After thirty minutes of light gardening, yesterday morning (yes, a bit too much, but the window of dry weather, and the state of the garden, made being totally sensible impossible,) I was in dozing rest mode when I got a phone call which wrecked the rest of my day and has probably done for the rest of my week as far as any productive activity goes. It doesn't take a lot when your store of spare energy and concentration is a well-scraped barrel at the best of times.
(I have bright clean wood showing, approaching gouges in the staves).
Last June an ATOS medical passed me 100% fit for work, with 0 points on questionnaire and medical.
In November 2011, my tribunal appeal was granted, my ESA benefit was restored and I was placed in the support group.
In Jan 2012, a new medical questionnaire arrived in post (I really felt "got at" with that one. Shades of Irish EU democracy: we'll keep asking you until you give the right answer.)
Now I'm being moved back to the Work Related Activity Group, apparently, on the basis of my questionnaire answers (how they managed to infer that as likely to be correct on the strength of my replies, I've no idea. My health has been worsening, not improving.)
Oh well, more hoop-jumping seems required, and since the odds of a bureaucracy waking up to the absurdities of its own bureaucracy are pretty poor, I must summon up the wherewithal to conform and comply.
I'm hitting "Catch-22"-like catches again. I could better make a presentational job of how ill am, how limited in ability, if I weren't so ill and limited in ability.
I can do it, of course. I just have to throw almost all other activities overboard, and borrow from the future energy ration, storing up days of feeling terrible once I've cleared this hurdle.
Or if I do a good job, will the opposite catch apply and it be taken as evidence that I could quite clearly do an office job?
(If you don't turn up for a medical the default assumption is that you are not taking it seriously, not that you are too ill to attend...)
The phone call itself, in its managing and in absorbing and processing information wiped out any ability to do anything useful for the rest of the day, I'm not good today.
No reserves, and reserves are called for.
Never mind. There appears to be no better'ole, so soldiering on it is.
A key line from "The Battle of Maldon".
"Will shall be the sterner, heart the bolder,
spirit the greater as our strength lessens." (Tolkien's translation).
That or curl up under the duvet and eat chocolate.