After 3 years of suffering painful sex, which then developed into exhaustion, regular painful bloating, IBS type symptoms, painful periods and a loss of concentration and slurring of words, I went to the doctor and after a few months of appointments, tests and treatments for IBS, I was referred to a gynaecologist. He suspects i have endometriosis and I have a date for a laparoscopy at the end of August. So far, so good.
However, i had a really bad bout of stomach cramps which put me off work for a week in June. I went back the following week because it was coming up to year end and i had a lot of work to get through. Everyone suggested i should go home because i was in such a bad way-visibly in pain, exhausted and pale. I gave in and asked to go home first thing Thursday morning. I had a few more doctors appointments, had more blood and urine samples taken just in case and everything came back clear. However, I was an emotional wreck when I went into the doctor one day begging him to get me back to work because I had so much to do and was getting so far behind. He immediately signed me off for 4 weeks and told me i should rest, stop worrying about work and prioritise my health.
It was such a relief knowing that someone said i didn't need to go into work.
While I've been off, I've had a rough four weeks-intermittent but significant pain, crying for no reason, IBS symptoms galore, sleeping 12 hours at night and napping during the day. Despite all of this, I feel better for it because I haven't had work and a team of 10 people including 2 new recruits to consider too.
My four week line is up on Wednesday and I'm now worried about my return to work. For months now, i know i haven't been performing at my best because I've been so run down and poorly and but I'm worried that when I go back to work the same workload and pressures will be there and I'll be expected to carry on as normal in the 7 weeks between now and my lap date. I just don't feel that I will be able to achieve what I'm normally capable of and I don't want to let people down or let it affect my mental and physical health again. I also worry that I may have to go off again intermittently and worry how this will look to my employer. Equally I know I can't stay off work for the next 7 weeks!
I have an appointment with Occupational Health tomorrow. I don't really know what to do or how to approach it. I don't want them to think I'm 100% fit for work if my performance will be affected, but also don't want them to think I'm a chancer or unreliable. I really just wish my lap date would be pulled forward so i can get back to normal sooner but i know that's highly unlikely.
I guess I'm just wondering if anyone else has had the same concerns and any advice on how to deal with it. My employer is one of the better ones but I'm worried this will impact my long term career progression and how they view me.
What should i do for the best?