Former Australian prime minister Julia Gillard, who ousted PM Kevin Rudd in internal Labour Party infighting, only to be ousted by Rudd in turn, writes in The Guardian:
Losing power is felt physically, emotionally, in waves of sensation, in moments of acute distress.
I know now that there are the odd moments of relief as the stress ekes away and the hard weight that felt like it was sitting uncomfortably between your shoulder blades slips off. It actually takes you some time to work out what your neck and shoulders are supposed to feel like.
I know too that you can feel you are fine but then suddenly someone’s words of comfort, or finding a memento at the back of the cupboard as you pack up, or even cracking jokes about old times, can bring forth a pain that hits you like a fist, pain so strong you feel it in your guts, your nerve endings.