Right now i have no reason to leave the house. All of my work i can do at home. I don't have any friends in Toronto. I don't have any money to go to the movies or go to a restaurant or anything. I know it's not healthy to spend my whole life in the house. I know it's not healthy to only ever interact with people online (and even that rarely). I know it's not healthy to be depriving myself of all the activities i love to do. Although i don't believe any of these things are the cause of my depression, they certainly aren't helping it. And i actually have the power to change them. I just need to suck it up and go back to full-time work.
There are a million reasons i don't want to go back. I hate computer programming, i've hated it for 10+ years. I hate the deadlines and the pressure. I hate spending all day staring at a screen trying to fix one problem and coming home completely drained. I hate that sometimes you have to deal with the most socially awkward colleagues imaginable. I hate that everyone else in the industry seems to honestly love it. Software development isn't the job where you sit down with your buddies after the shift and talk about how you dream of doing something else. But i am very good at it. And it pays a lot of money. And it remains my sole viable route into America. And at least if i went back i would be forced to get out of bed every morning and go into the office and socialize and do the work and not just wallow in my depression. At least it would be better than this.
So really the only reason i don't want to go back is because it's going to be extremely hard to tell my current boss/client. I have built an entire system from the ground up for her. No one knows how it works but me. I'm the developer who has been contributing to the concept from the start and who has shaped all the future planning. There are still a lot of things i've left incomplete. There are still a lot of projects she wants me to do. I have tremendous feelings of guilt over even thinking about leaving. I have such a sense of loyalty to the company because i really believe in what they're trying to do. But the hours aren't there, the money isn't there, and that combined with the working-from-home is just pushing me into a deeper and deeper hole. I want so much to stay and see this company succeed, but i fear i'll lose my sanity before then.
I talked about this to my therapist a couple months back and she said i needed to stop always worrying about other people and start doing things that are right for me. She said i've paid my dues, i've put in a huge effort working for over a year for well under what i'm worth. She's totally right. So why do i still feel so guilty? I haven't even applied for anything yet! Maybe it's because all this time i've been telling myself that this was the right path for me, that i really valued the working-from-home, that being poor was okay... And now i have to turn around and admit i was wrong, that as awful as working full-time in IT is, it's not as bad as being on the poverty line without any friends or colleagues or place to go besides home. Have i cheated myself out of a year? Did i abandon my responsibilities? Will i ever be happy? I think i have to try, otherwise i'll never know.