Stay breezy and upbeat, and be matter of fact as your “new normal” changes and may continue to change for the next few years. People do indeed take their cues from you, and if you can stay calm most of them will.
My disability situation is different than yours, I ended up unable to work/permanently disabled. All I can offer is to somehow wrap your head around the fact that for the next few years, possibly the only permanent thing about life going forward, will be that it may constantly have some change. I chose to accept it as yet another adventure in my life journey, instead of getting into the “this sucks, life is so unfair, why me, what if something worse happens” mindset. Granted, there may be short periods of it, but try not to get sucked too deeply into it. Plus, recognize during the awful times that tears are actually good, they release stress toxins, so as long as you don’t get hysterical and can’t breathe/eyes are swollen shut, your body is leakiNg in an attempt to purge something.
You don’t necessarily need to have a major plan. It’s OK to just deal with stuff at it happens, as you navigate the new changes your body is going through. It OK to try things and have it “not work” and even try the same thing again down the road, to see if perhaps things have changed. It’s OK to have “good weeks” and “bad week” in addition to good and bad days. Hell, I’ve had “bad months” but I had to quit work my life got so disrupted.
I am US based, and my work recommendations may not apply to other countries. Not sure who you are reporting to in all this. I happened to have had a decent manager, who took my requests/dealt with HR a lot for me, simply passing along the forms I needed and adjusting my schedule without a lot of fuss. Depending, you may want to or have to deal with HR yourself, and I hope you have a competent person to work with during this. If you are part of a larger company, your boss doesn’t have the time/interest to be a reliable contact person, I think it’s OK to find a single point person in HR to deal with moving forward. For me, personally, “losing control of my body” was a major, major stressor and I found that anything in my life I *could* control, I wanted to with a vengeance. So dealing with the same person in HR moving forward may be a comfort. And I mentioned this in case you too suddenly have control issues in other parts of your life moving forward, for things that you never did previously.
Focus on *what you want to have happen* and how you can achieve it. Take pleasure in when you *can* reach goals. Redirect your thoughts when possible, when the unfairness of it all comes crushing down. Not “toxic positivity”, just, trying to focus on what you have (glass half full) instead of what you don’t.
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