Have been referred to a rheumatologist for high rheumatoid factor, sluggish thyroid, inflammatory markers and anaemia. I do not know what is wrong, but googled it. Still to find out. Apparently teachers are at high risk of auto immune disease because we are exposed to countless viruses and exist in a state of stress. I think that this, plus life’s general stresses and strains ( including bereavement) create a crucible for ill health. I went back to work, briefly, for a maternity cover ( retired) and suddenly was aching, exhausted. All the assessments, screenings, reports, observations just about did for me ... including the odd difficult pupil. Incidentally, behavioural issues often to do with ageist comments ... but that is another thread. Eating went awry, stopped going to the gym ... too much sugar ... Having to ‘perform’ on a daily basis in front of an expectant class, teaching prescribed lessons with such a rigid structure that there is no room for breathing space ... how/ why do we do it? Is it making us sick, but in a really insidious way ... so that retirement ushers in chronic ill health. Coming to think of it, I took early retirement because I was beginning to feel symptoms of chronic exhaustion. I am stunned by how hard teachers work. I really think that it has become a corrosive profession. When I returned to the classroom several months ago, it is as though even more is expected of teachers ... I saw how hard everyone worked! Also, this is the case in English, no text books. The teacher is meant to ‘craft’ every lesson!