Back in the Game.

So a month ago I stepped away from being Michelle the cancer warrior( sufferer) and back into the world of work. I had been signed off sick for 12 months and I left my role as a teacher, Sendco and Vice Principal , working for a community I adored and a school that had been my life for 21 years. My time off ill, taught me that I wasn’t cared for, or valued by my employer as much as I thought I was and a series of blunders and noncommunications left me no choice but to step away.

You believe when you are in a job for so long that you are not capable of anything esle and anyway who would want you. My confidence took a huge knock. The more time I spent at home with only the cat and daytime TV the more you loose your self worth. Your self belief, slips until you are wearing it as a choker.

I was lucky that a conversation with the Charity manager at the Haven Breast Cancer Charity introduced me to a lovely lady who owned the Charisma Charity Recruitment agency in Winchester. I had an appointment with this lady and she boosted my self confidence and made me believe I had skills and knowledge to offer. She provided me with some great advice on cv’s and advice on where to apply.

So in November after giving in my notice in and a huge weight being lifted of my shoulders. I began the task of creating a cv and applying for jobs. Luckily my good friend Jane was on hand to advise on applications, cv’s etc. So I started to send off applications and I began to receive emails saying I had been shortlisted. Oh the joy and excitement this created. A flurry of interviews came – 3 in one week. Poor Jane and Julie completed reference request after request.

When I attended the interview for my current job as an SEN Caseworker I immediately felt at home and comfortable. The world of SEN was a passion of mine. Something I knew about. The joy of finding out an organisation wanted to employ you. Then the long 6 week wait for my dbs to come through.I started to think I had committed cromes I knew nothing about.

As the day drew nearer to start I grew anxious what if I couldn’t do it? What if I couldn’t remember things? What if I didn’t have the stamina?

Then the preparation where to park,value for money, the route, timings, lunch, what would I need, what would I wear?

So a month on routines are established, I have worn a route in the motorway, park in the same spot,sit in the same seat on the bus and hot desk. I am part of a great team who have been so welcoming and accomdating. 2 great line managers and a very patient buddy who has taught me a wealth of things. In 20 days I have learnt so much procedures, processes, policies etc.

I can remember things, I can be of use again. I am enjoying being challenged every day and helping where I can. Boy the tiredness though. I am sleeping better than I have for 20 months. Maybe I should of started slow and built my time up, but so like me to throw myself in.

I rarely think about cancer recurring again at work as there is no time . So now I will concentrate on enjoying a job where I can make a difference to children and young people and when I am not at work I will do things for me and my family. It is time now for me to move on and get back in the game. I won’t forget my journey and the lessons I have learnt will not be forgotten ever.

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