Can I be completely honest?
I had a really hard few days recently. I tried to hold myself together and failed. Sometimes we just cannot be who others want us to be. Even when we try.
I’ve always been really social, but I’ve learned that I also need some alone time to recharge. I need some quiet. I need to be able to put on some music and light a candle or pop in a new scentsy bar (#huginamug is perfection). Sometimes I like to clean up (I cannot believe I just said that). Other times I just sit on the floor and snuggle my dogs or my family. My kids know when I need this time and they can be pretty great.
When I can’t recharge, I struggle. A few weeks ago, I ignored that and ended up in tears about something trivial. This is all fairly new to me. My previous low level of anxiety really skyrocketed after the birth of my daughter.
Just recently, my anxiety has been roaring. It’s been pulling me down and it has taken so much strength to hold on. And then finally pull myself out.
Why? Well, there are a variety of reasons. One is hormones. Why do women have they to deal with all this crap?! We have to carry the babies and have crazy hormones. #notcool
Second, I was in a situation that I struggle with. I was stressed. And I couldn’t recharge in my typical way. Because of this and other unknown reasons, my anxiety was nearly over-powering. I didn’t have a panic attack, but it was close. My heart was racing. My chest was tightening. Fight or flight was in effect while I laid in bed and tried to meditate (there was too much noise to concentrate). I tried praying. It was terrible. I felt drained for >24 hours afterwards.
Why am I sharing this? I wonder this as well. I am scared of your judgement. I am scared that you’ll see me differently. But I want to let other people know that you’re not alone. It’ll get better. Use what you know helps you. Curl up in a ball and watch Pride and Prejudice. Read Jen Hatmaker. Watch a comedy. Recharge. Reach out if you can. Talk to your doctor, your loved ones, and maybe your dog. Counselors are cool, too. Why do people in the Midwest hate counselors so much? I’ve gone a few times and was amazed by the insight and coping skills they provided. There’s no shame in taking care of yourself or improving yourself.
When I’m still recovering, walks outside can help. Being in nature and getting some exercise help bring me back to normal. I still feel extra vulnerable, but a little stronger.
If you love someone who’s struggling, listen to them. Be there. They may or may not want to talk. They may or may not want to cuddle. Try not to expose them to triggers. Develop a plan on how you can be most helpful (before the anxiety strikes).
I feel like I’ve laid my heart out here and I am terrified, but this is what writing is to me. And I’m sick of the rainbows and cupcakes everywhere on social media. Life is hard sometimes. For all of us. It’s good to focus on the positive, but don’t let that fool you into thinking someone else’s life is perfect.
P.S. I had a pretty great day today! #poolday
Check in on those around you to make sure they’re doing well, too.