Today I got recognition at work, someone who has put an extra effort to deliver an important project. And I am proud, of course I am, but I also can’t help but feel like a cheat. Why you might wonder?
A few months ago, I was going through a breakup with my partner, trying to get myself grounded. After 6 years, I was living alone again. At the same time, I was watching covid-19 cases spiking and the country preparing itself for another lockdown. I started a new project at work. Two weeks into the new project, my ex told me he was seeing someone new.
The night he told me that I thought I would die. I read somewhere that people take ibuprofen for emotional pain, cause in so many ways it is identical to physical pain. I tried, but it didn’t work. The next day, I took 2 days off from work, cause I couldn’t breathe, much less think. In the following weeks, I felt like I was drifting through my life. Nothing made sense. Some days I couldn’t even put the effort to brush my teeth.
But there was a part of me, a part that wanted to be an engineer before even knowing what being an engineer meant, that tingled. That part couldn’t be silenced. There’s a problem that needed to be solved. And I can be the one solving it. So I sat and started putting in the hours. My focus was low. I spent 3 days just reading, trying to understand what this was about. Then it started to make sense. So I took every bit that was left in me and put it in that project. I started working long hours.
I had to put on a serious face while my colleagues were telling me they’re worried I might burn out. You can’t burn ashes, I wanted to tell them, but instead, I thanked them for their concerns. Following the long hours I put into the work, I was tired. So I started sleeping again. Since my sleep pattern is returning, I might as well make myself a decent meal. Since I’m already sleeping and eating properly, I might throw in a workout in there. Slowly, I was regaining control of my life.
Four months later, I sleep like a log. I’m in great shape physically, heading strong for that summer. My parents got vaccinated, so one thing less to worry about. I reconnected with old friends. I started making plans for the future. I got recognition for the work I put in. But I didn’t deliver the project. The project delivered me.
PS. My colleagues are the most amazing people I have ever worked and none of this would have possible without them. Thank you for helping me through with this.