I've been back at work since last Thursday, Jan 3rd. It had been quiet. Too quiet. Today there appears to be more people around as they return from their holiday break. Still, things are slowly stirring awake, as though people are coming gradually awake after a long period of inactivity and stupor. Trying to get the momentum started again, the cogs churning with effort.
I've been within my own space, my own world. It's difficult to find words now in conversations. As if my mind had retreated and it is hard to access it again and get it to play the social games that people play. Hi! How are you? How was your holiday? Did you have a good time? I've never been very good at it to begin with anyway.
It becomes Hi? How? .... Are? .... You? Silence wedged in between words, as if forming words required effort. A stroke victim coaxing sounds from a half paralysed tongue. I'm finding it almost too hard to communicate. Or maybe it's always been this way. I don't know. I don't remember anymore. Things just feel different and foreign somehow.
I see my case manager tomorrow, first time since the holidays. V is still weeks away. But at least I'll be going away too. And it's finally beginning to feel real. On Friday I'm off to Christchurch to begin a road trip loop around the southern South Island, driving through Dunedin, Invercargill, Milford Sound, Te Anau, Queenstown, Fox Glacier, Franz Josef, Hokitika, Arthur's Pass and back into Christchurch to fly home on Jan 23rd.
This 12 day holiday will be one of the longer trips away from home for me, and while I know I will really enjoy seeing the landscape of the South Island so well known for its beauty, I know it will be tough to be out of my routine and basically being outside my comfort zone. V had warned me about this and told me my stress levels tend to be higher when I am away from home. I don't deny this at all. I just have to be careful.
I think I'm quite looking forward to this. There are very few things in life better than a road trip!