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Brknhrt62, November 2,  2017  7:42pm EST

Returning to work after FMLA

I returned to work on Monday and immediately went back into AFib. I do not feel safe at work and I believe this threat is triggering flight or flight. Anyone have any experience with this?
6 Replies
    ANXIETY SUE, November 3,  2017  5:54am EST
    I tried going bck to work = but everything was too much! I know I had a high responsibility position but just couldn't hang on any longer (plus my commute was 3hrs a day which put me in a 12hr daily work day. HOWEVER - try and extend FMLA - if you have a union or HR talk with them - BUT do not retire unless you ready! I really feel I was forced into retirement and having nothing to do is more stressful then when I was putting in a 12hr day. Depression is the biggest problem - if you read my first posts this all started with chemo/radiation treatmnets for carcinoma of the vulva, i had never been sick before nd now feel like I have lost contro; of everything! Money, insurance etc are getting to be bigger problems then I can handle, my doctor wouldlike me to see a psychiatrist since I;ve had some very scary thoughts - I just feel like I lost me - can't find a road back - and is it all worth it? I'm 72 very alert and energetic but doors just seem to be clsing in on me - but please don't worry i get up everyday with a positive attitude that today I will succeed. My cancer is in remission I do have a loy of doctor appointments but nothing I couldn't handle if I find a job - just hang in there till you're sure what you want to do Don't make ant rash decisions!!
  • Mellanie at
    Mellanie at, November 3,  2017  7:02am EST
    A lot of work is being done in yoga and mindfullness to reduce the stress of living with afib. In fact, there is a Mindfullness in Afib study going on currently, led by Dr. Atul Verma in Canada. And Dr. Lakkireddy at the University of Kansas has provven that yoga reduces afib burden (number and intensity of afib episodes). You may wish to investigate any mindfullness or yoga programs in your area. Even Silver Sneakers has a positive effect by helping to quiet the mind.I personally am a strong believer in "going into the silence". To do so, you sit quietly in silence with your eyes closed and shut all thoughts out of your brain. I visualize closing the doors of my mind so that no thoughts come in or go out while I am in the silence. It can take 5-10 minutes sometimes to turn off all thoughts and let the mind go blank, but sit there in the silence for 20-30 minutes. When you open your eyes, you should be refreshed and your mind quiet. I find that it is a good problem-solving technique because when I come out of the silence, my subconcious mind will usually hand me the solution to the problem I was wrestling with before going into the silence. While I cannot credit being afib-free for 12 years to that solely, it is one of the things that helps me be afib-free.If you try it, please let us know your results. Mellanie
  • Mellanie at
    Mellanie at, November 3,  2017  7:19am EST
    If you have a smartphone, you may wish to try out the Afib Companion app, which is a 90-day afib educational and exercise program with a mindfullness component. Mellanie
  • Jeanamo
    Jeanamo, November 3,  2017  1:27pm EST
    Brknhrt and Anxiety Sue.....I would like to second Mellanie's suggestion about Mindful Meditation for reducing anxiety.  It works well for so many people.  There are many resources...books,etc...which can serve as guidelines for learning to use mindfulness.  I hope both of you will find this to be helpful for you in finding peace and calmness in your life.  Also seeing a mental health professional can often be benficial when we find that life's path is feeling too "rough".  You have endured a lot with your physical problems and it is only natural that you may be discouraged and overwhelmed at times.  Please be assured that members of this community do care and want you to keep us informed as to how both of you are doing..Best wishes...Jean.(My A-Fib Experience Community Leader)
  • lmaj
    lmaj, November 4,  2017  2:25am EST
    I think not enough attention is paid in the medical community to the side effects of long term health issues, i.e. anxiety and depression. I was diagnosed with Afib August 2016 and during the "what the hell is happening period"---the diagnoses, the medication, attemped cardioversion(s) ablation recuperating, etc. . . .there was some very very dark times.  I'm divorced after 32 years of marriage and while my children are supportive (as are a few very close friends)---they are not my partner, so on top of the condition, I was/am managing everything really alone. Then on top of that---there is just the aging process and recognizing this stage of life.  I'm 66 and still feel relatively "young"--things just start to happen.    I am still working and at this point, have decided not to retire until I'm just really ready---there are times when my job, while stressful, has helped to keep me sane---literally.   I golfed on my summer and fall league this year---those weekly outings really helped pull me out of a funk---not just being outside but the socialality of it.  I have picked up my walking and exercising again and I can actually tell the difference in just my perspective---after I walk/exercise, I feel like I've accomplished something for myself and I notice it does have a positive affect on my mental well-being. I tried yoga---it actually made me more anxious--friends have suggested it wasn't the right class and mentioned Tai Chi---which I might try to find a class for that.Since I have generalized anxiety anyway (a hold over from the divorce), I do have a perscription for Xanex---which I take on occasion when the anxiety just gets a bit overwhelming (I've had another health issue crop up that I am currently dealing with as well),   I don't over do---a scripit for 40 pills lasts me 4-5 months or longer but it does get me over the hump sometimes.Anyway, I just wanted  to relay my experience so that you all know that I think anxiety and depression are not unusual with afib and/or other health issues---we do have to address it and not sweep it under the rug as it can get sometimes feel just overwhelming---Please talk to a counselor or see if there is a support group in the hospital---I tried finding a support group for afib, but my community is not large enough so thank goodness for this on-line forum---it's been a godsend.  However, most communities do have cancer support groups---so Sue, I hope you connect with one in your area---I would think that it would be immensly helpful even though you are in remission . .it's a good way to connect and find and offer support to others in the same situation.Wishing you all the best and like Roy says "may we all be in NSR".Best, linda
  • Morwenna
    Morwenna, November 4,  2017  2:30am EST
    I took an eight week stress reduction mindfulness course by Jon Kabat - Zinn ,and it was very helpful in reducing anxiety . It included meditation, walking meditation, relaxation , tools to be able to respond to illness, pain, and  stressful situations. As well as yoga and breath work, there was information on healthy eating, from a Buddhist perspective. Many hospitals have these courses, and Jon Kabat-Zinn has great meditations on YouTube.
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