It’s been quite a struggle since I had my breakdown in March 2013, and a long hard slog to get back to where I am now. But I can feel it returning. The palpitations are back, along with the anxiety attacks, sleepless nights, headaches and a desire to hide under the duvet and hide from the world. I’m still taking the meds, practicing the CBT techniques and yet feel part of myself trying to slip away again
This time though there is a difference. I’m not going to let it take me down again. Last time it was sudden, I wasn’t expecting it (although others may have been) and was somewhere I’d never been before, well out of my comfort zone and didn’t know how to handle it or what to do. I allowed the anxiety to control me and my actions – or should I say inactions. But I’m prepared now and going to fight them head on. I had some fantastic help from my GP, the mental health nurse at the surgery and the counsellor. And of course I have no idea where I’d be without my fantastic husband, youngest daughter and adopted brother. Others helped too of course and I think they know who they are.
I guess part of the ability to fight is knowing what to expect and that much of it is physical responses to hormones, I was warned that there would be setbacks and the amount of changes this year I shouldn’t be surprised.
Anxiety trigger 1. Giving up smoking on New year’s day. 3 weeks smoke free now, and while I’m quite pleased that I’ve had the willpower to keep at it and it will be making me healthier I still miss it and crave it.
Anxiety trigger 2. Going back to work. Ok so it’s only part time, a few hours a week but I’m doing it and compared to being unable to leave the house at all for months, then only able to go out with my husband or youngest daughter it is a HUGE achievement. The hours I’m doing are increasing gradually week by week and of course I’m all on my own at work, no hubby, daughter just me and everyone else at the company. Some I know as they’ve been there a while but there are a lot of new faces and strangers. Things have changed quite a bit. I do appreciate how lucky I am though; if Carlsberg made bosses they’d be my two. Not only did they keep my job for me but are allowing me to work whatever hours I want and not pressuring me at all. The first couple of weeks I was upstairs with them doing the accounts on a computer they’d set up there just for me. There’s only so much accounts you can do though so I’ve now ventured downstairs into the production area, talking to other members of staff when not accounting. Yes I am bloody proud of this accomplishment too.
Anxiety trigger 3. Losing the support of one of my crutches. Well not really losing the support as such, it just feels like it, their life has changed, they have their own issues and well there are some things that are reminding me of the reason for my breakdown in the first place.
So I shouldn’t be surprised really that the symptoms are coming back. I’m dealing with them though. I’m not letting them prevent me from doing things, I feel the attacks start and ride through them, breathe, use the inhalator, remind myself that the attacks have a time limit and if I can ride through it will go away. I am stronger than the anxiety and panics and I won’t let it pull me down again.
Living in UK one thing you can pretty much guarantee is a healthy supply of precipitation which can result in floods – according to the signs on the road anyway.
Often I have driven through flooded roads that do not have warning signs on gotta love aquaplaning it sure gets your heart beating faster. Other times there are signs for floods and well no flood to be found.
I saw a sign the other day that said flood, but all I saw was a slightly larger than average puddle. Made me wonder if there is such a word as Floodle – a cross between a flood and a puddle. I googled it and it came up with a breed of dog. It also appears to be a spell in World of Warcraft.
Oh well back to the drawing board on inventing new words
I hate suffering from insomnia. At least once a week I am awake all night so get up out of frustration and the rest of the time my sleep isn’t so much broken but smashed into smithereens.
The doctor reluctantly gave me some sleeping pills which are great – when nightmares don’t wake me and if I can do nothing the day after as I’m left looking and acting like a zombie. (some might not notice the difference anyway)
One well-known piece of advice is to count sheep. Sounds great until while you are counting them you suddenly find yourself in the middle of a snowstorm and lose half of the buggers. Then there’s the noise from the bleating, whatever happened to The Silence of the Lambs?? These were anything but silent.
Anyway, I was getting quite annoyed by now and very irritable, being very tired and unable to sleep kind of does that to me and as I have a teenie, weenie bit of a thing for Dragons, thought I’d count Dragons instead. First though had to get rid of those noisy sheep so simplest solution was to have the Dragons eat them.
I never did get round to counting the Dragons. I was having too much fun playing with them and flying with them in my imagination to even think about sleeping, so I got up and wrote this
The artwork is called Halfway to Hades and the poem is Demons
So this quitting smoking malarky isn’t all that easy after all. Day 5 is DEFINATELY the worse cravings and emotionally wise. Not only have I and my hubby given up but also my youngest daughter and a colleague at work.
Day 5 we ALL agree is the day when you want to rip someones head off their shoulders and or smash or destroy everything around you, that and want to cry. All at the same time.
As none of us are in prison we made it through day 5. I’m now on day 7. It’s a little easier but not wanting to kill so many is a definate improvement.
One minute at a time I will give up and succeed. Minutes turn to hours, hours turn to days and days to weeks. Eventually it hopefully will be weeks turn into months and months turn to years and years to decades
I wrote this a number of years ago, well sort of wrote it, I woke from sleep got out of bed and wrote it down exactly as it had come to me. All I did the next day was add punctuation.