Sunday, August 18, 2013

Baby Steps

My 3-day weekend ends tomorrow. I'm pretty positive that is a good thing. I've had nothing but time to let thoughts spiral. It's still been a positive weekend, because I've learned a lot about how to go forward. I've been trying to make proactive decisions, not just avoiding things. Last night on a whim, Steven and I took Davie to a citywide family-friendly gathering at the park. I don't do a lot of things in groups without planning, so this was a good step for me. We had a great time.

I slept well last night and set my alarm for 8am. I got right up, got dressed, and the family went on a long walk in the neighborhood. I tried to schedule in little doable events throughout the day. Yes, one of those events was to lay in the hammock. But another one was to take a yoga class at the YMCA. Davie and I went to the grocery store. I played guitar and did puzzles with Davie in between.

I haven't been eating much this weekend, and I confirmed at the gym what I suspected - weight loss, fairly significant for such a short span of time. So I've also been trying to eat little bits throughout the day.

Today I haven't had any panic attack symptoms. I know I shouldn't be keeping score of that. I have had  some mild-moderate symptoms of anxiety - a near-constant chest tightness/lump in throat/pounding heart thing. Everything checks out with my nurse gadgets - blood pressure and heart rate are normal, so I'm not that worried about it. I just tell myself "Isn't it interesting how in tune you are with the normal functions of your body right now? Your heart always beats at this rate, but you can feel it right now because your senses are heightened in anxiety. Your chest feels tense when you are carrying anxiety. It's interesting how that lump in your throat doesn't keep you from breathing normally and efficiently or swallowing food and drink." And when I say these things to myself, those things start to subside a bit more.

So all in all, I'm looking forward to my work week. I'm also looking forward to setting up an appointment with my doctor to fill him in. I'm not currently on a routine anti-anxiety med - I just have Xanax to use when I need it. I try not to use it unless it really feels like an emergency. For example, I haven't used even one this whole weekend. I've probably used one in the past 4 weeks. I'm not against medication. I'm just against side effects and withdrawal symptoms. I might also ask him if he can check my thyroid levels. There's still a little part of me that would like to be able to say, "OH! It was only an overactive thyroid. That explains everything!" But I know what I've been learning this weekend can help me in any situation, and that if this is just truly anxiety, I can overcome.

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