Moderate Anxiety

Dealing with some anxiety here tonight, first time I felt like this in quite some time.  I was watching something on tv and I guess some of it hit home with some things that I was and have been going through in life.

I just started to feel like I couldn’t swallow and then my heart was fluttering and my whole body started to tingle.

In all honesty I should try to go to sleep since its close on 5 am………

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When anxiety gets stronger

As I wrote last night I was feeling the anxiety getting stronger and stronger and I was beginning not to function well, this was the first time that anxiety has controlled me to this magnitude in a very long time. Probably over 2 years.  It was well over a year since I took ativan.  Until these past 8 weeks or so when I began taking them again, and I still was not taking them often.  Just as needed, less than one a day, and only when the need got bad enough that I knew I needed one.

So lately when the anxiety was ‘visiting’ I could tell it was getting worst.  Each bout of anxiety seemed to be getting stronger than the last.

It was like some house guest that was beginning to get angry, and rude and had overstayed its welcome.  It was time for anxiety to pack up and take a hike… but instead it was watching, hanging on to my every move, controlling….laughing somewhere in the distance as it watched me struggle.

Shallow breathing, while anxietie’s talons were gripping my heart.  Squeeze, let go and repeat, squeeze, hold, let go, repeat. Each time anxiety squeezed it seemed to hold on just a little longer, waiting for my reactions as I siphoned for air.

Sheer terror and panic were rising inside my body as a tear or two escaped my eyes, running silently down my cheeks.

4:30 am was when I finally began to feel calmness come again.  I told anxiety to never come back, banished it from my life.

But like the stalker that anxiety is, it will be back.  But I will be ready.

Anxiety

Sitting here at 2:40 am and all I feel is a terrible heart gripping anxiety.  Anxiety is winning tonight.  I feel it in every part of my body.  My arms, my legs.  But mostly I feel it squeezing my heart, causing it to flutter.  Skipping a beat here and there.  Sending waves of panic through me.

I hate this feeling….trying to act normal when my heart is fluttering and my brain is screaming at me.

Crowds

There have been times in my life when I have felt completely alone while standing in a room full of people.  Alone in my thoughts while hundreds of hearts beat all around me.  Faces smile at me but I see no one and am unable to return the gesture.  Blank eyes trying to focus on unfamiliar faces, deaf ears refusing to hear the words that are spoken, instead hearing a steady hum of misunderstood chatter.

In this setting, although there are people surrounding me, I feel completely alone and completely helpless.

Sometimes the crowded setting brings anxiety.  A spin within myself, an urge to get out of the situation and get out now.  Anxiety that is an almost deafening, roaring in my ears.  Sheer panic building up within me, coming from somewhere deep inside my soul.  In this setting I am unable to get out fast enough.  But I try very hard, and refuse to let myself break down before I am out of the situation.

And then there are the times when I am in crowds and I feel fine, I feel more then fine. I am having a good time, hanging out with friends, having a few laughs. Giggling.  These are cherished moments that I try to hang on to.

Because if I do not hang on to these good moments in crowds I would never let myself be put into a crowded situation ever again.

I try to remind myself that not every time I am in a crowd something bad happens, sometimes it is fun or sometimes I get through it just fine.

Not all crowded situations are good for me, but then, not all are bad either.

Feelings

I just want to crawl under a rock and burrow deep into the darkness.  Let the lack of light swallow me whole.  Covering me in shadows, surrounding me in the chaos that are the thoughts inside my mind.

Knowing the doubts and fears that have begun to swallow me whole.

Silent screams that rock my body to its core.  Yet no sound emerges.

The beast that is anxiety rearing its ugly head, surrounding my heart with its icy cold fingers, griping and releasing, griping and releasing.

A sense of urgency rolling in waves through my body.

Caught in the grasp of Anxiety

It feels like something is squeezing my heart, and while it is doing so my heart is skipping a beat or two, all the while fluttering as if a bunch of butterflies were trying to escape a single cocoon at the very same time.

A feeling of doom, dread.  Surfacing or rather almost surfacing.  Trying to drown me just under the surface of a deep and dark ocean current.  Cold water pressing down on me, threatening to cause shock.

Eyes squeezed together, waiting for it to take me, but it never does.

Instead it continues to loom over me, threatening something it will never fully complete.  Squeezing my heart – putting fear in my body.  Showing glimpses of the chaos it can bestow on my life, tightening its hold on me with its many tentacles.

This is what anxiety was doing to me at 3:40 Am this morning.

Trigger Response – Corresponding Memories

Trigger.  A topic, word, phrase, item, picture, smell, taste or song that can create an emotional response in someone or cause them to relive an experience.  Traumatic or otherwise.

We all have them.

Something that triggers a response in our brains to remember a corresponding memory.  Sometimes these memories are positive, rewarding memories.  Other times they are negative, sinister memories.

Some of these triggers may be weird.  But that is the thing about triggers – you do not get to choose which ones affect you, or how they affect you.  You cannot control the triggers, but sometimes the triggers can seem to control you.

I have good triggers.  They are my ‘happy’ triggers.  They make me feel warm and fuzzy.  Loved.

My wedding song does this.  I hear it on the radio.  It might sometimes cause me to cry, but in a good way.  I remember one of the happiest moments in my life.  I drift back to the moment I was dancing with my husband.  Our first dance as a married couple, with a shared last name.

I cut sandwiches and toast from top left corner to bottom right corner creating two ‘triangle like’ pieces.  Sometimes without even thinking I cut my bread into squares. My Dad used to to this.  These are the times I know he is with me, watching over me, protecting me.  It always seems to happen on a particularly bad day.  As if he is trying to remind me that I am not alone.

Then there are the other triggers, the ones that cause a negative response.

I have triggers that bring up very painful memories for me.  They cause me to shake, sweat, feel nauseous, and have even caused me to cry.  They make my skin crawl and my spine tingle.

Cabbage Patch dolls are one of my bad triggers.  If I see them, even in a picture I literally shudder.  I feel sick to my stomach, I start to shake, and my heart begins to beat faster.

The anxiety begins and my mind travels back to a memory stuck in time, like some black and white slide that someone stuck on repeat in the projector.  I have tried to over come this, but I get the same emotional and physical response every time.

I have an extremely hard time when something in my own home triggers me.  It makes me feel like I have no control in my personal space.

My suppose to be safe place.  No longer safe.  Instead, invaded by thoughts, memories and flashbacks of something my brain has long since tried to forget.

I have this one song that does this for me.  I have the same trigger response as the Cabbage Patch dolls.  Its one of those stupid one-hit-wonders.  Sometimes I will be watching television and I hear it come on.  It still makes my heart squeeze with anxiety, beating faster.  Worry lines creasing my brow, tingles up my spine and skin crawling.

I hate that I let these little insignificant items become such a big significant, controlling part of my life.  It bothers me that after all these years my body still continues to have a negative emotional and physical response to these triggers.  A response that I have absolutely no control over.

I have other triggers, some good – some bad.  The good triggers, I cherish.  A warm, happy memory flooding my heart and memory.  But the bad – they make me want to scream “Why can’t you just leave me alone.  I was doing fine before you flooded my mind.”

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