If you follow me on Instagram you will know that I am going through a bout of anxiety. I just thought I would document exactly how anxiety affects me and my daily life when I’m having an ‘episode’.
Anxiety affects people in different ways and each time I have it, it is a different experience. I find it really tricky talking to people who have never suffered from any form of it as nine times out of ten they just don’t get it. But, if you do suffer you will know how utterly consuming it can be.
So, I’ve been fine (mentally) for a good while, I was in a great place feeling happy and getting on with life. Anxiety for me can be triggered by absolutely nothing. I will go to bed happy and wake up with a gut wrenching knot in my tummy feeling that something terrible is going to happen. I have extremely negative and disturbing thoughts such as I’m going to die that day, my children are going to die or I will become ill with cancer. I realise this sounds ridiculous and again, for those who have not experienced any thoughts like this then it will be hard to process my thoughts. Trust me, it is totally the same for me, I find it weird that I think this way when NOTHING has happened.
I go about my day trying to push it all out of my mind, I still have the horrible feeling in my stomach only now it has risen to my throat. My chest is heavy and tight it feels like I’ve got something stuck in my throat and my heart flutters a lot. This is a physical feeling that does not go away no matter how much I distract myself – it takes over my body and mind. I could go on for days feeling like this but trying to ignore it and as with most things I let it bubble up until I’m ready to explode – this is where panic sets in.
I start to get the shakes and just want to cry, hide from the world and not leave the house. I feel the whole world is against me, things go extremely wrong and life is then a downward spiral that I cannot control. I am a constant worrier, I’ll see a friend have a chat then totally over analyse what I’ve said ‘Did I offend them?’ ‘Did I talk too much?’ ‘They acted like I was annoying, have I done something wrong?’. Social anxiety is horrible, the feeling of panic before leaving the house, the what ifs…
When it all gets too much I just have to ride the storm out unfortunately I cannot keep pushing these feelings and worries down. And that is where I am at the minute, I’m going through a really bad state of anxiety physically, mentally and emotionally it is absolutely soul destroying to feel like this. I have a few health issues going on and that is my main worry – am I dying, am I really seriously ill, do I have cancer, will I die soon and have to leave my children and family?
Other times anxiety is manageable, I still think all of those negative thoughts but there’s another side of me saying ‘you are being so ridiculous, get a grip’ and I can deal with that. When it takes over, like now, there’s no reasoning with myself and I just have to wait to feel better. In all honesty I’ve never found a remedy for anxiety, camomile tea helps reduces the racing heart but other than prescription medication – which I do not want – there’s nothing to get me out of this hole. I don’t think having an under active thyroid helps matters either.
I hope this explains things and I know everyone who suffers has a different story. It is the most crushing happiness thief ever.