****** Tomorrow I’m going to be making a post with canning and dehydrating information and tips. I just need to get a little more information for it. I know how to can and dehydrate, but I want to make sure I have 100% correct information before I post anything.
So for today, I’m going to be talking about anxiety. Since I have GAD (General Anxiety Disorder) with panic attacks, I know about anxiety or have a pretty good grasp of it. At least in my personal experience.
First, let’s go over the differences in the two.
An anxiety attack, people may feel fearful, apprehensive, may feel their heart racing or feel short of breath, but it’s very short lived, and when the stressor goes away, so does the anxiety attack. Panic attack on the other hand doesn’t come in reaction to a stressor. It’s unprovoked and unpredictable.-source
Not all anxiety/panic attacks look the same, they are different for each person and may even be different each time you have one.
Don’t get my wrong, panic attacks and anxiety attacks suck! But, at least with an anxiety attack most of the time you know why you’re having one. It doesn’t make it any easier but, at least you know what’s causing it.
Panic attacks they are sneaky little bastards that come out of nowhere for no reason at all. You’re sitting there one minute perfectly happy and then PANIC ATTACK! Sometimes they’re small enough that no one but you even knows anything is going on. These are more manageable, for the most part, you can ignore them and pretend that everything is fine.
Other times it’s all you can do to keep it together. You know while you’re having one that you aren’t being rational, you know that those fears are not justified and you wish you could just snap out it. You wish you could just think about something else, anything else. At that moment in the full swing of a panic attack, all the wishing and willing yourself to make it stop does nothing.
For me, one of my bigger stressors for a panic attack is storms, in particular, severe storms and tornadoes. I know a lot of people have a fear of storms. With just an average fear it’s something you might think about and be concerned for, but for me, it’s like that x1000000. It becomes all I can think about. I obsess over. I have to know what’s going on all the time. It doesn’t matter if it 100 miles from where I am if there is even a change that it’s moving this way that’s all I need to know for the fear to set it. Most people when they are scared of something just think about something else, they do something to occupy them until they are calm again. NOT ME! I know this is completely irrational, but in my mind, if I am not watching the weather channel and monitoring the storm every step of the way and something happens to me or my family then it is my fault for not protecting them and keeping them away from the danger. Even though if there actually were a tornado I wouldn’t be able to stop it. It would be coming no matter what I did. I go from watching the weather to checking outside over and over until it’s over and I can relax. At that point, I’m completely exhausted.
What’s really going on outside vs what my anxiety is telling me is going on outside. If I don’t get up at least 15 times to go check that image of the tornado in my mind only grows and gets closer.
I have several other things that bring on anxiety attacks, a few of them are but not limited to…talking to someone I don’t know, confrontation, thinking someone is mad at me, thinking about something stupid that I might have said or done 10 years ago.
Late at night a random embarrassing (probably only embarrassing to me) thing I did years ago and I’m up for two hours thinking about. Wondering if anyone else remembers it, wondering if that’s all they remember about me. I go over conversations I’ve had over and over in my head, analyzing everything I’ve said and how I’ve said it, the things I should have said or shouldn’t have said. It’s exhausting.
I have anxiety wondering if I will pass this onto my daughter. I worry that she will pick up on something of the things I do and worry about and she’ll worry about the same things.
Every night before I go to bed I have to kiss Ryleigh on the forehead and tell her I love her. The one night I didn’t do it, she had a febrile seizure. I know it wasn’t because I didn’t kiss her goodnight that caused that. I’m rational enough to know that.I still won’t go to sleep without doing it, because why risk it?
I don’t know how to shut my mind off. It’s like that scene in Ghostbusters. They’re supposed to clear their minds and not think of anything at all. Thank God I would never be in that situation because it would have been a hundred times worse than just the Stay Puff Marshmallow man.
I don’t think I’ve ever had a moment in my whole life where I’ve been able to think about nothing at all. As long as I can remember I’ve had anxiety about one thing or another.
Helpful…not so helpful advice.
- Just don’t think about.
- You’re overreacting. ~No shit! I know I am, but telling me I am isn’t going to change that I can’t stop it from happening.
- Calm down ~This is as calm as I can get right now. Trust me you don’t want to see me when I’m not trying to calm myself down.
- Just get over it/Just do it. ~ You really think it’s just that easy?!
- Exercise. ~ I already feel like I can’t breathe and my arms feel like they might fall off if I stop moving my hands, the last thing I want to do is some cardio.
Other times I need someone to look me in the eyes, tell me to STOP AND BREATHE! I need that. It pretty much goes against everything I just said, but it works at least when it comes to a panic attack.
My anxiety doesn’t define who I am. It’s just something that I have to deal with. Something that’s always been there and most likely always will be. Some days it’s a battle and other days it’s more like that annoying song you can’t get out of your head, but you can push it into the back of your mind and ignore it.
I know it’s not always easy to deal with me. I know it gets more than just a little annoying when I ask someone if they are mad at me 10+ times a day. When I ask them if they’re okay and if anything is wrong. I just need to know that everything is okay and that they really aren’t mad at something that I probably made up in my own mind. Something they didn’t think twice about, but that has been replaying in my mind for the last three hours. So, thank you for putting up with me.
I am more than just my anxiety. I am brave, I am strong, I am smart, I am confident(sort of), I am funny, I am loving, I am caring, I’m a mother, I’m a daughter. I am not my anxiety.