It’s Been a Long Time

I was surprised when I logged on that it had been so long since my last post.  Time flies when you’re having fun?  I don’t think that’s it.  I think that I’ve moved into a stage of my life that is a bit aggravating.

I haven’t journalled in a long time.  I haven’t built my faith in God.  I haven’t been doing any self work.  I’ve been medicated, which is a great thing because I’m better for everyone else.  I just don’t feel that I’ve been doing myself any justice.

I do not have panic attacks very often anymore, thanks to 60mg per day of Celexa, but I still keep my Ativan close by.  I need it about once a week.  Life still makes me crazy sometimes.

I moved into a new position at work that keeps my very busy, and sometimes very stressed out.  Luckily, I work very closely with my new boss and he knows my issues and understands when I need to chill out for a minute or two.  He doesn’t give me anything I can’t handle, and I work hard for him.  I feel very accomplished at the end of the day, but I also feel utterly exhausted.

My insomnia seems to be my ever present bane.  It’s only gotten worse and now I don’t ever get a restful night of sleep.  On the occasions when I’m so exhausted that I can fall asleep right away, I’m so behind in my sleep that I wake up just as tired as when I went to bed.  I’ve tried every remedy I can think of, and I just have no luck in the sleep department.

I had to quit seeing my therapist because I could no longer afford to see her.  She is great, but alas, cannot work for free.  Self therapy is so hard to do when you are exhausted all the time.  My brain can’t focus on much outside of work.  I keep getting told that my workload will get better and soon I will not be stretched so far, but we’ll see.

All these things are causing my depression to creep back up again, and I’m trying like hell to keep it at bay.  I can’t afford to not get out of bed in the morning.

Ok, that’s all the whining I will do today.  I won’t be gone long because I know that my blog helps me, even when I can’t tell right at the moment.

Getting Better…Slowly

I adore my doctor.  She’s been my doctor for about 8 years now, and I’ve never given her enough credit.  I’ve always been afraid to ask her about anything having to do with my mental disorders because I was terrified that she wouldn’t believe me.  Not only does she believe me, but she very much so wants me to get to a healthy place.

I had another appointment with her last week, and she was concerned that I am taking the ativan every day.  She doesn’t want me to get addicted to it.  I understand her concern because I feel the same way.  It’s helping me so much though.  I take it when I can feel a panic attack coming on, and it calms me right down…within a few minutes.  I told her that I feel the celexa working, but it’s not enough during those really high anxiety times.  She increased my dosage to 40mg per day from 20mg per day to see if that helps.  She did promise not to take the ativan away, but she’s hoping that I’ll use it less.  Me too.

She also suggested I find a therapist, and talked with me about FMLA when I told her I was worried about missing work for it.  I know I need a therapist, and my company will pay for the first 10 sessions, so there’s really nothing stopping me but myself.  It’s seems such a daunting task.  I’ve talked about it a lot on my blog.

I’m still very frustrated that I can’t write in my handwritten journal.  I strained a ligament in my hand.  I’m hoping that with ice and ibuprofen, it will get better soon.  I have to take it easy.  At least typing isn’t painful anymore.

I guess the bright side of my injury is that I’ve been reading a lot.  I’m almost finished with the first book in the series A Song of Ice and Fire, and I will read the others.  It’s a great series so far, but it’s been a bit triggering.  I will write about it in another post.

I’m Still Here

I haven’t posted in more than a month now, and I don’t want people worried about me, so this is a quick update.

I hurt my right hand not long after my last blog post.  I haven’t been able to write for any amount of time before it swells up and I’m in pain, and typing is almost as bad.  I’ve been avoiding it in an attempt to heal.

I have been on my new anti-anxiety meds for over a month now, and I can certainly tell the difference.  I’m calmer overall, and can react in a normal way to stressful situations.  I am on 20mg of Celexa, which I take once per day, and .5mg of Ativan that I take when I am extra anxious.  I’ve been noticing that I need to take at least one Ativan per day.  I’m definitely thankful for the relief.  I have a doctor’s appointment next week, and we’ll see if she’ll keep me on my regimen or if she’ll change anything.

I think I would be even less anxious if I were able to write in my personal journal.  For the past few years, I’ve kept a handwritten journal that I write in most nights, curled up in my comfy chair.  Since I’ve hurt my hand, I haven’t been able to write at all, and that is very disheartening.  I’m trying to be extra careful with my hand so it will heal faster.  I need to be able to write, so I can purge my thoughts and clear my head.  I don’t know where to go with my anger, frustration, etc.

I will end this post now, as my hand is hurting again.  I just wanted to check in.  I have been keeping up with the blogs I read, and hopefully soon I will be able to join you all again.

Relief

I had the appointment with my doctor’s assistant today.  She prescribed Celexa and Ativan for my anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

I’m so relieved.

She believed me.  She listened to me and asked questions for about a half hour, and we really got into how this is affecting my life.  She was so attentive.  She didn’t rush me, and she didn’t make me feel like I was overreacting.  In fact, she looked shocked at some points when I mentioned some of my OCD tendencies.

I don’t know how well this medication will work out, but I’m so thankful that I asked for help.

Just Call Me Twitch

I am so on edge today.  Worse than I have been in a long time.  Every sound, every movement, every perceived expression on other people’s faces.  Everything is making me jump out of my skin.  I feel like I’m losing my mind.

I called and left a message for my doctor about my anxiety, and her nurse called me this morning.  That was a hard conversation.  She seemed to think that I was just going through an anxious spell.  I told her that I’ve had this since I was a child, and it’s just now gotten to the point that I can’t handle it anymore.  That was probably poor wording because the next question she asked me was…

“Do you feel like you are danger to yourself or others?”  That caught me a bit off-guard, and I said, “Oh God, no!”.  I don’t want anyone to ever think that about me.  I am not suicidal.  In fact, I love life in general, and I have a husband and child.  I would never take my own life, and I would NEVER hurt anyone else.

So the conversation continued with a battery of other questions.  Heart palpitations?  Check.  Panic Attacks?  Check.  Does Dr. know that you have anxiety?  Um, not yet.  I’ve been good at hiding it all these years.  And on and on until the nurse was satisfied that she had enough information to pass on to my doctor.  I was close to tears the entire time.

My doctor is rounding today, but will be in this afternoon.  I hope I get a call by the end of the day to let me know where to go from here.  If she doesn’t prescribe me meds, maybe she can refer me to a therapist or something.

I have to thank the reader’s who gave me so much encouragement.  It was a HUGE feat for me to be able to make that call.  I made the leap, and asked for help.  That is something that is incredibly hard for me.  I’ve always been self-sufficient, and pride myself on being so independent…to my detriment at times.

So here goes.  Cross your fingers that I’ll get the help I need.

And…it Gets Worse

I’ve been in crisis-mode since leaving the dentist yesterday.  We all hate going to the dentist, and I did this time especially because I knew that there had to be some damage to my teeth.

Boy, was I right.

All of my molars have stress fractures from clenching my jaw.  I will lose my molars if I don’t stop clenching my teeth.

I’m clenching my jaw because I’m so damn anxious all the time.  So now, I am not only damaging my mental well-being, but I am also physically damaging myself.    I really like to eat all kinds of foods, so this is a grim prospect.  I now have to be consciously aware to keep my teeth from touching.  I clench my jaw all the time.  I clench it harder when I’m especially anxious.  This means that I need to get on some anxiety meds to help me chill out.

I keep putting off calling my doctor.  I don’t want to have to go into an appointment with her and explain why I need to be medicated.  How do I explain to someone whose been treating me for years, that I’ve been hiding the fact that I’m a basket case from her?  I know she would hear me out, but I’m afraid that she won’t believe me, and I’ll walk out of there with no help.  Same place I am now, just without hope.  One can’t survive without the hope that things will get better.  I’m also leery about mood-altering medications since taking Effexor.  The withdrawals from going off that almost killed me.

So, I am stuck in this limbo of needing help really bad, yet I’m terrified to ask for it.

That makes me more anxious.  Le sigh…

 

Irrational Anxiety #2

I’m terrified of my car and driving my car.

Every time I get in my car, I brace myself for it to explode when I put the key in the ignition.  Every teeny-tiny smell that comes from my car makes my heart race because I’m just sure that it’s going to explode soon.

Now, my car is a good car.  It’s about 7 years old with only 60,000 miles on it, and I take good care of it.  I haven’t had a serious issue with it yet.  These facts don’t stop me from being afraid of my vehicle.

I hate going anywhere in my car, and that’s really unfortunate because I have to go to work everyday, I have to run errands everyday, and I have to pick my daughter up from her after-school program everyday.  As you can imagine, this is a huge anxiety booster for me because this is something that I can’t avoid, at all.  I have to drive…my car.

Not only does my car terrify me, but my driving abilities terrify me as well.  I am a great driver, but I imagine these scenarios where I forget to slow down for a stop light and drive right into traffic (this is every time I hit a stoplight), or I will swerve into oncoming traffic, or my hands will do something my brain can’t control and I’ll end up in an accident.  The best one is when I see a pedestrian, and I worry that I’ll drive up on the sidewalk and hit them.

I know it’s healthy to be aware of possible scenarios when you are driving.  Every driver needs to stay sharp, and not take anything for granted, but this is nuts.  I can’t ever enjoy a drive because I have these irrational fears that I am going to lose control and any number of things could happen.  I could kill myself, my daughter, or strangers I don’t even know.

It’s normal to have these thoughts occasionally, but I have them every single moment I am in my car.  That combined with the fact that I feel like my car will explode makes for a very unfortunate situation.

I hate that part of my life, and it’s such a big one.

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