Meningitis Now
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How to know when you are ready to go to work again after VM?

Those who had successfully done it: How did you knew? Its now about 8 weeks since I got home from hospital. I know Im not ready yet but have had my 'moments of glory' the past two weeks where I feel capable of even working. The thing is that if you don't have a working place where you can go and try whether you're ready or not but have to be sure before you even try, how do you know?

My current work consists of almost 100% public performance where you can't screw up without being embarrassed. So I can't go there and try many times in a row.

Is there someone who can tell me when I'mready or do i have to figure it out myself? I'm already afraid of getting back to work even though there's time left. And due to being afraid, I feel maybe I'm not the objective one to tell when I'm ready or not.

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I had near fatal VM 15 years ago and this question is right up there with 'what is the meaning of life'. The simple answer is that there is no simple answer because each attack of VM can be different. 8 weeks is very early on in recovery depending on how serious the attack was and it also depends on what your job involves doing physically. The moments of glory when you feel like you can do things are sometime deceptive because if you then do too much it's back to resting again. Can you rehearse what you do in private to see how you feel? The biggest struggle I had was the frustration that I felt I could do things but when I then tried I was exhausted after a few minutes. In the end I had to go back to work after 6 months because financially I had no choice and I suspect that's the same for most people. The good news is things do improve but the best advice I can give you is don't try to get back to what was normal before as you may need to change what normal means. Unfortunately VM can mean a slow burn recovery compounded by the medical profession telling people that recovery from meningitis is all the same and you should feel better after 2-3 weeks, if not fully recovered. Despite VM being seen largely as the not so serious version of meningitis, which is a bit like saying losing your foot isn't quite as bad as losing your hand, it can have long term after effects and it's the recovery period which can influence how things are in the future. Resting and more resting drove me nuts, as it happens I'm back to that after another serious illness last wee and I'm still in hospital, but too much too soon is a recipe for a longer recovery. I appreciate this is not much of a definitive answer and that's what you're after but VM is so different for most people it's difficult to give you that. Sometimes you have to try it and see and as Bear Grylls says 'the best part of falling down is that you get the opportunity to get back up again.

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Thanks for answering.:) Already knew the answer for my question, but maybe needed some backup for seeing my doctor again. Im single parent and nowadays feel overhelmed by simple housechores and can't concentrate on anything when the children are keeping noise. Theres no way to go back to my old work yet with this insomnia and memory problems when even cooking feels too hard at times.:( Just missing the old life

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I have written some blog posts on here about my experience of recovering from VM. Just click on my profile and it should take you to them. Hope they help. Ah yes, 42, good old Douglas Adams 😊

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The answer to 'what is the meaning of life' is much more simple, I think. It's 42.:)

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I'm literally in the exact situation as yourself. I've now been out of hospital for 8-9 weeks and thankfully it wasn't near fatal VM as they caught it in time.

I know exactly how you are feeling as I too cannot stand resting too much as I've always been active and wanting to do stuff but recently I too noticed that I cannot do half of what I used to do, I've even stopped driving incase I burn out behind the wheel.

There are days where I feel on top of the world but as soon as I start cleaning the house or doing small jobs, I tend to get extremely tired and fatigued really quickly - which is a shock.

I really want to go back to work but as it's an entertainers role, I am extremely worried that I will perform badly and will lose my job, especially when i would struggle to keep my eyes open if I hit that exhaustion moment.

As Jonad724 has mentioned, you know when you will be ready and do try to get rest and try and push yourself a little further each day, it will get better but in time... time can be frustrating too!

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Nice to see someone else is struggling with the same questions..So few even know about VM and feel I have to explain myself all the time I forget something or feel exhausted.Terrible when you can't rely on your own head...

Know I think I know how my ant felt when she suffered from (whats the disease when you cant remember anything...Memory problems again...XD)

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Dementia, of course. I'mhappy didint have to memorize my aunts name, too.:)

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Hello. I cannot provide an answer to your question, but can make 2 suggrstions. The first is can you talk to your Occupational Health Doctor at your work? The OH Dept have the experts who can help you with a phased return ie going back, when you are ready, very part time and then gradually build back up to full time. Or you should have access to an NHS Occupational Therapist (although though just one word different the two are miles apart!), assuming you are in the UK, who should be able to assist you with building up your strength, both physically and mentally, and hence advise you when they think you are ready for a phased return. Hope this helps. Please be patient and do not expect too much of yourself too quickly.

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Thanks for answering. ❤

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I also had VM 9 days in hospital and picc line in for 30days i returned to work directly after having it removed. As i am a sole parent i had no option. Take as long as you can amd try a few hours or days a week unless you have too take your time. My body regrets not taking it slow.

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Mine, too. Beeing sole parent too sometimes feel like prisoner and miss my job and all the adults there but can't do anything but wait..

Thank you for answering.❤

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