never took the time to accept their death and to take the time for grieving. It was so busy at work. And that year I was still working for the Belux as commercial responsable and in 2016 I decided to go back in store close by home as I thought it would help to feel better by being home early, seeing my friends more often and to work on the blog after coming home. But unfortunately I'm in even more pain than before so it wasn't a solution at all to change the job of my dreams. As a Belux responsable I was every day in another store, preparing visits from Spain, helping and training the people in store as much as I could (and I loved doing that), supporting and organizing national and international store openings or workshops, and I remember not leaving one tear those weeks. Only when I had to tell my closest colleagues. It was like I got lost in work and found a sort of denial by focusing on the job. Later on the worst I could do. Even though that can't be changed, my decisions now can. And that's just one part of the mix I was talking about. 

The other one might be more difficult for some to understand, but it's a part of the journey I've been through and in some way I don't think I'm the only one that has been through these kind of relationships. Yes I'm talking about love. In January 2013 I went with a colleague to a birthday party of one of her friends. I organized - kind of - the cake for that small party and she wanted to invite me as a sweet 'thank you' for organizing that. But I didn't know that evening would have an impact on the following years, even until today. The 30th of March 2017. 

That evening I met someone simple, kind and he had a smile that made you melt. As I was so busy with work, again, I wasn't focused on meeting someone for a relationship. At the same time I was about 20-21 and still figuring out my life. Oh wait, I still am. A couple of weeks later we kept seeing each other and we started a relationship. Back than I was feeling so happy, till some time later. He kept asking about the past, talking about people I've met before him and other unnecessary things. Cause in my opinion you need to look into the future, not in the past. And yes I was a young girl, did see and met guys (like the world isn't only habited by women), we all did, but it caused our first huge fight. The reason: I forgot to tell something about my past. Since than he said quite often that I had a bad memory, that I was hiding things on purpose and at some points I actually questioned myself because of his words. But that was just a part of it...

As a blogger, at that time super girly with skirts, dresses, lace, flower prints and everything girly you can imagine (I bet some of you remember me like that). But some times, like do you remember the famous skorts Zara created, he mentioned that my clothes we're too revealing, too short or not appropriate to wear when I was with him. Unknown on the impact it would have later on, I started also to think about my appearance. Do I look good in this? Isn't it too short or "wrong" to wear. Am I not too fat or lazy. Cause you all know the freaking donut lover I am and when possible I can ate a cupcake a day as well. And I was back than already starting to be tired without knowing why and I had to hear a lot of times how lazy I was and that I slept too much. I had to do sports to train my muscles and to get more energy. He has always been sportive with a good shaped body and eating quite healthy. But the comments about my sweet cravings came after a couple of months as well. "Don't eat this or that", do not drink too much coffee or sodas and again without realizing it, I changed another part of me. He always said it was for my own health and wellbeing, but I guess he wanted to change me into someone perfect created by his own imagination. Even though he should've accepted me as I am by being myself. He called me 'Picture Perfect' but apparently I was not that perfect. We broke up six months later, kept seeing each other for another year and than it stopped. Every time I came back home I realized what I changed of myself and the time I wasted enjoying life. I didn't want the struggle anymore and turned that page of negativity. Even though I remember texting him to apologize for what I did wrong. But seriously, what did I do wrong? I was just being myself and I apologized for that? Oh Lord. Of course, because of all the changes I made in my personality I was lost. Lost by not being the person I should be. Having boundaries without being a prisoner, or I did become a prisoner of my own changes. Even until now, 4years later, I still realize that by every skirt of dress I buy, I'm thinking about the length of it. Showing off my bare legs is a whole accomplishment I only do it in high temperatures or for blog pictures. Sounds ridiculous right? But imagine yourself being in that struggle. Also still today I'm not that confident as certain people think. It's a wall, created by the battle that I didn't win yet. Cause some days the first thing that I do in the morning is looking at myself questioning if my belly isn't too fat and when I see sweets I doubt sometimes to eat it, while I should enjoy the sugar kick. I don't blame him though, but I do blame myself for believing it and changing myself even without realizing the effects afterwards as I was too young to understand. And be honest, Social Media isn't helping us either. So many 'perfect' bodies are shown, creating the 'ideal' imagine for people to be. And we are hold back to be ourselves more and more.

By being home now, I started to think about everything that happened the last few years that could've lead to the feeling and pain in my body that I have now and the conclusion is that the mix of my grandparents, the 'getting lost in the job' - part and forgetting to enjoy moments, being happy and loving life, caused the mental problems. But the 24/7 pain in my body isn't resolved yet. They're testing on Multiple Sclerosis as I have a lot of neurologic problems (migraine with partly blindness, shaking hands, losing strength, etc) and next to that they're also testing on Fibromyalgia and Spasmophilia. Both partly caused by stress and too much physical strain. My muscles are constantly contracting and I can't stand or walk for 10minutes without having huge pain in my back or shoulders. I have migraines every day and can sleep every 2/3hours after each effort. The fatigue and pain are killing me. Right now also driving the car might be too dangerous as I stare for a minute while trying to focus on what's going on on the road (at home it's not such a big issue), see double at some moments or feel dizzy without any reasons. They need to find a diagnose for me to start a new chapter in my life. Probably I will need to accept that I have a disease that could have been avoided at some time. But by thinking about everything that I already could've changed by now, I wouldn't even be the person I am today. So I'm thankful for the life lessons I'm going through these months and they will even make me stronger. 

If you read the symptoms about those diseases, I can give everything a place. From the pain in my chest, to the huge fatigue, constant muscles pain, the problems with my eyes,... The coming weeks will be spend in hospital to find diagnoses. There will be a MRI taken from my neck to see how my nerves and muscles are reacting when in movement, an EMG has been taken in the meantime. A magnesium load and BERA test, Cryptotetanie test and many other appointments are on the planning. I'm also still going every other day to the physiotherapist who's deblocking my muscles by acupuncture. 

My focus right now is to give the events a place in my heart and mind to find peace and rest. To enjoy the better days when I have with less pain and to do what makes me happy and to not only focus on the negative. I will become even more stronger by this and it will change me forever in a positive way. A huge thanks to my parents, best friends and colleagues for staying by my side during these months.

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2 comments

  1. Ik wens je veel sterkte, en vooral een snelle diagnose zodat je eindelijk weet wat je eraan kan doen. Ik hoop dat de uitslag meevalt en dat je door middel van medicatie of eventueel therapie weer snel een gezonde Cindy bent. Dikke knuffel!

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  2. Wat heftig allemaal. Ik herken sommige dingen wel, zoals de body struggles. Ik heb zelf een paar jaar geleden ook echt afgezien, maar gelukkig komt altijd alles goed. Daar moet je echt in geloven! Ik denk aan je!

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