Thursday, May 29, 2014

Spontaneous Combustion

Last week(s) I was in a spirally funk. Stay at home mom depression? No. Just the subconscious dread and fear and dread and anxiety and dread that gives me cuticle chewing anxiety for a week and exhausting PTSD for a month. After I have one panic attack, no matter how minor it is, it's hard to get out of that loop. The circle of the anxious life.

It's been like my outsides are collapsing on my insides and my insides are about to burst out of my outsides. I'm sure that's a the formula for spontaneous combustion 101. Or how a blow fish must feel.

Blow fish I feel your pain.

But really. I'm super frustrated about all this joyful rise of emotions. Because really, what do I have to be so anxious about? (Rad's tantrums, Rad's running away like he's trying to find Neverland, Rhett's attempts at public nudity, how we forgot to take the garbage to the curb and it stinks to high hog heaven...) Life is pretty much decent if not really good. I just keep (not exaggerating) losing my marbles about small potatoes.

For example:

My silent but almost deadly morning long anxiety attack about getting all two kids in the car and to preschool drop-off without any major hiccups was all for nothing. All of Rhett's limbs stayed in the car, Rad stared off into the abyss of Arizona desert, and Katy Perry was all over the radio. But if you had seen me before the short 15 minute drive you would have thought that the walking dead were trying to take Rhett to preschool. I know...woe is me. Not woe to those who have legitimate struggles.

So let's keep the train of lame emotional issues rolling, rolling, rolling.

And then, you'd never believe this, so hold on to your seats and whatever beverage you're drinking because our pavers for our backyard got lost in translation between the store and delivery and didn't come in on the scheduled day. The HOROR! Any normal person would let it go, let it go,  and maybe turn their back and slam the door...and leave it at that. But I'm not a Disney princess so I just melt into a pool of anxiety and obsess about how it's not working out like planned. And all my functionality goes flat.

The worst part is how this is affecting my boys. I think of their confusion when I snap for their small inconsequential mistakes. I hear myself apologize for the third time in an hour because I feel beyond overwhelmed and anxious. As much as possible I don't want my cray cray to spread because I'm not doing everything I can to fix it.

The thing is I've done the anti anxiety medication before and I know it helps, but I'm reeling at the idea of possibly needing a pill to help me be normal because I've worked dang hard to learn how to work through anxiety and triggers and I feel like going back to medication is discrediting the progress I've made.

Today might be better...or it might be worse (pretty please no no no no no no no no) but there are nice moments to get me through. I know that life really is very good. The worst part about anxiety and/or depression is it makes it really hard to feel peace be it spiritual, physical, emotional so especially when you need the peace it's hard to access simply because your mind and body can't process it. You're too overwhelmed with other crap to have any peace stay. I don't talk about my faith much, but this recent and semi-constant battle wears at it sometimes. (If you don't want to read another sentence or two about my churchy faith stuff you can skip ahead, or you know where the nearest exit is. It looks a little something like...X.) But anyway in a nutshell when I feel myself wavering the most, I remember when the Savior was in the Garden of Gethsemane atoning for us and experiencing sorrow and pain (both physical and emotional) and grief and even He felt totally alone wondering where God was. I try to remember that in my lowest moments that it's not that I'm not being heard or loved or helped, it's that the anxiety and depression sometimes block the ability to feel it for the moment.

And so...I didn't set out to write a downer of a rambler post but I can feel it in my currently melancholic insides that this just might qualify. If you're still reading I totally apologize. Let me know if I've added any extra woe to your day and I'll mail you something with a proven track record for a sugar high to boost you up.

Annnd next time I post I promise it'll be happier. With rose colored glasses, happy emoticons and all.

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  1. This doesn't add woes to my life, it actually just gives me some validation! I am a new mommy of a three year old and sometimes I feel like I'm not going to be able to cope with all she comes with! I always just think 'one day at a time'. All I have to think about is today, and pray Jesus helps me today and not stress about the what ifs and oh-nos that tomorrow may bring. Phew. You got this Julia! Jesus doesn't want you to feel alone, so just think about how we might be feeling it together :)

  2. The thing is I've done the anti anxiety medication before and I know it helps, but I'm reeling at the idea of possibly needing a pill to help me be normal because I've worked dang hard to learn how to work through anxiety and triggers and I feel like going back to medication is discrediting the progress I've made.

    So this is just my perspective, but what you wrote above isn't right :)
    There are people in the world who take a pill to even out their thyroid. Or because they need insulin. Same goes for those of us that need a boost of seratonin. It took me a LONG time to be ok with being on a med all the time, but you know what? That med makes me the person I'm supposed to be....not the person who's pulling out her hair all day. If life is better on meds, so be it...that's why they were created. XO Julia! You are doing a fabulous job!

  3. I think you are so wonderful! I have panic attacks too and my poor husband still doesn't understand. I feel like there's a time bomb in my chest and it will explode. Things that help me: compression, things like tight hugs with my arms crossed in front of me. It helps you lo brain focus on a confined space. If I can't get the hug I pile on the blankets and practically swaddle myself haha. Taking Fish oil, and B 12 help take the edge off. Going out on regular mommy nights with friends to "fill my bucket" panic attacks are not "logical" in our sense but they are a way for your body to tell you something isn't right so stop under valuating your very valid emotions. The more you fight them and tell yourself how ridiculous you are the more your attacks will happen.

    You're so great!
    Call your VT, they are hand picked friends from Heavenly Father. They'll help you. (And if you hesitate to call because you don't want to make them serve you or whatever. Keep 9 mind that if you were to receive the same phone call you wouldn't care, you would jump in the car and do as much as you could to help them. Give someone else that chance too.)

  4. Julia, I am taking anti-anxiety medication right now. I felt so ashamed that I had to take a pill to calm down. I tried breathing techniques, I tried yoga, I tried tea, I tried ice cream. I tried everything and nothing made me calm down and the attacks kept coming, as in three or four times a week. But, now that I am taking the pill, I totally agree with Allison's comment above; the medication makes me the person that I know that I am. :) I think you are amazing, and it really doesn't matter if you take the pill or you don't, as long as you are happy and healthy.

  5. I understand your hesitation to take medicine. It is a very personal decision if "the risks outweigh the benefits" for you. Make a pros and cons list and decide. Ask your husband and those close to you how they feel because your decision affects them too. And it is nice to get an outside opinion because you will not be a good judge of yourself in your current emotional state. I'm just giving you this advice because I have been there. I know the feelings of guilt for your 1st world problems. I know the constant obsession of whether your kids will grow up to have a good relationship with you and be decent members of society. I truly admire your openness. If all women were open like this and stuck together rather than judge, we would be able to support each other and lift each other up. I love you.


I really appreciate all of your thoughts and comments! They bring a smile to my face!