They say, “time heals everything”, but I’m still waiting…

Exhaustion. Fatigue. The result of prolonged anxiety. I’ve definitely been in a rut since returning from Hawaii. Work has been busy, now that Spring is here my yard is in need of an overhaul and Hallmark holidays are coming up that I dread. One in particular – Father’s Day. 

A reminder of my non-existent relationship with my Father. A reminder of the resentment I hold. A reminder of how much I wish things could be different. Usually for these holidays we spend time with my in-laws since my Mom and Step Dad live out of town. Lately spending time with anyone but my Husband or leaving the house in general is a real drag. Perhaps another sign that I need to make some changes in my life.

Other things on my mind: my cat still has a growth on her head, need to call the vet tomorrow. Feeling guilty for asking to work remote tomorrow despite the fact my boss(s) said it was ok. Stressed about the volume of work that I need to do. Need to finish removing shrubs from my gardens. Need to pick out new shrubs and order mulch. I understand a lot of this is “first world problems” or to some people not really problems at all but when you have generalized anxiety disorder all of these “to-dos” are overwhelming. I also really need to lose weight and stop eating my feelings. 

I’ve been thinking about writing a novel. I like to write – it distracts me from my self and is a good outlet for me creatively. After weeks of thinking about the storyline of my book I had a dream Saturday night that wrote my book for me. I tend to like twisted books and movies and always pictured myself writing a twisted novel or a self help book for others struggling with my mental disorders. Looks like someone else made the decision for me. Now to find time to write…

Hope everyone has a great week! 

Sunday Blues

Sunday nights. Where anxiety takes over. Physically, I feel like crap. Mentally, I’m preparing for a crazy week at work. New management is making my work life difficult at the moment. A blizzard is on its way. 3 weeks until we leave for Hawaii. A normal person would be excited. All I can think about is what may go wrong. I feel like I have a cold, again. Daylight savings time kicked in and we lost an hour today. 

I’m trying really hard to be positive. On a positive note I went shopping at the outlet mall and went to Target at 1pm on a Saturday. You’re probably thinking – so what? For me that’s huge. I’ve avoided going out in public during peak times for years. I also went to Lowes and BJs today during peak time. Whhhaaaaatttt! 

Anyway, essential oils are helping me sleep better. Lavender, peppermint and lemongrass are my go to for the diffuser. If I’m having extra bad insomnia frankincense knocks me out but I feel kind of hung over them next day. 

I’m debating writing a book of poetry. Does anyone even read poetry anymore? I find writing so calming and I love poems. Maybe a novel would be better? πŸ€”

Time to give hubby a haircut. Sorry this post is so random.

Have a great week. πŸ™ƒ

Welp, it had finally happened.

I’ve spent the past 6 years of my career successfully avoiding any continuing education opportunities that involve traveling. Until yesterday, when the CCO asked me if I would be interested in going to a conference in NYC. I couldn’t say no. 

Good news is that I have convinced my husband to come with me and we are driving not flying. More good news is that the conference itself is only half of a day – most are a few days. If I was going to go to any this would be ideal. 

I’m excited and so nervous. This particular conference is a smaller one (about 200) and it seems to be more of an exclusive event so I’ll really be representing the company that I work for. I hope it goes by fast and nobody talks to me. Better yet, I hope I can hide my anxiety long enough to get through it. HA. I have 3 weeks to mentally prepare. 

I’m feeling really overwhelmed lately. The holidays are not my favorite. Especially during times of family feud and political disagreements. I just don’t have the energy. I feel like I don’t have the energy for anything anymore…

If I could get more than 4 hours of sleep that would be great. Anxiety kicks my ass.

Is it breakfast time yet? 🐽😁

Head up, stay strong, fake a smile, move on…

Literally everything gives me anxiety. Thoughts, actions, nothing at all. It’s almost always present.

Busy weekends make for rough weeks for me. The things I have going on are things that probably wouldn’t make most people anxious. In fact, one of the things I’m doing most people look forward to because it relaxes them. 

The weekend started with helping my Sister move a few yards of top soil on Friday night after work. Let’s say I’m really out of shape and my entire body is still sore today. Saturday I cleaned my house, weeded my gardens, went to my Sister’s to see her horses, got my oil changed, came home and did laundry, went grocery shopping, and started to gut our master bathroom for remodeling. This morning consisted of waking up, meal prepping for the week (trying to lose a few lbs…!) and continuing to gut the master bathroom. 6 hours later, I’m taking a break to blog, getting something to drink and trying to stay upright (it’s 90 degrees outside). I’m exhausted.

Going to work everyday makes me extremely anxious. I sit at my desk and try to push through panic attacks while trying to maintain a somewhat normal faΓ§ade. So Sunday nights are usually really hard for me as I dread that and it drains the life out of me everyday. You may recall in a previous post of mine that I had a bad panic attack while getting my hair done about 2 months ago. As a result, I’m now petrified of that happening again, especially because it was so obvious that my hair dresser asked me if I was ok and I ended up running out with wet hair. I’ve since told her that I suffered with anxiety and, to my surprise, she offered to do my hair in a private room in the salon. How lucky did I get that my salon has a private room? Even though this should make going a little easier (if I freak out at least it’s only in front of her and not the entire salon), I’m still so anxious about it. To top it off it’s on Thursday, so I have 4 more days of anticipation. As I type this I can’t help but feel completely ridiculous. This illness is horrible.

I also  have various meetings this week at work that I’m going to have to sit through that are going to test my strength as I fight through panic, trying to hide what is really happening. This coming weekend is a long weekend (thank god), but it’s going to be a busy one. Family will be in town and the master bathroom project will continue. This part of my family knows about my anxiety (well, some of them) but they don’t get it. I told my Dad that I had Generalized Anxiety Disorder and just last weekend he asked me “How’s the anxiety? Better? You need to just take a deep breath and calm down, life is good”. I just smiled and thought to myself “you have no idea…”. And It’s true. People who don’t have an anxiety disorder have no idea about the struggle. They have no idea what it’s like to have no control over your thoughts (or your body), and how frustrating that is. If only I knew what triggered this. If only there was something that I could do (besides quit working and become an absolute hermit) that would make this better or better yet make it go away. But even if I did do that, I would still have anxiety. It’s a part of me.

In a nutshell, I’m already wishing away the upcoming week. Wishing away the long weekend. I look at it all as more obstacles that I have to somehow get through. In 2 weeks my Husband and I are going to Cape Cod for a long weekend. Staying at a nice bed and breakfast with no plans. We’re driving there so I don’t have to fly. I’m even anxious about that. I miss the days where I could actually genuinely enjoy things without zero worry.

Welp, it’s time for me to get back to work. 😩. I’ll leave you with a picture that makes me happy, and envious (it’s 90 degrees in my house and I want his life). Oh, and also a picture of the progress we have made so far! Until next time…πŸ™


Stress vs. Anxiety

That moment when you’re really anxious and someone asks you what’s going on and you say “I’m fine just a little anxious” and they say “yea I’m stressed too”. I didn’t think anything of the comment at first, then later on I started thinking about what that really meant.

When you’re stressed, there’s a means to an end. The project you’re working on that’s stressing you out will eventually end. Your busy weekend will come to an end. Stress is usually self induced. You took that stressful job, you made too many plans that weekend. 

When you have anxiety you have no control. You can’t pin point what exactly is making you anxious most times. Although there are things you can do to make it more tolerable, there’s nothing you can do to make it go away. It’s typically not self induced. It’s rough.

I’m not trying to downplay feeling stressed. The feeling of stress and anxiety are unfavorable. I’m simply trying to bring an awareness to anxiety and more importantly work towards ending the stigma. This person asked me what’s going on because I may have been quiet and seemed a little distant, not because I looked like I needed to be checked in to the psych ward. 

Today is Memorial Day. Feeling grateful for those who have made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our freedom. Also reflecting on the mental health of our veterans that return from war with PTSD, anxiety, panic disorder, depression. Be kind to people…you never know what kind of internal battles they may be fighting. πŸ’œπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ

Patience is a virtue.

So hubby and I are on vacation in the Florida Keys. Everything is great. I survived the two flights here with panic that I could somewhat control and everything went off without a hitch. We have been down here since Sunday afternoon doing some exploring and relaxing on the beach. My Grandmother lives in Florida so I don’t get to see her much since we live in New York. When she heard the news that we were coming to the Keys for vacation she asked me if her and my Mother could join. I checked with hubby and hesitated to say yes, but only for a few days. They arrived last night.

The resort that we are staying at is large and there is a lot to do. The grounds are beautiful. Last night the 4 of us had dinner. Hubby and I got a little too much sun so we weren’t feeling the best. It was busy in the restaurant so I was quiet, trying to keep my anxiety at bay and observing what was going on around me. This includes my Mother. I watched her daze off while everyone is talking and suddenly snap out of it, telling us she was going to go out and have a cigarette since it was taking so long to get our food. My immediate reaction was really? We’re in a nice restaurant on the resort and you’re going to get up, leave the restaurant and smoke by the pool (which is a non smoking area). I said something of course and she got upset, but from my perspective it just seemed rude. After a few minutes I began to think: was this her anxiety? Was she looking for an excuse to get a breather because she was uncomfortable too? Then I figured if I can suffer through an hour with the family she can too. Plus I was delaying her smoking so I may have added a few minutes to her life. Right?

We finish eating and by this time it is dark. Mom wants to walk around and see the resort. My Grandmother is 80 years young (😌) but you wouldn’t be able to tell if it wasn’t for her exterior. She may look 80 but mentally she’s sharp and witty. Sarcastic and loving. I like to think we’re a lot a like in that regard. She had 2 knee replacements about 25 years ago and put on a good amount of weight. She isn’t in the best physical shape and the only walking she really does is a few feet from chair to chair. She is old give her a break! 

Well my Mother decides that we need to power walk the grounds in the dark (some of it is lit, some isn’t) and she’s bringing Granny along. My poor Grandma can barely breathe let alone keep up with her. My Mom seems to get pleasure out of this, almost like she thinks she is doing some good getting Grandma some physical exercise. Meanwhile I’m getting horrible anxiety because as I hear my Grandma breathing heavily all I can think of is her collapsing or falling and something serious happen or she is hospital bound the rest of he trip. Leave it to my crazy Mom to royally screw this up. As I watched my Grandma bee line it down the hallway to the chair in her room I thought to myself I better say something to Mom. My Mom is not self aware and she’s been known to do insensitive things from time to time. 

We got to the room and Granny tells us she loves us and will see us tomorrow with the little air that she has in her lungs and  heads in to take a seat. Mom walks in after her and I ask her to come into the hallway. I nicely explained to her what I witnessed. She brushed it off acting like Grandma needed it and I was being too sensitive. Maybe I was but just because I didn’t want anything to happen to her and I saw how bad she was struggling. If my anxiety has taught me anything it’s that everyone struggles with something and having a little empathy for someone can make their life a lot easier. There is no worse feeling than being ashamed of yourself due to your limitations, mentally or physically. I understand that we grow by pushing ourselves but everyone has limits. 

My Grandfather passed away a few years ago now. He was very athletic until he was diagnosed with dementia the last 10 years of his life. On vacations he was right alongside the kids laughing and doing physical things. He was always the opposite of Grandma. My Mom was a Daddy’s girl and I think she misses having him around during times like these. But Grandma is who she is and she is 80 and not fit to run a marathon. When I think of my Mom I think of her as being 35-40 years old in my mind (she is 55). Perhaps that’s how she thinks of my Grandma. 

Needless to say I hope that we can have fun and accommodate Grandma the rest of the trip without my Mom giving her (or I) a heart attack. We are still here 2 more full days and I’m already having anxiety over the flight home and starting a new job on Monday. When I booked this trip I was so excited thinking I would be able to relax and get my mind right before starting the new job. Then the vacation is here and the reality sets in: my disorder follows me everywhere. I can’t escape it to matter how hard I try. It probably doesn’t help that my family hijacked my vacation but the anxiety would be here regardless. It is what it is. 

And with that, it’s almost 4am, I’ve been up all night and Mom has an action packed day planned so I better try to put my anxious mind to bed. Wish me luck.  

 

Anxious thoughts of the night…

I hate the insomnia that anxiety gives me. HATE. I’m exhausted. 

I’ve been off of work for the past week. It’s been great. Went to visit my parents out of state, finished up a few house projects and relaxed a little. Overall, my anxiety has been down and I’ve been happy.

Until last night…

My cat was batting around a huge spider in my livingroom. When I turned on the light and went over to see what she was doing the spider was legit fighting back. Fangs or legs up and all! I killed the crap out of that thing. Then my cat started acting weird. I couldn’t tell if maybe it bit her or she was just scoping out the scene to make sure it was a loner? Either way, she seems ok now but all I can think about is where more may be in my house. I am a crazy exterminator and normally only see a dead body in the basenent every now and then. When the world wakes up I will be getting new spider killer and going to town on my house for a piece of mind…

So I go back to work on Monday. I made the mistake of checking my work emails. I had almost 300 unread that I managed to whittle down to 153 action items. Why I decided to do that on a Saturday night is beyond me. I ruined my Saturday night – no fun and no sleep. It is now Sunday morning and I’m lying here wide awake. Can’t wait to see what tonight brings….😰

Every once in a while it smells like natural gas in our house, particularly the stove/oven and our dryer. My husband checked all gas connections and everything is sealed properly. He is suspecting that maybe it’s just a bad batch of gas? Regardless, I need to call the gas company and have them come out and look at it. Until then, of course I happen to put on a top before bed last night that came out of the dryer with a faint smell of gas. Which has proceeded to keep me up thinking about how my house is going to probably blow up at any minute every time I get a whiff of it. 

Bottom line: I’m sure that was a lone spider and my house isn’t infested. I will get through my first week back in the office. It won’t be easy but I will survive. We’ve had this interminent gas problem for about 4 months now and the house has not blown up. Waiting another day to call the gas company should be fine.

But you can’t tell me any of that because I don’t think rationally at times like this. I know the reality, but my mind takes everything to another level.

So I’m going to spend another hour on Pinterest. By then the sun may start to come up unless it will be another gloomy day. I will see my husband off to the home opener football game this morning for a day of tailgating and fun with his buddies (I would die there). Then I will make my taco dip, shower and head over to my sister’s to watch the game and hang out with my new yellow lab puppy nephew. And prob start passing out at 3pm due to last night’s insomnia. 

Hoping tonight will be better. 😊