I know for me, anxiety is not the best feeling. How about for you?
Have you ever had a muscle that was so tight you didn’t know how to make it feel any better? That is what my heart feels like when I have anxiety. I get butterflies. Along with tingling and chest pain on top of it all when it gets really bad. The more I think about my anxiety, and the more that I try to pinpoint what caused it, the worse my symptoms feel. It is so difficult for me not to spiral into a panic attack when this happens.
Panic attacks are the worst and seem to happen at the most awful time. When you are in the grocery store, waiting in line at the post office, or out to dinner with your friends. It happens. I have found that talking to those who also have severe anxiety can be helpful because they can relate. I also read a book that had great reviews. I bought it off of Amazon because I was desperate to have some relief. I got about half way through the book and my anxiety subsided for a little while. It seemed to come back worse than ever though after a few weeks of sleeping well, not having panic attacks, and eating well. How could it just come out of nowhere? Well… that is anxiety for ya! Ugh. Isn’t it just a pain in your rear end?
There are so many things that you can try, that I have tried myself. Meditation, exercise, routine, books, therapy sessions, journaling- the list goes on. Eventually, I was getting some pretty terrible chest pains daily, so after years and years of battling the anxiety and panic attacks, I asked my doctor for her advice. She recommended, again, medication.
Let me fill you in on a little secret about me. I never take medication- in high school I dated a kid after my family member passed away. I was vulnerable and feeling lonely, so I thought that I really cared for this person. They were on drugs. This person I was dating really had a good heart deep down and I knew that all he wanted was a life of sobriety, but for me, this made me NEVER want to touch any type of medication whether it be over the counter or prescribed. It is also healthier for my body. I don’t take medication for headaches, body aches, etc. Well… anxiety was kicking me in the ass hard, so I caved. I agreed to the medication because I was desperate for some relief. I tried two different medications and didn’t feel like myself on one, and then had a problem with vivid dreams with another. I finally found one that I agreed to take half of a normal dose daily, and guess what? For me it worked! I’m not ashamed of it because it was time to allow something that has been so out of my control for so long, to help me. I started sleeping again, the chest pains went away, and I felt less on edge. It doesn’t get rid of the anxiety completely, but I feel as if now I am not on this roller coaster with massive peaks and drops. I feel level and that the worst of the anxiety is under control.
Now that you know all of that- if you read my first post, you’ll know that last week was one of the worst episodes of anxiety I have had in a VERY long time. Not only did I have anxiety, I was completely stressed out and depressed. So if the medication was helping so much, why did this specific time did it decide to dodge the medication and throw a ton of bricks at me? I will never know the answer to that, but I can tell you that it always gets better. When you are feeling at your very lowest like I did, it will get better. There is always a light to work toward when you are surrounded by the darkness that is anxiety. When you feel most alone, try to evaluate each relationship that you have in your life (the positive ones of course), and realize that even though you may not feel like it in that moment, you are loved. You are thought of. And you are brave enough to climb your way through anything. Everyone is stronger than they think. Believe in yourself and you will get there. So many are on your side. Know that and believe it.
Do something this weekend for yourself. Just do it without thinking about it or making a plan.
If you or someone is in need of other resources, I have found https://adaa.org/living-with-anxiety/ask-and-learn/resources and https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/anxiety-disorders/index.shtml helpful to gain some extra knowledge.