First of all, before I write this next blog post, I’d like to say a MASSIVE MASSIVE thank you to EVERYONE who has spoken to me about the blog post I put up a couple of days ago. I’m gob smacked at the amount of support I’ve had from people – some close friends, some people I haven’t spoken to in a long time and other people I’ve never even met! It’s such a wonderful feeling to see all these people genuinely understanding your dealings with mental health and waving their hands in the air and saying “I get it too!”. Awesome.
However, yesterday was quite hard. My feelings of worry have arisen again, perhaps due to the fact I was so over whelmed by the amount of support I had over the past couple of days. It’s actually quite daunting to receive that when you’ve been used to not only having some people ignore your worries in the past, but also ignoring the feelings yourself. So when I woke up yesterday I didn’t feel at ease and kept getting heart pains and tingling in my legs and arms [all these sensations sending messages to my brain alerting it that I’m going to keel over and have an anxiety attack at any given moment].
I think my main fear after thinking about it a little and trying not to succumb to the anxiety was that now all these wonderful messages had been sent, what was I going to do to mess that up? What false move would I make to stop those kind messages flowing in?
Then I convinced myself that people perhaps hadn’t read my blog properly, and had gone over it since their initial reading and decided “actually this girl is full of it. Half of this stuff is probably a lie anyway,”. You can see how this can spiral into something quite damaging in my own head?
Before I knew it I had kind of gone into myself again yesterday, not really wanting to chat to many people, just wanting to get through the day, get myself home and crawl into my bed and shut the world out for a bit. It’s my go to reaction I think when I’ve had a day of over-thinking and worrying about things. I just turn into my old teenage self.
That’s how I usually see it anyway. I see that there are two sides to my personality, completely split down the middle. One side is my adult self, someone who can quite easily walk into a shop and ask someone which aisle something is in without even thinking about it. The other side of my self however will look to the ground, have a quick browse down an aisle and if I can’t find what I’m looking for, quickly leave before anyone has even realised I was there. Yesterday I was the latter.
I actually read a really interesting article yesterday too, and it was “14 Psychologists Were Asked “What is The Most Profound Thing A Patient Has Ever Said To You?”. [http://www.knowable.com/a/14-psychologists-were-asked:-what-is-the-most-profound-thing-a-patient]
Some of them were hilariously funny, other’s were upsetting and some were just bang on the money, one of them in particular. One patient with an anxiety disorder said, “Imagine if every small decision felt like it had life or death consequences.” and upon reading this I nodded to myself in agreement. I experienced that feeling first hand yesterday in fact.
I was chatting to my boyfriend via Facebook messenger whilst on my lunch break at work, and he threw a question at me that I wasn’t prepared for.
“What would you like for dinner?” and before I could answer he had already asked me another question “What about pizza and a couple of baked spuds?”. My head went into over drive. Over such a trivial question.
I thought “well we’ve only got two big baking potatoes at home, that’s not enough for a couple of baked potatoes each?” Then I thought, “what if they don’t get cooked properly, then they’ll be all hard inside and won’t be very appetising?” Then I started punishing myself for being so ridiculous and not being able to answer such a mundane easy question.
I really feel sorry for my boyfriend, particularly on this occasion. All he wanted was “yes pizza and baked potatoes would be lovely!” but instead he got “I don’t know off the top of my head” which is just drivel in itself.
But that’s genuinely what it is like living with anxiety. Something that comes across as so simple will be magnified in my head and have me asking a million questions when there was only one question put out there in the first place.
When I was driving home last night I had a similar feeling I always get when I’m feeling like this, and it’s really hard to explain but I’ll have a whack at it anyway! I basically drive the same route every day to work, and then back again and when I’m feeling quite anxious and a bit out of sync it’s like the dual carriage way kind of just stretches out for miles and miles, and I feel like I’ve been driving for about 20 years. I’ll have my music going, and it’s just me in the car listening to some music, and I feel like that’s just my little world and whatever is going on outside of that isn’t really real. I’ll look at people in their cars and think what is happening in their little car world at the moment? And yesterday I saw in the car in front of me a woman in the passenger seat repeatedly leaning back to check her baby was okay, and then she took her seat belt off and leaned right back and looked like she was picking something up from the floor that perhaps her baby had dropped. And again I thought, that’s literally their world right now. Nothing going on outside of that really matters. But that’s exactly the feeling I want to stop feeling so much.
I want to look around and realise how vast and huge the world is, and that there is so many good things happening within it, even if there is lots of bad too. It’s just so easy to get sucked into your own head sometimes and think you’re the only car driving along the dual carriage way.
Me and my boyfriend had pizza and salad in the end, and it was really lovely. Thank you Co-Op.