I want to talk about anxiety in this post. There is so much shame and stigma attached to anxiety. I started really having issues with anxiety a few years ago. It comes and goes, and is mostly related to my medical issues. I HATE going into the ER because it reminds me of the times when I was super sick, especially now, after perforating and having emergency surgery. Most times that I’m in pain, I try to manage at home because I don’t want to go to the hospital. Every time I go, they have the worst time getting an IV in me, and lots of times I feel like they just think I am a drug seeker anyway. Its hard when you have a invisible disease.
I’m not sure exactly what my point is for all of this, other than anxiety issues are EXTREMELY common for people with chronic conditions. The real shitty part about anxiety is that you never know when it will hit.
Last night I was home alone because Cody was working. Around 2230 I went into my bedroom to wake up the dog and take him for a walk. When I went into the bedroom, I heard a scratching sound coming from one of the walls. I instantly got scared. Now, for those that don’t know, I live in a second story apartment, so it was extremely unlikely that it was a person making this noise, but I could not help but feel frightened. I called Cody and talked with him while I put the dogs collar on and got ready to go outside. I was scared to go outside, which of course was silly, but again I could not reason with myself at that time. I talked on the phone with Cody as a walked the dog, still feeling very uneasy. While outside, the sprinklers popped on and I even startled and felt that rush of adrenaline. At that time I laughed at myself for being so jumpy.
After I got back inside, I went back into the bedroom and could still hear the scratching sound. Cody and I deduced that it is probably a rodent problem (just what we need) and there was nothing to worry about. Cody was no longer able to chat with me on the phone so I hung up, feeling a bit better. While in the bedroom, I heard a crash in the bathroom. I again jumped and felt a jolt of adrenaline. After the initial fright I thought to myself that it was probably one of the shower suction cup hooks fell off the wall again. Then about 10 seconds later I heard a SECOND crash in the bathroom. I have never heard that twice in a row like that and I was instantly terrified. Immediately I was hyperventilating and crying. I could not reason with myself at all. I was shaking, and I couldn’t catch my breath. I knew I couldn’t call Cody back because he was busy at work, so I called one of my best friends and she helped talk me down and distract me from the panic attack. I’m sure I didn’t help that I was so worn out from my eventful, very busy weekend at the horse show too!
Now, I’m not telling this story for sympathy, I’m telling it to be transparent. I have not had a panic attack in a very long time, and had honestly forgotten all about them. Anxiety doesn’t go away, it hides. It comes and goes, its always lurking in the shadows. I frequently feel anxious about various things, but like I said, a full on attack hasn’t happened in a long time, and I can usually talk myself down very easily. It took me by surprise. And afterwords, when I can calmed down, I was EXHAUSTED! My body crashed from the after effects of the adrenaline rush.
Once I was OK again, I felt embarrassed. Me, a grown, 28 year old woman, had to call a friend because I had a panic attack from something falling in the shower. But the thing is, I shouldn’t have to feel embarrassed about that, I cant control it.
Long silly story, I know, but I want everyone who is reading this, that also deals with anxiety, to know that I SEE YOU! I understand, I get it, and I know how much it sucks. But it doesn’t make you weak! Every time you overcome an attack you get stronger, and you are not alone! And if ANYONE ever needs someone to talk them down, I am always here for you! Day or night.