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Brain: it’s tooooo much!
No really, that’s what it feel like to live with anxiety and panic.
You see there are two types of people, those who have experienced panic and/or anxiety, and those who just don’t really get it. To no fault of their own, they have just had the good fortune to not have experienced them. What I ask that group is, 1. to watch that video (at least once) 2. to just accept that this is a real life issue, even if they do not understand and 3. support those you love however is best for them, not yourself. For those of us who do understand, who have been there or are there, you are not alone.
Anxiety can be the most crippling, debilitating experience, and often it comes on without warning. There is also no guarantee on a specific reaction every time. Those of us who suffer from it, can never quite count on how long it will last, or to what extremes our minds and bodies will go. It can be a flash of sweaty palms and shortness of breath, to feeling like a full-blown heart attack and physical and mental shut down. It is a real mental health issue and it. is. awful. Anxiety is not like a cold, you do not just catch it and get over it. It is much more like, say diabetes, where medication can help me control my anxiety, but it will never take it away.
Everyone is different in how they show it, just a few of the many things I personally have felt/done/been through etc…. I am a stress starver, when most people reach for the Chubby Hubby ice cream, I involuntarily cannot handle food. I try everything, and usually end up force feeding myself. ::side bar on that note… please stop saying “OMG, you are soooo skinny!” people please, do you walk up to someone who has gained weight and say “holy-shit you’re getting fat?” No. Just stop with the body shaming. Really.::I often talk too fast, and can’t catch my breath. I crack my knuckles over and over. My palms sweat and my heart races. At times I have to leave a situation because I am too overwhelmed and my body says “run!” I will perform the same task over because I can’t remember doing it the first time. I stare blankly, while I try to process all of the 3,842 tabs open in my mind. To name a few anyway…
We are all also different in how we handle it. Medication, meditation, alienation, muting substances, other worse outlets like cutting, and some better like writing and praying. I take my meds, I take breaks when I know I need them. I sleep (even if I have to put myself to sleep) when I need it. I write. I put my hands in super cold water. I play happy music, or I seek complete silence. I do yoga and meditate. I sometimes just cry, or numb out. I pray in thanks for the things I am grateful for. I breathe. I have a glass of wine (alcohol is not recommended of course, pssshhhh). I do whatever I can, to get through. As she says in the video, “some days are better than others”.
I hate that it is a touchy subject. Much like domestic violence, why is it so shamed?
I am here to talk to all of you and will continue to share, because I can. I have taught my son about it and talk to him openly. Not only will he be able to open up and face it and seek help if he comes to that juncture in his life. But he also knows how to help those around him, cope. What a skill to have right?
It is not a fun subject of course, I get it… but trust me, if there was a way to “JUST STOP WORRYING” we would all be doing that, instead of suffering. How does that meme go, never in the history of calming down, has anyone ever calmed down by being told to calm down! Don’t tell me to calm down, I do what I want! But seriously… Jokes aside, like I asked before, if you cannot understand, just try to accept. If you need an outlet or help, seek it, do not be afraid or ashamed to ask.
Be a light, be a safe place, be kind, BE LOVE!
This project is run in partnership with Things Dre Makes, and will run for the whole month of May – Mental Health Awareness Month. The idea is to personify a mental illness or difficult emotion you are facing.
Want to take part? Submit your entry here.